Student Resources

Student Awards

Dr. Linda A. M. Perry Award for Outstanding Achievement and Dedication to the Women’s and Gender Studies Program

This award recognizes a senior Women’s and Gender Studies minor who demonstrates superior commitment to women’s and gender issues and application of the Women’s and Gender Studies minor to campus or community. It is named after Dr. Linda A.M. Perry, faculty member in the Department of Communications Studies at USD. Dr. Perry founded and co-directed the Gender Studies Program. She retired from USD in 1988 and died in 2012. According to Cynthia Caywood, Professor in the Department of English and a longtime colleague and co-director of the Gender Studies program with Dr. Perry, Linda “truly believed USD would be a better place by having a Women’s and Gender Studies program and a Women’s Center.” Dr. Caywood described Linda’s personality:

She was capable of being direct and fierce when something was wrong, but she had a great capacity, when faced with the difficulty of accomplishing something, to see the absurdity of either her reaction or reaction of the people who opposed her. She kept moving forward. She could laugh at herself or the situation. She didn’t get discouraged. She wasn’t resentful and she didn’t hold grudges. She’d find the humor in it, channel it and come back and try again.

The successful applicant for this award will possess Linda’s fire and determination.

Martha C. Watson Award for Academic Achievement in Women’s and Gender Studies

This award recognizes a junior or senior Women’s and Gender Studies minor who demonstrates outstanding academic achievement in the minor, as well as overall GPA. It is named after the mother of Dr. Lori Watson, director of the Women’s and Gender Studies Program from 2008 – 2015. Martha Watson holds R.N., B.S.N., and Master’s of Nursing (MSN) degrees with a specialization in Nursing Education as well as a Certification in Childbirth Education. Her educational path was non-traditional. She raised a family of three children before returning to college to pursue a nursing degree in her 30s. After receiving an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN), she worked as a nurse for 20 years. In her early 50s, she decided to return to school to earn her Bachelor’s of Science degree in Nursing and two Master’s degrees. She earned these degrees while working full-time as a Patient Care Director in Women’s and Children Services at Inova Health Systems in northern Virginia. She graduated summa cum laude, with a grade point average of 3.9 from both her Bachelor’s and Master’s programs. She not only represents outstanding academic performance, but she has dedicated her career to assisting women and children in providing superior care through pregnancy to birth and post-partum to all her patients. Now retired, she continues as a childbirth educator, providing classes to scores of women and their families in the birth-process, breast-feeding, and infant care. Her daughter, Dr. Lori Watson, is honored to establish this academic award in her name.

Undergraduate Research


Jennifer Castro Garcia

  • Major in Economics
  • Minor in Women’s and Gender Studies 
  • What the Recruiters Don't tell Your Daughters

Benson Delos Reyes

  • Major in Behavioral Neuroscience
  • Minor in Women’s and Gender Studies 
  • What Can I Look Up To?: An Exploration of Queer Film Representation

Margaret Gienko

  • Major in Political Science
  • Minor in Women’s and Gender Studies 
  • From One Gender Gap to Another: U.S. Women's Political Engagement

Allyan Haki

  • Major in Political Science
  • Minor in Women’s and Gender Studies 
  • "...for women are rights...": Patriarchal Interpretations and Feminist Reinterpretations of Islamic Scriptures

Amy Maltz

  • Major in Ethnic Studies
  • Minors in Theology and Religious Studies and Women’s and Gender Studies 
  • Heteropatriarchy or Healing?: Jewish Nationalism and Narratives of Identity 

Sam O'Brien

  • Major in Psychology
  • Minors in Women’s and Gender Studies 
  • Reasonable Womxn Fighting Words: Street Harassment and the First Amendment 


Melissa A. Padilla

  • Major in Political Science
  • Minor in Women’s and Gender Studies 
  • Beyond Ciudad Juarez: Feminicide through Mexico

Marguerite Nguyen Lehman

  • Major in Communication Studies
  • Minor in Women’s and Gender Studies
  • Gender N/A: Identity Disclosure in Activist Discourse and the ? Persona

Maria Jamil Dimachke

  • Major in Economics
  • Minor in Women's and Gender Studies
  • Real Beauty, Real Feminism, Real Growth

Study Abroad Opportunities

The Women's and Gender Studies Program offers unique opportunities to study abroad:

Interdisciplinary Minors at USD

The University of San Diego offers a broad range of Interdisciplinary, academic minors. All but one are housed in the College of Arts and Sciences, the minor in Peace Studies being the one exception. That minor is coordinated with the Joan B. Kroc School for Peace and Justice

Interdisciplinary minors include: