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7 Things That Happen Upon Taking Your First Women’s Studies Class

There are a number of general education requirements that Gender and Women’s Studies classes often fill at universities. But whether you signed up to fill a bio requirement or to indulge in your passionate feminism, no need to fret. Because GWS classes are consistently, in a word, badass. These things things are bound to happen upon taking your first Gender and Women’s Studies class: 

1. You learn more about lady parts than you thought imaginable

It’s only the first day, and your professor has already asked 200 strangers to draw the vulva. You’re sure you’ve got this down, until your new prof. debunks you and makes you realize you really have no idea what the proper anatomy of your downstairs female fun parts is like. You can’t imagine what the small percentage of boys in the class feel like… Let the learning begin!


2. You gain a stronger sense of pride in being a woman

As you listen to and read about the struggles that women have overcome throughout history, whether in health care, social justice, or sexual inequality in the bedroom, you can’t help but feel even prouder to be a woman. You can often be heard marching back to your dorm room after class, screaming, “We’ve come this far, now let’s close that orgasm gap!”

3. If you weren’t a feminist before taking a GWS class, you are now

Your professor confidently states on the first day that you will become a feminist by the end of this course. And ever is she right. We GWS-ers swear on Gloria Steinem that you’ll join the fight for gender equality after your first Women’s Studies course! It’s impossible not to believe that women deserve equal opportunities after learning about the oppression our gender has faced throughout history. Plus, you know, common sense.

4. You learn more about your body and how it functions

The day you finally understand just how each particular hormone and cell of the menstrual cycle functions, you will have an epiphany of sorts. You will learn the true size of the clitoris, what PMS really is and the effects of certain contraceptives on your body. It’s almost scary to think you didn’t have this knowledge pre-GWS! 

5. You beg your partner to take a GWS class

“I don’t understand women,” they say. “Where’s the clitoris?” they ask. “I’m not a feminist,” they claim. Well, we sure hope these aren’t things your partner says. But regardless, guys tend to make up less than 10 percent of students in GWS lecture halls. Little do they know how valuable their newfound knowledge would be to pleasin’ the ladies – and being a better-rounded human being in general. If as females, we gain more respect for women by taking these classes, just imagine the effect on guys! Run, don’t walk, to your BF’s dorm (if you have a male partner). Get that kid enrolled. 

6. You actually look forward to your class readings (for once!).

You’re used to reluctantly looking at your syllabus each week and seeing yet another daunting list of readings to complete. But with GWS, you’re reading about the kickass accomplishments of women throughout history, the intricacies of how your sexual organs work (this is really for your benefit) and truly interesting social events, gender debates and more. Who wouldn’t want to read about a bunch of really, really cool shiz that women have done?

7. You want to change your major to Gender and Women’s Studies.

You’re already double-majoring, but it couldn’t hurt to throw in a third, right? Okay, maybe you’ll have some reconsidering to do. But you can’t help but feel an intense interest in Gender and Women’s Studies, just after one class. Who wouldn’t want to be the next Margaret Sanger or Audre Lorde?

Yoncé would approve.
 

Meredith is a senior completing a Bachelor of Arts at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, majoring in Communication Arts and Gender & Women's Studies with a certificate in Digital Studies. She moonlights as a freelance portrait photographer, and you can find her work at meredithmariephotography.com.
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