Welcome From the Chair

“The classroom, with all its limitations, remains a location of possibility. In that field of possibility, we have the opportunity to labor for freedom, to demand of ourselves and our comrades, an openness of mind and heart that allows us to face reality even as we collectively imagine ways to move beyond boundaries, to transgress. This is education as the practice of freedom.”

––bell hooks, Teaching to Transgress: Education as the Practice of Freedom, 1994

Greetings! My name is Amber Rose González and I’m the chair of the Ethnic Studies Department at Fullerton College. As a womxn of color and a first-generation college student, I experienced the ethnic studies classroom as this place of possibility described by bell hooks. It was a place to recover the stories that had been hidden or misrepresented in my K-12 public education. It was a place to dig deep, to be introspective and critical, a place to explore and cultivate my worldviews and my ethical commitments, and it provided me something I had not experienced before: the capacity to imagine a society different––better––than the one I had inherited. It allowed me to bring my whole self into the classroom: my intellectual self, my emotional, spiritual, and cultural self. For the first time in my life, I saw myself meaningfully reflected on the pages of an academic text. This type of education was indeed the practice of freedom. As an educator and professor of Ethnic Studies, my primary goal is to cultivate spaces of hope and possibility for my students. We don’t just theorize about racism, patriarchy, heteronormativity, nativism, capitalism, and other intersecting structures of power––we deconstruct the meanings of these concepts and examine how they manifest in our bodies and in society. Most importantly, we envision what we want in their place. We think deeply about what it means to create social change. I invite you to take a class in Ethnic Studies at FC and to explore our majors. My hope is that you will also be empowered and empathetic and brave and that you too will know education as the practice of freedom. Paz & Solidarity, Dr. G

Original Artwork by Gabrielle Romero, Fullerton College Ethnic Studies Major