Faculty/Staff Awards & Scholarships
The Jean Giles-Sims Wise Woman Award is presented to the faculty member who best exemplifies the principles of Women and Gender Studies and helps to further the interests of women at TCU. The award recognizes faculty contributions both inside and outside of the classroom. Any faculty member who teaches a WGST-attribute course during the current academic year is eligible to be nominated for the award, however, award recipients from previous years are not eligible for subsequent nominations.
Procedure: The WGST Awards Committee solicits nominations for the award in Spring semesters. Any student enrolled in a WGST class (undergraduate or graduate) in summer, fall, or spring semesters of a given academic year may nominate a candidate. Once all nominations are in, a survey will be sent out to all students in the WGST program to vote for a winner based on the nominating statements of the students in their classes. The winner is announced at the annual Garden Party.
2017-2018: Margaret Lowry
Dr. Lowry is Lecturer for the Women & Gender Studies Program and has taught the Introductory course numerous times, has mentored graduate student co-teachers, and has helped coordinate the WGST Internship program. The WGST program is proud to call Margaret Lowry the new Wise Woman Award winner. Below is just one of ten nominating statements from her students.
Dr. Lowry is the reason I am proud to be a feminist. Not only has she introduced me to all the great theorists and ideas, but she is actively working to find internships for the students in the WGST program, myself included.
2017-18: Rima Abunasser
2016-17: Jacqueline Lambiase
2015-16: Hanan Hammad
2014-15: Layne Craig
2013-14: Ariane Balizet & Carrie Leverenz
2012-13: Elizabeth Flowers
2011-12: Rebecca Sharpless
2010-11: Lisa Vanderlinden
2009-10: Theresa Gaul
2008-09: Bonnie Blackwell
2007-08: Karen Steele
The WGST Research and Creative Activity Award is a one-year honorary appointment that recognizes excellence in scholarship and creative activity on women and gender by an affiliated faculty member in Women and Gender Studies at TCU. During the academic year of the award, the award recipient normally presents one public lecture on the scholarship or creative activity recognized by the award and leads one program to encourage research and creative activity on topics related to women and gender.
Claudia V. Camp is the John F. Weatherly Professor Emerita of Religion at Texas Christian University, where she taught from 1980-2016. She has published three monographs, (most recently Gender and the Rise of Canon Consciousness: Ben Sira and the Men Who Handle Books); six edited collections; and numerous articles on the interpretation of biblical wisdom and narrative literature. Her work is always grounded in feminist criticism, but she explicitly intersects that perspective with a wide range of disciplinary approaches: literary, anthropological, and socio-historical. She has served as Director of the Women and Gender Studies program at TCU, as well as on the SBL Committee on the Status of Women in the Profession. For the past 12 years, she has been co-general editor for the Library of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament monograph series.
This year’s recipient of the Faculty Research and Creative Activity Award is Associate Professor of Religion and South Asian Religions, Dr. Antoinette DeNapoli. Dr. DeNapoli’s research explores the intersections of gender, performance, and religious experience in the Hindu traditions of asceticism, mysticism, and devotion. She will deliver a lecture about her research in Fall 2019. Stay tuned!
A Short History of Women’s Studies/Women & Gender Studies at TCU by Claudia V. Camp
When I arrived at TCU in 1980, there were few women in tenure-track positions in AddRan (maybe a half dozen, though there were others in Education and Nursing). Priscilla Tate and Jean Giles-Sims had begun talking the previous year about a possible women’s studies program, and a small group of us continued to meet about it in the early 80s. These conversations also typically included a quite different issue as well, namely, getting a child care center on campus. Notably, despite at least two significant feasibility studies done over the years (Linda Haviland Moore, now retired from Social Work, was involved in these and could tell you more about it), there was never any movement on this front. The fact that it took 15 years from first conception to get the academic program in place will tell you something about the effort involved. The problem, as much as anything, was not outright opposition, but rather how few women there were to work on it and child care as well. Also, of course, there was some sense of vulnerability since, when we started, I don’t think any of the main participants were tenured. So, to my recollection, work on the project ebbed and flowed over that first decade: there was a lot of conversation in the early 80s, but not much movement; then, in the late 80s and early 90s, with more women around, and more of us tenured, the conversation picked back up again. When Priscilla became Associate Dean she, with Jean, received the blessing of the Dean, Mike McCracken, to really get a program on the books. I was deeply involved in the program development generally, and Linda Hughes and I were responsible for the first course proposal for the Senior Capstone course.
Even so, when the program started in 1994, we had little more than the minimum of courses needed for the minor requirement (in addition to the new WOST intro and capstone, I think there were only about 6 or 8 discipline-based WOST designated courses available). And thus things more or less remained for the next decade, through Jean’s and my tenures as Directors. It would be interesting to see how the numbers of women faculty did or did not change through that period (in Religion, e.g., we hired a second woman in 1981 and then not another one for almost another decade). And, of course, it took time for what newly hired women there were to establish themselves at TCU.
Though the program remained small throughout my tenure, there was increased student interest—more students taking courses and participating in events, even if not actually minoring—largely because of the close working relationship I had with Marcy Paul, who was director of the erstwhile Women’s Resource Program in Student Development. This mutually supportive relationship between the academic program and Student Development was one of the positive aspects of TCU’s program, and quite important for our students at the time, who also included some men (see the photo on the first brochure!). There were other initiatives during my time as Director that only came to fruition afterwards: I initiated and began development of the graduate Certificate program, and also worked on the early stages of what became the Women and Gender Institute.
After stepping down as Director, and up to the time of my retirement in 2016, I continued teach WGST designated courses and to serve on various committees, most recently chairing the student awards committee and organizing the student research presentation event in the spring semesters. I also served, with Joanne Green, as Interim Co-Director of WGST during Spring 2015, when Theresa Gaul was on leave. During that time, I led the development of new by-laws for the program and worked with Joanne in administering the program and hosting a range of events.
WOST, now WGST, has obviously boomed in the past 6 years, and clearly Theresa’s impressive leadership has had a great deal to do with that. Her leadership has helped channel what seems to me an underlying boom of more women faculty in general, more tenured women faculty, and more faculty of whatever gender who align themselves with feminist values. I’ve always enjoyed learning about the research of my colleagues and been frustrated at the lack of opportunities to engage with and celebrate their accomplishments. Thus, when I had some funding associated with my Weatherly professorship, I organized and funded what have become the annual Celebrations of WGST Faculty Research and Creative Activities. These events are, to my mind, what real celebrations should be—food! wine!—and succinct but memorable presentations of the amazing research accomplishments of women and men at TCU.