Help Sustain The Women’s Studies Fellowship

The WW Dissertation Fellowship in Women’s Studies has been supporting outstanding Ph.D. candidates since 1974. These Fellows, conducting original, significant, interdisciplinary research on women’s and gender issues, have gone on to grow and shape the field of women’s studies.

After nearly 50 years and more than 600 Fellows, the program needs your help. We need to generate at least $100,000 by August—both through your own gifts and through your contacts—so we can offer at least one final round of awards in 2022, explore additional funding avenues, and create a celebration of the program’s accomplishments over the years.

“Even today, decades later,” says Dr. Estelle Freedman, one of the very first Women’s Studies Fellows, “for a student who is writing a dissertation that may now be related to transnational women’s studies, or queer studies, or trans studies—areas where they may not always have a long historiography, or they may not have the support in particular institutions—to have the Women’s Studies Fellowship supporting their work continues to be a stamp of legitimacy and a support beyond the monetary.”

Kiana Murphy was awarded a Women’s Studies Fellowship in 2020 and is completing her dissertation in the English department at the University of Pennsylvania. She often looks to other scholars in the field to expand her own understandings. “The collaborative nature of women’s studies is what grounds me and my work, because this work is never an individual process,” said Ms. Murphy. “It’s a sea of ideas that you’re always building on.”

“Women and gender studies is a critical lens through which to see the world,” says 2020 Women’s Studies Fellow Barbara Sostaita. “It’s a method, it’s an approach, it’s a perspective, it’s a deconstruction.”

If you have connections to potential funders, please contact Beverly Sanford, Vice President and Secretary, at

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