Awards & Prizes

The George C. Casey Prize

Amy, Ashley, KaseyThe George C. Casey Prize awards $300 for the best undergraduate essay on any topic relating to the situation of gender and society. Papers written in any course, in any department or program within the university are eligible. Papers may not exceed 4,000 words, excluding notes and bibliography, and must be accompanied by a memo from the instructor of the course for which the paper was written attesting to the student's enrollment. Papers from Spring 2015, Fall 2015 and Winter 2016 are eligible for this year's Casey Prize. The deadline for this year's Casey Prize has already passed. Please check back here for information about next year's prize.

The 2016 Casey Prize was awarded to Bex Ehrmann for "Lust in Translation: Examining Helena’s Desire for Hermia."

The Betty Jo Teeter Dobbs Prize

The Betty Jo Teeter Dobbs Prize is given to an outstanding senior thesis written in the Gender & Sexuality Studies Program. The 2016 Dobbs Prize was awarded to Sarah Moss for her thesis "Recuperating Monique Wittig through the 'Site of Action'."

Past Dobbs Thesis Award recipients include:

2015 - Bea Sullivan-Knoff, for her thesis: "Shaping Bodies, Shaping Society: German Trans Law, the Effects of Socialization and Sex-Amending Legislation on Body Image and Health in the Trans Community."

2014 - Elyssa Cherney, for her thesis: "Kumari Worship in a Global World: Transnational Feminism and Nepal's Living Goddess." 

2012 - Maggie Birkel, for her thesis: "Sin City South: Women's Sexuality in Unexamined Social Histories of New Orleans, 1965-1975" and Jennifer Piemonte, for her thesis: "Competing Norms: An Investigation of Sexual Scripts and the Double Standard in the College Campus Hookup Culture." 

2011 - Samantha Turner, for her thesis:  "Can't Get No Satisfaction: Feminist Responses to the Biomedicalization of Female Sexual Dysfunction."

2010 - Margaret Pke, for her thesis entitled "Something To Get Off My Chest: Bras & Binders in the Construction of Genders."

2009 - Ashley Keyser, for her thesis entitled "Songs of Exceeding the Self: Mark Doty's Queer Visionary Poetics"

2008 - Katherine Gorringe, for her thesis entitled “When She Sings, I Hear Revolution: Radical Feminist Demands on Women in Popular Music, 1969-1973.”

2007 - Jessica Mathiason, for her thesis entitled "Trans Hollywood Blockbusters and the Genital Reveal."

2006 - Abigail Rogosheske, for her thesis entitled "Pineapples and Politics: Ugandan Women and the Road to Empowerment."

2005 - Thanh Nguyen, a senior History/Gender Studies Major, won both the 2005 George C. Casey Prize for best undergraduate essay and the 2005 Dobbs Prize her thesis, entitled "Beyond Borders: Brides, Grooms, & Brokers in Viet-Dai Marriages."

Gender & Sexuality Studies honors theses are available for reading and check-out in the Gender & Sexuality Studies Library.

The Rae Arlene Moses Leadership Award

In honor of her career-long dedication to women at Northwestern, the Gender & Sexuality Studies Program, along with its affiliates and friends, established the Rae Arlene Moses Leadership Award in Gender & Sexuality Studies. The award is presented each spring to a graduating senior who has fostered initiatives and demonstrated leadership, both within the classroom and in co-curricular activities sponsored by the Gender & Sexuality Studies program. The 2016 Rae Arlene Moses Leadership Award was awarded to Tristan Chiruvolu. 

Past Moses Leadership Award recipients include:

2015 - Elizabeth Bohl

2014 - Tessa Owens

2013 - Camille Beredjick and Tristan Powell

2012 - Cat Hammond

2011 - Jodi Savitz

2010 - Chistine Stiehl and Margaret Pike

2008 - Sharlyn Grace

2007 - Julie Keller and Jessica Mathiason

2006 - Corey Robinson

2005 - Annie Lee

Honors in Gender Studies

Gender & Sexuality Studies majors can choose to write a thesis in their senior year. Outstanding theses are awarded honors by the Gender & Sexuality Studies Honors Committee. The thesis that was awarded honors in 2016 was:

Sarah Moss, "Recuperating Monique Wittig throug the 'Site of Action'."

2015 honors theses included:

  • Elizabeth Bohl, "Problematizing Victimhood: The failure of the state and the commercial sexual exploitation of minors"
  • Emily Karpinski, "The Apatow Bromance as a Rearticulation of Masculinity"
  • Jennifer Katz, "Hook Up and Rape ‘Cultures’: Recovering Power Relations in the Discourse of Sexual Assault on College Campuses"
  • Emily Mannheimer, "From Wishes to Princes: Disney’s Response to Popular Notions of Feminism in the Production of Princess Films"
  • Bea Sullivan-Knoff, "Shaping Bodies, Shaping Society: German Trans Law, the Effects of Socialization and Sex-Amending Legislation on Body Image and Health in the Trans Community"

2014 honors theses included:

  • Elyssa Cherney, "Kumari Worship in a Global World: Transnational Feminism and Nepal's Living Goddess" 
  • Samantha Sainsbury, "Fulfillment, Regulation, and Moderation: Defining the sex-positive community on edenfantasys.com" 
  • Riley Smith, "Navigating Healthcare from the Margins: Healthcare experiences of lesbian and bisexual women in Cape Town, South Africa" 

2013 honors theses included:

  • Camille Beredjick, "Pride and Politics:The Sociopolitical Implications of Gay Pride Parades"
  • Jeff Cattel, "Seeing Ellen in Frank Ocean: Assessing the Legibliity of Celebrity Comings Out"
  • Zach Wichter, "Gay YouTube: Gay Appropriation of Queer Identity on Campus"

2012 honors theses included:

  • Maggie Birkel, "Sin City South: Women’s Sexuality in Unexamined Social Histories of New Orleans, 1965-1975"
  • Jennifer Piemonte, "Competing Norms: An Investigation of Sexual Scripts and the Double Standard in the College Campus Hookup Culture"

2011 honors theses included:

  • Jodi Savitz, "A 'Haute' Shade of Lipstick: Locating a Femme-Centric Community of Latina Lesbians in Miami, Florida"
  • Samantha Turner, "Can't Get No Satisfaction: Feminist Responses to the Biomedicalization of Female Sexual Dysfunction"

2010 honors theses included:

  • Samuel Levy, "The Post-capitalist Turn: Feminist Materialism and Subcultural Politics"
  • Keith Miller, "Krumping and Voguing As A Means to an End: A New Outlook on Dance, Identity Politics, the Creation of Safe Space, and the Transformative Politics of Spirituality"
  • Margaret Pike, "Something To Get Off My Chest: Bras and Binders in the Construction of Genders"
  • Rachel Rys, "The Category "Queer": or How do we Construct Infidel Heteroglossias in the Globalized Genderscape?"

2009 honors thesis was:

  • Ashley Keyser, "Songs of Exceeding the Self: Mark Doty's Queer Visionary Poetics."

2008 honors theses included:

  • Katherine Gorringe, “When She Sings, I Hear Revolution: Radical Feminist Demands on Women in Popular Music, 1969-1973.”

2007 honors theses included:

  • Jessica Mathiason, "Trans Hollywood Blockbusters and the Genital Reveal"
  • Rupali Sharma, "Colonial Myths, Gendered Realities and Hyphenated Identities: An Analysis of Muslim-American Women's Veiling Practices after 9/11"
  • Poornima Yechoor, "Can the HIV-postive Hindu Woman Speak?: Sex, Tradition, and AIDS in Contemporary Bollywood Cinema"

All of these excellent theses are available for reading in the Gender & Sexuality Studies library.