Program spans disciplines across the Five Colleges and encompasses reproductive health care, welfare policy, gender justice, and adoption
The Five College Program in Reproductive Health, Rights, and Justice provides students an academic opportunity they can’t get elsewhere – it’s the only undergraduate certificate program of its kind in the country.
Established in 2015, the program ties in to courses in a variety of disciplines across the Five College Consortium and addresses such diverse issues as access to reproductive health care, welfare policy, gender justice, and adoption. It also connects students with campus-based centers and local and national organizations in policy and advocacy where they can perform internships and other hands-on learning opportunities.
But the program is about more than academics. “We hope to build community among students and faculty so people who care about the same things can find each other,” said Marlene Gerber Fried, Hampshire College professor of philosophy. Fried serves alongside Banu Subramaniam, professor of women, gender, and sexuality studies at the University of Massachusetts Amherst as program co-chairs.
Gerber Fried was speaking at a program reception hosted at Hampshire on November 7. “This valley, where the Five College consortium is based, is a hotbed of reproductive justice,” she said, “not just in terms of faculty and students who are interested, but also in having amazing anchoring institutions that supplement and complement the work of the program in so many ways.”
Sixty-five students participated in the program in its first year, and Gerber Fried says its faculty and staff are always interested in hearing from them “about whether there’s more we should be doing.”
The Five College Consortium consists of Amherst, Hampshire, Mount Holyoke, and Smith Colleges and the University of Massachusetts Amherst. It offers 17 certificate programs, among them Africana Studies, Ethnomusicology, Coastal and Marine Science, Cognitive Neuroscience, and International Relations.
To learn about the program, visit https://www.fivecolleges.edu/reproductive-health-rights-justice/.