Gender and Women's Studies Programs

Welcome to Gender and Women's Studies  

We offer interdisciplinary programs with a range of courses for a major or minor or a graduate certificate in Gender and Women's Studies. 

We are open to undergraduate students from across the University, from the College of Arts and Sciences to Engineering and the School of Business.

Because gender and sexuality are fundamental to the ways men and women understand themselves, a major or minor in Gender and Women’s Studies can enhance practically any other field of study. It is a discipline that continually asks us to rethink history, culture and identity, and in the 21st Century it continues to transform scholarship and fundamental assumptions in all areas of the humanities, social and natural sciences, and the professions.

Read students' testimonials about the importance of Gender and Women's Studies to their college experience.

Check out our BLOG  or  FACEBOOK page to learn more about us and our current activities.

Upcoming Events

Faculty Spotlight


Dr. Valerie M. Joyce is an Associate Professor in the Theatre Department who teaches Musical Theatre, Theatre for Social Change, and Script Analysis. She has presented her research on Musical Theatre, African American women, and Early American Theatre at national and international conferences, with work appearing in JADTComplutense Journal of English StudiesTheatre History Studies, Pennsylvania History Journal and a forthcoming chapter in The Palgrave Handbook of Musical Theatre Producers.

Although her research interests cut across race, genre, and historical period, the continuous themes in Joyce’s work center on the cultural constructs of gender and the theatre’s role in shaping American womanhood.  Her current project examines embodied performance and African American women before Emancipation through a play she wrote and directed, I Will Speak for Myself, which mixes performance texts and primary historical artifacts to illuminate the lives of African American women from the Colonial period through the Civil War.  She is now preparing a book manuscript that recuperates these lost women and explores production practice as theatre research.  She discusses this work in her 2015 TED talk available at the TEDxVU site

Dr. Joyce is a board member of ATDS and an active member of the Music/Theatre Dance and Women and Theatre focus groups of ATHE.  She is currently the chair of the ASTR nominations committee and a VITAL Faculty Associate.  She also directs, choreographs, and designs costumes with recent credits that include The Threepenny OperaLight in the PiazzaCabaret, and Bat Boy.  She is currently rehearsing Translations and designing costumes for the world premiere of A Persistent Memory in New York City.  She received her PhD in Theatre History and Performance Studies from the University of Maryland and her M.A in Theatre from Villanova University. 

"Students in the GWS Integrating Seminar: Gender, Performance and Social Change show you why you should join GWS..."

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Contact Information

Gender and Women's Studies Program
Villanova University, SAC 488
800 Lancaster Avenue
Villanova, PA 19085


Phone: 610-519-3815

Catherine Kerrison, Director of Academics 610-519-4660
Timothy McCall, Director of Programming 610-519-3897

Administrative/Events Assistant:
Joyce Harden

Graduate Assistant:
Jessica Otterbine


GWS is proud to participate in
the Safe Zone Program.