Common Questions

1.) What does WXGS stand for?
  • WXGS stands for Women and Gender Services. The X stands for "and". 
2.) How do you pronounce WXGS?
  • Wags.
3.) Is the Cheney Room a part of WXGS?
  • Yes! The Cheney Room is the physical location and student space that WXGS oversees.
4.) How can I access the Cheney Room?
  • Please fill out the Cheney Room Tap Access form. To help with the volume of applicants that get manually added to the door tap system, all applicants will be added in batches. If a school holiday falls on those days the applicants will get added the next business day.
5.) What does WXGS do/offer?
  • We oversee the Cheney Room which is the physical center of Women and Gender Services. We put on programs and events, educational workshops, lunch and learns with partnering offices, manage student space reservations for the Cheney Room, financial resources for professional development and conferences, and so much more through an intersectional lens along identities such as: race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, first gen status, disability, religious/spirituality, and more.
6.) What does "woman identifying" mean?
  • "Women identifying" is a broad category to indicate gender diverse students who may identify all or part of the time as women or with the experiences of being coded as a woman. These may be genders such as: demigirl, non-binary woman, genderfluid, bi-gender, gender questioning, etc It's a way to specifically highlight to students you are welcome here in these spaces, and these are resources and programs for you here.
7.) I'm a transgender woman, can I be in the Cheney Room?
  • Yes! Trans women are women. WXGS is a space for all women and non-binary students. If you are interested in being a part of the space, attending programs, or using resources centered on the nuanced and diverse experiences of gender then come on in

8.) I'm a cisgender woman, is this space still for me?
  • Yes! We are here to support and empower all women and non-binary students. Gender is nuanced and complex, we want to make sure our programs, culture, language, and policies reflect and affirm that complexity so that all those who use our services feel comfortable and seen. We're just highlighting that we mean all women and those who resonate with woman (label, experience, etc.) in some way. The Cheney Room is a women's center and the programs/events we do are centered around those experiences and identities while also making space for those who hold additional marginalized gender identities.
9.) I'm non-binary, can I be in this space?
  • Yes! Our art put up around the space includes artists by non-binary people (AFAB and AMAB represented), our library also includes non-binary authors and topics and our programs are also inclusive of non-binary individuals. You do not have to look a certain way or be a certain way or "prove" that you're non-binary to be in the space that welcomes marginalized identities.


"I came out as nonbinary recently. I didn't identify as a woman anymore but I had a community of women I still wanted to be a part of in some way. Having the Cheney Room as a space I can still go to has helped. I don't always relate to everything, and sometimes I feel imposter syndrome, but there are things I experience that other students in the Cheney Room can understand. I'm glad I don't have to lose that connection as I figure out what spaces feel the best for me, you know?"

- Grad Student, `26


10.) Who oversees WXGS and the Cheney Room?
  • Lauryn McNair (she/they), Assistant Dean of LBGTQ+ and Women and Gender Services as well as Nandini S. Choudhury (She/Hers), Assistant Director for Women and Gender Services. Nandini's office is located inside the Cheney Room. If you're interested in learning more about WXGS please email them at: wxgs@mit.edu
11.) How do I reserve space in the Cheney Room?
  • Students and student groups who use the Cheney Room can reserve space in the Cheney Room that aligns with the purpose and mission of the center through the Cheney Room Space Reservation form.