Women's Studies and Accounting & Management
"Given that Accounting and Management is my chosen professional line and the field that I have spent all my working life in, my foray into women’s studies may seem a little odd at first glance. It really isn’t odd if one spares this a little thought. Women’s studies is an area that, in my view, opens up a person’s mind to the various challenges, trials and tribulations that women in all societies have faced in establishing themselves as a force to be reckoned with. This laid out for me a whole new perspective on human nature and society’s workings. Management, after all, is at very basic level all about dealing with people and courses in women’s studies help to understand and appreciate the various forces that make all people, not just women, behave in the way they do. This understanding is extremely important if one wants to be a successful manager.
I would add, further, that women’s studies courses raise one’s sensitivity to the complications intrinsic to the human condition and human society, this is a very strong foundation to build any career that is people oriented; Human Resources, Public Relations and Media to name just a few."
-Sameer Vijayakar (2008)
Women's Studies and Business & Managerial Accounting
"I believe that my background in Women’s and Gender Studies offers me a unique platform from which to approach a future in managerial accounting. I believe that, in order to be successful in a management position, an individual not only needs to be tolerant of his or her employees’ diverse characteristics and backgrounds, but also cognisant of whether he or she is providing equitable treatment and opportunities to his or her staff. I also believe that the Gender Studies program has trained me to ensure that I interact with all individuals equitably, as well as equipped me with a sophisticated level of verbal and written communication skills. Effective and respectful communication is of vital importance throughout all levels of business, and I have no doubt that my ability to communicate in such a way has been strengthened by my involvement with Women’s and Gender Studies.
I have a specific career objective that would combine my academic background as a Gender Studies major with a degree in Accounting. Ideally, I would like to establish an accounting firm that provides affordable accounting services to new charities and NGOs, locally and globally. I believe that through providing such types of assistance to a variety of groups, especially in their beginning stages, I could combine my skill sets acquired through a degree in Accounting with my social knowledge acquired through my Gender Studies degree to participate in positive social change."
-Lindsey Arseneau (2008)
Gender Studies and Self Analysis
"The most important thing for me after experiencing three life-changing WGS courses was to dispel the myth that only women should take WGS and only women take WGS courses; I had one of the most exciting and stimulating discussions with a male peer in the Women, Migration & Diaspora class. These classes make you more self-aware irregardless of your gender. You are able to see social dynamics and attend to both your privilege and social injustices. It is an eye opening experience that is valuable for both males & females alike: male contribution is not only welcomed, but also encouraged and valued in this program. It is all about respect and deconstructing social relationships that have existed for centuries."
-Adetilewa Akin-Aina (2008)
A Step "OUTSIDE THE BOX"
"Taking gender studies courses in university was probably the best decision I have made in my life. Gender inequality, sexual prejudice, misrepresentation of the female image and demonization of the word feminism are some of the many issues women face in their society. However taking gender studies courses enabled me to escape from the four-dimension box that had blocked my mind from observing how deeply they are embedded within the norms of society. For instance, media sets standards on the female image. Petite women with perfect body parts are usually characterized as sexual, seductive and desirable while those that are overweight are portrayed as obnoxious, messy and the least sexual. As a result many women are judged and discriminated by others in society. The beauty of taking women and gender studies is that it not only provides an understanding of current issues but also takes us on an evolutionary journey that illustrates different stages of power struggle that women went through in an attempt to establish themselves as autonomous, equal, intelligent and powerful human beings. Moreover it also teaches us on a global level that cultural, religious and ethnic differences aside, women are interconnected and share similar struggles throughout the world. WGS courses allowed me to not only become a wiser observer of my environment but also helped me to connect the past in order to understand the current social issues. I highly encourage both men and women to allow their minds to view the world under a different light by taking women and gender studies courses. I for one will take the knowledge I have gained and use it everyday of my life in order to create more opportunities for women to take down barriers that have marginalized them in society."
-Anashe Gharabeki (2009)
Strengthen Foundations in Post-Grad Studies
"I wanted to let you know that the WGS program was amazing in preparing me for postgraduate study in Gender studies. I'm able to walk into my seminars with extra confidence because many of the readings that are assigned, I have read and the concepts I have already explored."
-Gurvinder Singh (2009)
How Gender Studies and the WGS-AG Changed my Life
"I was never one to take part in school events, or clubs or groups. I was here to learn, not waste my time with things that had no bearing on my life. Like most people, I had the dirty version of feminist ingrained in my head because of the way women in popular culture and our community are portrayed when they dare to go against the socially constructed path that has been laid out for them. Feminists were extreme, and though I supported women’s rights, I never associated myself with feminist action until my fourth year at UTM. I enrolled in WGS200 in my second year, but was still too unsure of myself to start the change necessary that would shape the path of the rest of my university career and life. After a few other WGS courses, and one particularly inspiring lecture, I decided I wanted to do something. I was not sure what, but I figured it out soon. It appeared in the form of the WGS-AG.
The Women and Gender Studies Action Group (WGS-AG) is a UTM campus group that was founded to promote gender studies on campus and raise awareness of issues of gender, race, health and sexuality, social and political issues, on and off campus. It provides an impetus for the university community to become active members in the community in regards to gender and social issues. I joined because after a long three years of sitting stagnant in my lectures, I finally found a program and courses that made me want to apply what I learned in my courses to the real world, to see change, and be part of it. The WGS-AG does just this. It gave me and my fellow members a forum to discuss the things we had been learning in our WGS course and the theory to analyse what we were doing, what can be done differently to make it more effective, accessible for all students, and its impact on those around us and ourselves. Though admittedly I still feel like a novice in my feminist education, the last two years have been extremely enlightening for me. WGS courses have provided me with the opportunity to learn about myself, and the way the university, the community, the country and the world operates. We may not have made astronomical changes in the grand scheme of things, but the changes in ourselves, the opinions I know that I have personally changed because of my involvement in the WGS-AG and my knowledge of feminist theory is an achievement in itself."
-Katelin Parker (2009)