Honors and Awards in Women's, Gender & Sexuality Studies 

Alice Drum Summer Research Award in Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies

This award is given annually to support student summer projects related to research, creative arts, or community and public service.   

Alice Drum Award

Angela Jeannet Prize for Excellence in Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies

The Angela Jeannet Prize is given to a WGSS major or minor who exhibits intellectual achievement and has made a positive contribution to the feminist dialogue on campus.

Angela Jeannet Prize

Guidelines for Honors in Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies

Honors candidates for WGSS must adhere to all stipulations for Honors as outlined in the College Catalog.

WGSS Honors Guidelines

Recent Honors Projects

Print copies of most F&M Honors Theses are available for consultation in the Reading Room of Archives & Special Collections, located in Martin Library of the Sciences. Abstracts for theses produced in 2005 and later are available online, and are linked below. If the author  has granted permission, the full thesis can be accessed electronically from its abstract page. 


E Schoenfeld Marcovitz, "Theories on Permissibility: The Similiarities & Contrarities Among Transsexual, Transracial, & Transabled Identities"


Laura Sabatino, "Lesbian Temporality: 'Moments' as an Expression of Lesbian Perception of Time in Fiction"


Lauren Matt, "Power through Language, Power in Sex: A Historical Comparative Analysis of American Sex Education"


Stephanie Lyn Palazzo, "Let There Be Sex: The Construction of Female Sexuality in Evangelical Dualism"


Torrie Hazelwood, "A Contested Field: The Impact of Ideology on Women’s Sport Participation in China and Saudi Arabia"*


Elizabeth Parks, "The Prostitute, the Soldier, and the Individual Girl: The Fight for Morality in World War I, Lancaster and Beyond"

* abstract only available online

Featured Honors Projects 

2019 Laura Sabatino 

  • Graduation Photo
Lesbian Temporality: 'Moments' as an Expression of Lesbian Perception of Time in Fiction

Laura Sabatino ‘19 (Joint major - WGSS/English)

Advisor:  Gabriel Mayora



In this thesis I extend the existing scholarship regarding the literary theory of queer temporality by coining the more specific term “lesbian temporality”. Queer temporality is a term used to express the ways in which time or expressions of time change because of a queer character, queer form of writing, queer author, etc.. While, this term is useful in that it is very broad, it also omits specificity in regards to individual groups among the LGBTQ community. I extend and specify this theory, using Michael Cunningham's The Hours, Patricia Highsmith’s The Price of Salt, Alice Walker’s The Color Purple, and Rita Mae Brown’s Rubyfruit Jungle as examples of the ways in which lesbian characters interact with time in unique, non teleological, and distinctively lesbian way.

Experience: I loved the entire process of my independent study! It was such a wonderful culmination of my academic growth at college. It was such a journey of discovery, both personally and intellectually. During my defense I learned how to explain and discuss my thesis at length. Engaging with my own material with other academics and in front of an audience was such a formative experience. I built intellectual and personal relationships with my adviser, Professor Mayora, and committee members, Professors Faleschini Lerner, Shelton, Blair, and Huber, all of whom helped advance me as an academic, preparing me for grad school and whatever else comes ahead!  

 2018 Lauren Matt

  • Lauren Matt, right, recipient of Honors in WGSS, at Commencement 2018 with Prof. Maria Mitchell

Lauren Matt, right, recipient of Honors in WGSS, at Commencement 2018 with Prof. Maria Mitchell


"Power Through Language, Power in Sex: A Historical Comparative Analysis of American Sex Education"

Lauren Matt '18 (SOC major / WGSS minor)

Advisor: Maria Mitchell

This thesis casts the history and politics of American sex education into a comparative and theoretical framework to illuminate the ways in which patriarchy and capitalism have shaped American notions of gender, sexuality, race, religion, and reproduction. A case study on sex education in the Netherlands serves to underscore the benefits of Comprehensive Sexuality Education for positive sexual outcomes and public health. As a component of Comprehensive Sexuality Education, consent education is capable of leading to changed awareness that can alter participation within capitalist patriarchy. The thesis includes a lesson plan that, framed in pedagogical theory, teaches consent in the context of pronouns, microaggressions, bystander intervention, and sexual pleasure, while offering comprehensive additional resources for Franklin & Marshall College students to aid in fostering a culture of consent. The thesis concludes by arguing that, although discourse is inherited, often exaggerating the effects of hegemonic expressions of capitalism and patriarchy, it can simultaneously transfer power to the individual, enabling awareness and changed understanding.