The contributors to
Amplified Voices, Intersecting Identities: First-Gen PhDs Navigating Institutional Power in Early Careers overcame deeply unequal educational systems to become the first in their families to finish college. Now, they are among the 3% of first-generation undergraduate students to go on to graduate school and then become faculty, in spite of structural barriers that worked against them.
These scholars write of socialization to the professoriate through the complex lens of intersectional identities of race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, ability and social class.
These first-generation graduate students have crafted critical narratives of the structural obstacles within higher education that stand in the way of brilliant scholars who are poor and working-class, Black, Indigenous, Latinx, Asian, immigrant, queer, white, women, or people with disabilities. They write of agency in creating defiant networks of support, of sustaining connections to family and communities, of their activism and advocacy on campus. They refuse to perpetuate the myths of meritocracy that reproduce the inequalities of higher education. In response to a research literature and to campus programming that frames their identities around “need”, they write instead of agentive and politicized intersectional identities as first-generation graduate students, committed to institutional change through their research, teaching, and service.
Contributors are: Veronica R. Barrios, Candis Bond, Beth Buyserie, Noralis Rodríguez Coss, Charise Paulette DeBerry, Janette Diaz, Alfred P. Flores, José García, Cynthia George, Shonda Goward, Luis Javier Pentón Herrera, Nataria T. Joseph, Castagna Lacet, Jennifer M. Longley, Catherine Ma, Esther Díaz Martín, Nadia Yolanda Alverez Mexia, T. Mark Montoya, Miranda Mosier, Michelle Parrinello-Cason, J. Michael Ryan, Adrián Arroyo Pérez, Will Porter, Jaye Sablan, Theresa Stewart-Ambo, Keisha Thompson, Ethan Trinh, Jane A. Van Galen and Wendy Champagnie Williams.
Jane A. Van Galen, PhD, is Professor Emeritus of Education at the University of Washington Bothell. She has authored multiple articles and co-edited two books on class, mobility, and education. She leads the First in Our Families digital storytelling project.
Jaye Sablan, MA, is Assistant Director of Graduate Student Affairs in The Graduate School at the University of Washington and leads the First-Gen Graduate Student Initiative. She is Native Chamorro, genderqueer, and first in family to go to college.
List of Figures
Notes on Contributors
Introduction: Amplified Voices, Intersecting Identities: First-Gen PhDs Navigating Institutional Power in Early Academic Careers
Jane A. Van Galen and Jaye Sablan
1 “Si pega, Bueno”: Testimonio of a First Generation Latinx Dual-Career Academic Couple Navigating Family and Profession
Esther Díaz Martín and José García 2 Writing as An Art of Rebellion: Scholars of Color Using Literacy to Find Spaces of Identity and Belonging in Academia
Ethan Trinh and Luis Javier Pentón Herrera 3 Telling Stories: Writing Ourselves into Academia
Miranda Mosier 4 Pathways, Pedagogy, and Pacific Islander Studies
Alfred P. Flores 5 Navigating Institutional Borderlands: An Inside Perspective from the Outside
T. Mark Montoya 6 Dear Native Students, with Love
Theresa Stewart-Ambo 7 Backbone Snacks
Charise P. DeBerry 8 The First
Veronica R. Barrios 9 Sister, Sister, Never Knew How Much I Missed Ya!
Catherine Ma and Keisha V. Thompson 10 “I Have Measured out My Life with Coffee Spoons”: On Time and Motherhood as a First-Generation PhD
Candis Bond 11 Yes, We Count: Weaving Fluid Identities of Disability and Sexuality into First-Gen Pedagogies
Beth Buyserie 12 From the Hood to Higher Ed: An Autoethnography of Race, Class, and Gender
Castagna Lacet and Wendy Champagnie Williams 13 Multiply Conscious and in Need of Divine Intervention
Nataria T. Joseph 14 The Long and the Short of It: Realities and Expectations of Landing and Losing a Dream Job
Michelle Parrinello-Cason 15 Surviving the Matrix: The Struggles of a Small Town Gay Kid to Become a Globe-Trotting Professional Academic
J. Michael Ryan 16 (In)visible (Dis)advantages: Being “One of the Boys” in Classical Music Performance
Will Porter 17 Re-Framing the Enemy within in Academia
Noralis Rodríguez Coss 18 Navigating Distances: From Sob Story to Educational Privilege
Janette Diaz 19 Finding My Voice
Jennifer M. Longley 20 Climbing Uphill
Nadia Yolanda Alvarez Mexia and Adrián Arroyo Pérez 21 First-Gens and Student Debt: Paying More While Getting Less
Cynthia George 22 Resilience and Grit Are for Rich People: How “Making It” through Higher Education Has Made Me Sick
Shonda L. Goward
Academic libraries, graduate students across disciplines, Student Affairs professionals, sociologists of education, mentors and advisors of graduate students, higher education faculty and staff working toward diversity and social justice.