Best of 2001: Best Original Women's Studies Program

San Diego State University

The women's movement really came of age between 1970 and 1972. After the protests and the furious national debate, colleges across the country started wondering if this wasn't a subject that should be studied. But while Princeton pondered and Harvard hemmed and hawed, women at San Diego State acted. In 1970, SDSU became the nation's first university to establish a Women's Studies program. Thirty years later, two courses have become 30. The program has evolved into a full department, with ten permanent faculty members. Since 1995 they have offered master's degrees in women's studies. Why choose SDSU? In the 30 years since they started, more than 600 higher-learning institutions have followed in their footsteps. But San Diego State's program remains one of the biggest. It attracts students from the U.S. as well as Jordan, China, and Mexico who want to study violence against women, work vs. family, cloning, glass ceilings, sexual harassment, and, perhaps most relevant for a border-hugging college, how to apply the lessons of battles won here to the rest of the world. And, yes, men may apply.

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