Faculty Profile: Dr. Jocelyn Boryczka

Submitted by Web Communications on September 14, 2006

I think classes should give you the freedom to think seriously about ideas. I also think they should rock.

Dr. Jocelyn Boryczka

Title: Assistant Professor of Politics and Director

School: College of Arts & Sciences

Program: Peace and Justice Studies


One Possible reason she was teacher of the year

I think classes should give you the freedom to think seriously about ideas. I also think they should rock.

how, exactly, they rock

I teach a class called “The Politics of Race, Class, and Gender.” We made graffiti art, had rap battles, breakdanced – not just because it’s cool, but because it critically engages the material. We address problems from a very serious perspective, but we also allow ourselves the freedom, the imagination to think beyond the obvious answers, to imagine the possibilities.

another example of rocking

In my “Introduction to Feminism” class, I’ll have students work in small groups to share their knowledge with the community. They’ve run self-defense classes, gathered goods to send to servicewomen in Iraq – incredible stuff. One group organized a show in a campus gallery featuring student artwork about social issues. It turned into a big party – food, music, interactive exhibits. Amazing.

best way to spend $1,500

Diversity Grants. Groups of students can apply to receive money to support projects that promote social justice and enhance diversity on campus. I worked with a group that put together a campus-wide women’s day, dealing with body image. They were thinking about diversity in complicated ways that go beyond skin color. This is creative, exciting work. It’s also a way to put students at the center of the University. Their ideas matter. That’s inspiring.

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