Women's Studies at Aquinas College
  • professor speaking in front of crowd next to other women

    Women's Studies

  • Women's Studies

The Resourceful Women Conference

The Resourceful Women Conference
Saturday, March 24, 2018
9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Aquinas College, Upper Donnelly Center

The Resourceful Women Conference is a biennial, interdisciplinary conference featuring undergraduate student presentations on women, gender, and identity. It is an opportunity for undergraduates to work with faculty mentors to showcase their work from all disciplines – literary analyses, research projects, scientific studies, art, music, poetry, theatre, dance – addressing issues related to women, gender, or identity. The 2018 conference includes a free luncheon with music by the Aquinas College Women’s Chorus, followed by a keynote emphasizing women, gender, and identity as related to STEAM areas, particularly the topic of Women’s Health. Our keynote speaker for 2018 will be Dr. Diana Bitner, Ob/Gyn with Spectrum Health, author, and Women’s Health Specialist, titled “All the Days of Our Lives: Women’s Health and Happiness.”

For questions, contact the Women's Studies Center. To submit your project, complete the submission form here, by January 15, 2018.

Why Study Women's Studies?

Women's Studies is an interdisciplinary academic curriculum that exposes students to women's historical and contemporary roles, their accomplishments, and their experiences in our society and across cultures.

The Jane Hibbard Idema Women's Studies Center at Aquinas prepares students to become catalysts for change and voices for feminist ideals, both in our society and around the globe. AQ Women's Studies faculty are as diverse as the field of Women's Studies. Not only do they have a range of interests, but they also each approach their commitment to teaching differently.


Women’s Studies prepares students for leadership and careers. Our alumnae work for the Illinois Housing Council, Team Detroit, the Grand River Bands of Ottawa Indians, and other diverse organizations.


Students combine academics and their passions - Katie McKay ‘15 combined Women’s Studies, Spanish, and English to create a tutoring program for Spanish-speaking women in Grand Rapids and was quickly hired by the Literacy Center of West Michigan.


Women’s Studies students have the opportunity to shadow alumnae working in a field of interest through Aquinas’ only Summer Externship Program.


Our regional Resourceful Women Conference, and undergraduate interdisciplinary conference on gender and women’s issues, awards the $500 Diane Herbruck Prize to outstanding student papers.


Art and Women’s Studies professor Madeline Kaczmarczyk was awarded Grand Rapids Festival Exhibit’s West Michigan Potters Guild Award for Ceramics and the S.H.E. Foundation Award for Excellence in Depiction of the Feminine by a Woman.


Alumna Kelly Dittmar ‘05, Assistant Research Professor at the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University, published Navigating Gendered Terrain, a study of gender influences on campaign strategy and behavior of candidates (Temple UP 2015).


The annual Equality Bake Sale draws attention to the gender wage gap by charging women 25% less for their baked goods - donating proceeds to a local women’s shelter.


Student Cheyna Roczkowski ‘10 wrote The Jane Doe Project, a student-directed and student-performed collage of narratives from faculty, student, and staff experiences of sexual assault and harassment.


Courses are supported by The Jane Hibbard Idema Women’s Studies Center programs, with speakers including Rebecca Campbell, Winona LaDuke, Nicholas Kristof, Stacy Malkan, Diane Rehm, and Vandana Shiva.


Dr. Amy Dunham Strand, Assistant Professor of Women’s Studies and Director of the Jane Hibbard Idema Women’s Studies Center, links language, literature, gender, and culture in her book Language, Gender, and Citizenship in American Literature, 1789-1919 (Routledge 2009).