May 20, 2024  
2012-2013 Graduate Catalog 
2012-2013 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Women’s Studies (Specialization)

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Graduate Programs, Certificates, Specializations, Emphases

The Interdisciplinary Graduate Specialization in Women’s Studies is designed to enhance the master’s and doctoral programs at the University, which prepare students for careers in education at all levels: social service work, health services, business, public policy, government and nongovernmental organizations, and research. Students in the program will gain a more complete understanding of how the social construction of gender has influenced the roles, contributions, and experience of women in many different cultures, now and in the past. Such awareness can help them better understand our contemporary world with its changing roles for women and men alike. To the gender analysis of any situation, they will bring knowledge of the complex ways in which gender interacts with race, social class, age, sexual orientation, and other forms of diversity. They will understand the connection between Women’s Studies scholarship and the scholarship of other disciplines. Students will develop an appreciation for the connections between Women’s Studies scholarship, activism, and social change, historically and in the present.

Graduate work in Women’s Studies is offered at The University of Maine through the Women in the Curriculum and Women’s Studies Program, which also administers an undergraduate major and minor. Students can use the interdisciplinary graduate specialization to enhance master’s and doctoral degrees offered by other departments. (A partial list of cooperating units includes Communication, Education and Human Development, English, History, Nursing, Psychology, and Social Work.)  It can also provide a focus for the interdisciplinary Ph.D. or Ed.D. degree programs or for the Master of Arts in Liberal Studies. A Women’s Studies advisor who is a member of the graduate faculty will assist each student in designing a program of study appropriate to her or his goals and will be part of the evaluation process. Students and advisors will be matched according to the students’ areas of interest.


  1. Candidates for any master’s degree and the Certificate of Advanced Study in Education are required to take at least 9 credits including WST 510 and another WST course. The additional course(s) can be chosen, with the approval of the student’s Women’s Studies advisor, from WST courses or departmental Women’s Studies electives at the 400-level or above. At least 2 courses must be at the 500-level or above.
  2. Candidates for the Ph.D. or Ed.D. are required to take at least 12 credits, including WST 510 and WST 520. WST 580 is highly recommended. The additional course(s) can be chosen, with the approval of the student’s Women’s Studies advisor, from WST courses or Women’s Studies departmental electives at the 400-level or above.

Students who are taking thesis credits in their departments and writing Women’s Studies theses or dissertations can use up to 2 thesis credits toward their Women’s Studies specializations if they take WST 610 to make up 3 credits.

For More Information

Questions can be answered by the faculty listed or by contacting the program director, Ann Schonberger, at 207-581-1228 or e-mail Visit our web page at


Full Graduate Faculty

Elizabeth J. Allan, Ph. D. (Ohio State, 1999), Professor of Higher Education Leadership. Gender and education, critical and poststructural feminist theory, equity policy in higher education, sexual violence, feminist research methodologies.

Laura Artesani, D.M.A. (West Virginia, 1997), Associate Professor of Music. Women and music, history of women music educators in North America.

Carla Billitteri, Ph. D. (SUNY at Buffalo, 2001), Associate Professor of English. Literary theory, feminist theory and gender studies, poetry and poetics, European and American Literature (19th- & 20th-century); drama.

Amy Blackstone, Ph. D. (Minnesota, 2003), Associate Professor of Sociology. Sociology of gender, families, and work.

Sandra Butler, Ph. D. (Washington, Seattle, 1991), Professor of Social Work. Social policy, economic security, welfare, health, and well being of women across the life span, especially related to older women and lesbians.

Sandra Caron, Ph. D. (Syracuse, 1986), Professor of Family Relations/ Human Sexuality. Women’s sexuality, cross-cultural perspectives on sexuality, family studies.

Nancy Fishwick, Ph. D. (Case Western Reserve, 1993), Associate Professor of Nursing. Women’s health, domestic violence, rural health, primary healthcare.

Susan Gardner, Ph. D. (Washington State, 2005), Associate Professor of Higher Education. Issues of social justice in higher education and the experiences of underrepresented populations in higher education institutions.

Kim Huisman, Ph. D. (Southern California, 2003), Associate Professor of Sociology. Immigration, gender, and race.

Mazie Hough, Ph. D. (University of Maine, 1997), Associate Director of the Women in the Curriculum and Women’s Studies Program, Assistant Professor of History. U.S. women’s history, Maine history, adoption and reproductive policies, feminist research methods.

Naomi Jacobs, Ph. D. (Missouri, 1982), Professor of English. Women’s literature, British and American fiction, utopian literature, feminist theory.

Kristin Langellier, Ph. D. (Southern Illinois, 1980), Professor of Communication. Performance Studies, women and communication, feminist research methods.

Laura Lindenfeld Sher, Ph. D. (California, Davis, 2003), Associate Professor of Communication and Journalism and the Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center. Film/media criticism and theory, cultural studies, food studies, Jewish studies.

Pauleena MacDougall, Ph. D. (Maine, 1995), Director, Maine Folklife Center, Faculty Associate in Anthropology and Cooperating Research Associate in Lobster Institute. Women and folklore.

Kathleen March, Ph. D. (SUNY at Buffalo, 1979), Professor of Spanish. Women of the Hispanic world, feminist literary criticism, gender and language, gender and nationalism.

Jessica Miller, Ph. D. (Connecticut, 1999), Associate Professor of Philosophy. Feminist philosophy, feminist theory, feminist ethics, feminist approaches to biomedical ethics.

Kristina Nielson Passman, Ph. D. (Iowa, 1982), Associate Professor of Classical Language and Literature, Department of Modern Languages and Classics. Women in the ancient world, women and religion and mythology, feminist ethics.

Eric E. Peterson, Ph. D. (Southern Illinois, 1980), Professor. Philosophy of communication, sexualities in mass communication, cultural studies.

Ann Schonberger, Ph. D. (Wisconsin-Madison, 1976), Director of the Women in the Curriculum and Women’s Studies Program, Professor of Mathematics. Women and education, gender differences in science and mathematics, mathematics education.

Nathan Stormer, Ph. D. (Minnesota, 1997), Associate Professor of Communication. Feminist rhetoric, reproductive rights, culture and discourse theory.

Associate Graduate Faculty

Margaret O. Killinger, Ph. D. (Maine, 2004), Rezendes Preceptor for the Arts, Honors College, U.S. women’s history, biography.

Renate Klein, Ph. D. (Marburg, 1989), Associate Professor of Human Development and Family Studies. Cross-cultural studies of domestic violence, family studies, feminist research methods.

Elizabeth Neiman, Ph.D. (Wisconsin-Milwaukee, 2011), Faculty Associate in Women’s Studies, English, and Honors. Feminist theory.


Sandra Haggard, MS (Maine, 1973), Associate Professor of Biology, University of Maine, Augusta-Bangor. Women, health, science and the environment.

Nancy Lewis, MS (Columbia, 1984), Head of Reference, Fogler Library. Women and religion.

Jennifer Pickard, MA (Maine, 1992), Part-time faculty. Maine Women’s History, Women, Health and the Environment.

Rhea Côté Robbins, MA (Maine, 1997), Part-time faculty in Women’s Studies and Franco-American Studies. Franco-American Women.

Yvonne Thibodeau, MA (Maine, 1998), Part-time faculty in Peace and Reconciliation Studies. Women activists.

Faculty Emerita

Margaret Cruikshank, Ph. D. (Loyola, 1969), Lecturer in Women’s Studies. Lesbian studies, LGBT Studies, women and aging.

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Graduate Programs, Certificates, Specializations, Emphases