Grant Will Fund Women’s Rights Initiative at The University of Texas at Austin

May 6, 2010

AUSTIN, Texas — The Center for Women's and Gender Studies (CWGS) at The University of Texas at Austin has received a $450,000 grant from the Embrey Family Foundation to develop a Women's Human Rights Initiative that will promote teaching, research and activism in the areas of women's rights and human rights.

The five-year grant will allow CWGS to develop new courses for University of Texas at Austin students, develop a curriculum and teacher training program for high school classes around the state and host an international women's rights conference in May 2012.

"This is a tremendous opportunity for the Center for Women's and Gender Studies," says CWGS Director Susan Sage Heinzelman. "We will offer the community, both on and off campus, a vigorous debate about the causes of women's rights abuses and begin to generate solutions that might lead to systemic and sustainable change around the world."

As part of the initiative, CWGS will offer scholarships for up to five international graduate students to study at the university each year, helping to spread knowledge about women's and human rights issues around the world.

CWGS will also develop up to 10 signature courses for undergraduates that would each be taught by multiple faculty members from different disciplines. A signature course is designed to introduce undergraduates to academic discussion and analysis of world issues from an interdisciplinary perspective.

Using grant money, faculty will look for ways to infuse women's rights and human rights issues into the curricula of other courses.

The planned women's rights conference will allow the university community to hear from those on the front line of the struggle for rights around the world.

"The new Women's Rights Initiative will allow The University of Texas at Austin to become one of the premier sites in the country for inquiry into women's rights issues," says Randy L. Diehl, dean of the College of Liberal Arts, which is home to CWGS.

The Dallas-based Embrey Family Foundation was established in 2004 by J. Lindsay Embrey. The foundation champions the well-being and rights of all people by supporting programs that advance human rights, healthy communities, education and artistic creativity.

For more information, contact: Gary Susswein, Office of the President, 512-471-4945; Nancy Ewert, CWGS, 512-471-5680.

5 Comments to "Grant Will Fund Women’s Rights Initiative at The University of Texas at Austin"

1.  Chandler Lane said on May 7, 2010

Question: Where is the course in men's studies and the grants for that? Don't men deserve the same things as women? Or are men just second-class citizens?

2.  Joe C. Freeman said on May 13, 2010

This is not academic work -- this is political and should not be a part of any university. That UT would accept the grant reminds me why I no longer donate to UT but support real academic programs at other universities.

UT Architecture, 1971

3.  Luis F. Rivas said on May 14, 2010

"Using grant money, faculty will look for ways to infuse women's rights and human rights issues into the curricula of other courses." I am concerned about this particular objective of the women's rights initiative. I don't agree that gender politics should spread its web over the rest of UT academia, especially those courses that are in no way connected to the study of human rights, history or politics.

4.  Larry Gerst said on May 14, 2010

I am OK with a lot of things, especially if the focus of the grant is on women's rights in regions of the world where women have traditionally been treated poorly. What WOULD upset me: advocacy of abortion at home or abroad.

5.  Carrie Elsass said on May 16, 2010

Hopeful that "women's rights" is truly in regard to basic rights and humanity, not feminism and abortion access.