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CWGS Faculty Development Program

The Center for Women's & Gender Studies is pleased to present our Faculty Development Program. This program is designed to assist in recruitment, retention and promotion of new faculty members by providing them with support of various kinds, including mentors and research funding.

Our goal is to welcome, inform and support our new colleagues. The faculty selected are outstanding young scholars who work in gender studies. We are very pleased to have them as members of the university community.

During the academic year, all of the participants give presentations in the Faculty Development Program Speaker Series. CWGS encourages interested faculty and students from the university community to attend the colloquium series to learn about and engage with the latest research in gender studies from across campus.

This program is part of a broader effort by CWGS to facilitate interdisciplinary research on campus by bringing together scholars trained in different methodologies and disciplinary traditions around a common theme. When interdisciplinary groups of scholars form broader intellectual communities, it also increases the likelihood that these scholars will go on to have successful research and become long standing members of our faculty.

To see a list of past FDP Fellows, click here.

The 2017-2018 Faculty Development Program participant bios and Colloquium Schedule:

December 5, 2017 - Balbir Singh (CWGS Embrey Postdoctoral Fellow)

Balbir K. Singh arrives in Austin from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, where she was Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Research Associate in the Department of Asian American Studies, as well as Postdoctoral Affiliate with the Department of Gender and Women’s Studies. Prior to Illinois, Balbir received her PhD in English at the University of Washington in 2016 under the direction of Chandan Reddy. Currently, Balbir is at work on her first book, “Militant Bodies,” which looks at the visual culture and body politics of Muslims and Sikhs under the rise of global Islamophobia. Her scholarly and teaching interests include comparative racialized religions, transnational feminist studies, visual culture, anti-colonial and anti-imperial thought, and queer studies. She has published articles for the journals Sikh Formations and Critical Ethnic Studies, as well as sites including Z-NetDissident Voice, and Truthout. Her latest essay, “The Commodity Fetish of Modest Fashion” is out this October in QED: A Journal of GLBTQ World-Making

January 30, 2018 - Yasmiyn Irizarry (Department of African and African Diaspora Studies) 

Dr. Yasmiyn Irizarry is quantitative sociologist by training with research interests in (1) sociology of education, (2) race and ethnicity, (3) sexuality and queer studies, (4) social inequality, and (5) intersectionality. Her research, which examines issues related to inequality in elementary and high school contexts, racial identity, the quantitative measurement of race, social attitudes, and prejudice and discrimination, has been supported by funding from the Ford Foundation and the American Educational Research Association. She is currently working on research supported by a Research Grant from the American Educational Research Association that focuses on disparities in 9th grade math course placements at the intersection of race and gender using nationally representative data from the High School Longitudinal Study of 2009. She is also engaged in a number of collborative studies examining various aspects of racial identity, racial attitudes, and prejudice/discrimination.

February 13, 2018 - Fikile Nxumalo (Department of Curriculum and Instruction, College of Education)

Fikile Nxumalo (Ph.D., University of Victoria) is an Assistant Professor of Early Childhood Education in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction. She is also affiliated faculty (by courtesy) in the Department of African and African Diaspora Studies and the Native American and Indigenous Studies Program. Her scholarship focuses on reconceptualizing place-based and environmental education within current times of ecological precarity. This scholarship, which is published in journals including Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood, International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, and Environmental Humanities, is rooted in perspectives from Indigenous knowledges, Black feminist geographies, and posthumanist theories. Drawing from her experience as a pedagogical facilitator in early learning settings, Fikile is also interested in participatory and action-oriented research approaches with in-service early childhood educators. Fikile is passionate about inquiry-based curriculum in early childhood education, which is the focus of her co-authored book Journeys: Reconceptualizing early childhood practices through pedagogical narration (University of Toronto Press, 2014).

February 2, 2018 - Karma Chávez (Department of Mexican American and Latina/o Studies) 

Karma R. Chávez is an associate professor in the Department of Mexican American and Latina/o Studies at the University of Texas - Austin. She is co-editor of Text + Field: Innovations in Rhetorical Method (with Sara McKinnon, Robert Asen and Robert Glenn Howard, Penn State Press, 2016), Standing in the Intersection: Feminist Voices, Feminist Practices in Communication Studies (with Cindy L. Griffin, SUNY Press, 2012), and author of Queer Migration Politics: Activist Rhetoric and Coalitional Possibilities (University of Illinois Press, 2013). Karma is also a member of the radical queer collective Against Equality, a former organizer for LGBT Books to Prisoners, and for four years, was a host of the radio program, "A Public Affair" on Madison's community radio station, 89.9 FM WORT. For years, Karma has worked closely with several community organizations on issues surrounding queer, racial, economic and immigrant justice.

March 6, 2018 - Mónica A. Jiménez (Department of African and African Diaspora Studies)

Mónica A. Jiménez is an historian and an assistant professor in the African and African Diaspora Studies Department. Her teaching and research explores the intersections of law, race and nationalism in U.S. empire building in Latin America and the Caribbean. She is particularly concerned with the role that law has played in the creation of the relationship between the United States and its island colony of Puerto Rico. Her book manuscript, American State of Exception, offers a legal history of race and exception in United States empire building and centers on the place of Puerto Rico within that larger historical trajectory. Dr. Jiménez has received fellowships in support of her work from the Ford Foundation, the Puerto Rican Studies Association, the Institute for Global Law and Policy at Harvard Law School, and the University of Texas at Austin.

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