Kent Seeks Center for Study of Gender and Sexuality

KENT, Ohio – Kent State University says it will move to the “forefront of gender and sexuality research” with the establishment of a new Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality.

Planning for the center, which was announced today, will begin “in the coming weeks,” the university said, with an advisory group of faculty and students working to develop its mission and structure.

KSU’s College of Arts and Sciences will oversee the faculty-led academic unit that will enable the expansion and integration of LGBT Studies [lesbian, gas, bisexual, transgender] and Women’s Studies programs.

“The combining of the programs will bring Kent State to the forefront of gender and sexuality research while creating new undergraduate and graduate courses for the exploration and understanding of gender and sexuality,” the university said in its announcement.

Added James Blank, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, in a prepared statement, “I have long had an interest in the area of gender and sexuality studies and have felt for some time that Kent State should move to bring together faculty and students with interests in these areas.”

Blank appointed Molly Merryman, coordinator of Kent State’s LGBT Studies Program and an associate professor of sociology, to lead the formation of the new center along with Suzanne Holt, director of the Women’s Studies Program and professor in the Center for Comparative and Integrative Programs.

“This center will once again place Kent State University at the vanguard of critical scholarly inquiry and pedagogy by pulling together the stellar researchers and instructors already here with a united scholastic vision,” Merryman said. “It also will provide a supportive yet challenging classroom environment for our students, particularly for those who are sexual minorities, and will enhance already existing academic disciplines.”

The advisory group hopes to have recommendations on the specific makeup of the new center, including its location, by July 1.

SOURCE: Kent State University

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