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Home > Academics > Undergraduate >
Ethnic Studies

Ethnic Studies Events Fall 2014

Ethnic Studies Town Hall Meeting
12:15 pm, Wednesday, October 15, 2014
Faculty Staff Lounge

We invite you to share your ideas with faculty and staff. This is your opportunity to participate in decision-making, planning and advocacy for the Department. We will share about the Department's 5-year review, and the upcoming National Association of Ethnic Studies conference. We value your input! Topics for discussion may include the curriculum, classroom experiences, advising, heritage months and Pow Wow, transfer students’ experiences, ES promo, community building and other Ethnic Studies activities.

Open to all Ethnic Studies (and prospective) majors and minors. All are welcome!

Pizza will be provided! We look forward to seeing you!

Ethnic Studies Graduate School Workshop
12:15-1:00 pm, Tuesday, October 7, 2014
Faculty Staff Lounge

Thinking about applying to graduate school or law school? Want to find out how to make your application stand out?

Join us as we welcome back Mills College graduates:

Toni McElroy, Class of 1983, 2005, 2013, Ethnic Studies and Educational Leadership
Toni enrolled at Mills in 1978 and obtained double BA degrees in Administration and the Legal Processes and Ethnic Studies in 1983. She returned to Mills in 2003 and completed a Masters in Educational Leadership. Toni arrived back on the Mills Campus in 2009 to follow her dream to obtain a Doctorate in Educational Leadership–graduating in 2013. She currently works for the Oakland Unified School District.

Carolyn Kraus, Class of 2008, UC Berkeley-UCSF Joint Medical Program
Carolyn is a mixed heritage Anishinaabekwe (Sault Ste. Marie Ojibwe) who grew up in Honolulu, Hawaii and rural Michigan. She moved to California in 2003 to attend Mills College, where she studied Ethnic Studies. She is committed to transformative social justice including racial justice, indigenous liberation, and health/healing justice. In her various community roles she has been a protest organizer, peer counselor, and traditional drummer. Carolyn’s passion for healthcare was first sparked when she co-organized the 2005 DIY Health Fair in Detroit. After graduating from Mills College in 2008, she became the Assistant Director of Native American AIDS Project in San Francisco and later served on the Board of Directors. Carolyn continued her work in healthcare for underserved populations as the Program Coordinator for the Women’s HIV Program at UCSF, where she honed her grant writing skills and developed an interest in research related to trauma in communities of color.

Fatimah Salahuddin, Class of 2014, currently enrolled in the 4+1 program in Education
Fatimah Salahuddin is a first-generation African-American undergraduate student majoring in Ethnic Studies. As a Bay Area native she is also a former City College of San Francisco (CCSF) transfer student with a long history of social justice activism and equity advocacy within her community.
During her first semester at Mills College she was one of three students nominated for the Harry S. Truman Scholarship for students who posses a commitment to a career in public service. In addition, she became the first (and only) Half the Sky Movement Campus Ambassador at Mills for the book and PBS documentary series "Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide," which was the class reader for her incoming class. In this role she organized and hosted over 7 screenings of the documentary throughout the Bay Area to spread awareness on women's rights. She has also acted as a guest lecturer at her former school, CCSF, in courses ranging from African-American History to Interdisciplinary courses in Sexism and Agism/Adultism. Since Spring 2013 Fatimah has also fulfilled the role of a Research Assistant for the Black Women Birthing Justice project under the supervision of Dr. Julia C. Oparah. Currently, she has been appointed to co-author and publish an article with her department chair for DataCenter: Research for Social Change and has played a significant role in the organizing and success of the 42nd Annual National Association of Ethnic Studies conference that was held at Mills College earlier this month.
Her research interest involve urban education and literacy, Black feminist theory, research justice, socio-cultural constructions of learning and educational equity. Fatimah will continue here at Mills in the accelerated dual-degree, 4+1 Program to receive her Master of Arts in Education with an Emphasis in Teaching and a Single-Subject Credential in English.

They will share successful strategies for applying to graduate school.

Inés C. Barbosa, Interim Director of Career Services, will also share her knowledge on submitting applications to graduate schools.

Moderated by Professor Vivian Chin.

Building Gender Justice: From the Prison to the Classroom
A conversation with CeCe McDonald, Miss Major, Julia Chinyere Oparah, Joyelle Baker and Sonj Basha

Monday September 22, 2014
7:00–9:00 pm
Mills College Student Union
Free and Open to the Public

How does gender violence and injustice show up in the classroom, the street and the criminal justice system? How can we work together to combat multiple levels of violence and exclusion? How can we become advocates and allies in the struggle for racial and gender justice for all?

CeCe McDonald was imprisoned for defending herself against a racist, transphobic assault in July, 2010.Cece McDonald Due to her willingness to fight, supporters and activists in Minneapolis and across the US built up a solidarity campaign to demand her freedom, and were able to win her a reduced sentence. After serving a 17-month term, she was released in January 2014. After being released CeCe quickly became a leading and outspoken fighter in the movements for LGBTQ liberation, prison abolition, and racial justice. She is currently working on a forthcoming documentary with actress Laverne Cox on her case, “Free CeCe.” She was the Grand Marshall of Seattle Pride this year, she received the Bayard Rustin Civil Rights award, and has spoken on Democracy Now!, MSNBC, and various other media outlets.

Miss Major is a black, formerly incarcerated, transgender elder. She has been an activist and advocate in her community for over forty years. She was at the Stonewall uprising in 1969, became politicized at Attica, was an original member of the first all-transgender gospel choir, and is a father, mother, grandmother, and grandfather to her own children, and to many in the transgender community. Currently, Miss Major is the Executive Director of TGI Justice where she instills hope and a belief in a better future to the girls that are currently incarcerated and those coming home.

Julia Chinyere Oparah is Chair of Ethnic Studies at Mills College. She was a founding collective member of Critical Resistance, and has worked with Incite! Women of Color Against Violence, Toronto Prisoner Justice Action Committee, Black Women Birthing Justice and many other social justice organizations. She is author of Global Lockdown: Race, Gender and the Prison-Industrial Complex, and recently authored a series of articles that seek to dismantle the gender binary within feminist prison studies.

Sonj Basha is a senior at Mills College majoring in Womens, Gender, and Sexuality studies with an emphasis on Queer studies. She is also on the fastrack program to complete an MBA in 2016. Sonj is also a co-founder and community facilitator for an organization called BRAVESPACE focusing on empowerment workshops and community building for marginalized identities to call forth our highest selves in transforming our planet. You can catch Sonj speaking on a Gender, Culture, and Sexual Health panel at this years National Bioneers Conference.

Joyelle Baker is a Harlem-raised poet and anti-black racism activist, President of Mills College Black Women’s Collective, and co-founder and Vice President of Mills College In Living Queer--a campus collective that seeks to support and give voice to all LGBTQ* students of color, joining in solidarity with allies. She is currently a Junior at Mills College with a double Major in English Creative Writing and Economics. She works to uplift people, especially those experiencing life on the margins, through writing and spoken word performance. She hopes to use the economics knowledge that she gains to educate and help girls and women of color navigate gender and racial inequity in our world and enable them to achieve economic advancement and financial stability. This past summer, Joyelle held an internship with the Bay Area Urban Project, working with Oakland Freedom Schools and helping to instill in black and brown youth a love for literacy and cultural pride.

Sponsored by Mills College Ethnic Studies Department, Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies Department, Black Women’s Collective, In Living Queer, Mouthing Off, and LGBTQ Alumnae.

Program Information

Faculty and Staff


Full Course List

Ethnic Studies Course List

Schedule of Courses for
the Current Semester

Activities & Resources

Message from the Chair

National Association for Ethnic Studies Conference

What Can I do with an Ethnic Studies Degree?

Meet Ethnic Studies Alumnae

Latina Heritage Month

Native American Heritage Month

Black History Month

Pow Wow

SAMEAPI Awareness Now!

Ethnic Studies


Ethnic Studies Fund

Womanist Journal

Women of Color Resource Center

Diversity at Mills


Contact Information

P: 510.430.2080
F: 510.430.2067

Last Updated: 10/15/14