College of Humanities
2020-21 College of Humanities Dean’s Scholar, Tereza Abelian
Congratulations to the 2020-21 College of Humanities Dean’s Scholar, Tereza Abelian, who will graduate this Spring with a major in Honor’s English and a minor in Business Law.
During her tenure at CSUN, Abelian’s academic excellence served as a solid foundation for a myriad of notable accomplishments. In addition to maintaining a 3.9 GPA for every semester, Abelian worked as a supplemental instructor for freshman English students. The experience of helping others along their educational paths helped to more clearly define her own academic goals. “Looking back, the (supplemental instructor) position taught me how to lead a classroom, cater to various students’ needs, successfully teach critical thinking skills, and the importance of mentorship,” Abelian says. “And showed me that mentoring and serving is truly my passion.”
At the request of one of her Law professors, she also accepted a position on campus as a Business Law Tutor. Capitalizing on the skills developed there, she now volunteers in the Justice Corps program through AmeriCorps in Los Angeles where she provides assistance to self-represented litigants; predominantly those who cannot afford attorneys.
Abelian was awarded the Eva Latif Writing Prize for her essay, “Agency and Labor within I Was a Rat!” The annual prize is awarded to the best piece of writing, critical or creative, by a student on the subject of children’s literature. Professor Charles Hatfield responded to Abelian’s work, saying, “Thoughtful, complex, and elegantly written, the essay pulled together and synthesized various sources with aplomb. It was the kind of essay that Literature teachers long to read and discuss with students: a performance showing care, skill, and daring.” Abelian was also selected as the 2021 Wolfson Scholar Candidate from the College of Humanities.
In and out of the classroom, Abelian has an ever-growing love of literature and is also an accomplished artist. The future is undeniably bright for this year’s College of Humanities Dean’s Scholar, and we know that the world will benefit from her drive to succeed and her desire to give back. We are proud to add the name Tereza Abelian to our list of highly esteemed graduates.
Justice for George Floyd
I watched with trepidation as we awaited the verdict in Derek Chauvin’s trial for the murder of George Floyd. The jurors had deliberated for such a short time that I feared it would result in an acquittal, as has happened so often before, even in the face of what seems to be overwhelming video evidence. Disbelief and relief washed over me as the verdict was announced and I watched the faces in the crowds of people gathered in solidarity to await the outcome.
There were tears and cheers and hugging, but the celebration, of course, is tempered by harsh facts. As President Beck noted in her message, this verdict will not bring George Floyd back to life and it does not “erase the trauma and pain caused by centuries of systemic racism.”
This collective, historic trauma means that we will all be experiencing the outcome differently. For many, the intensity and complexity of this moment may be overwhelming, particularly given the ongoing violence targeting people of color. I urge you to take care of yourself and for all of us to take care of each other in these difficult times.
Below are some resources that you might find helpful. Meanwhile, please remember that at times like this it is particularly important to remind ourselves that we can find strength in solidarity and collective purpose. All of us in the Dean’s office are here to help in any way that we can.
With best wishes for peace and love,
Jackie E. Stallcup
College of Humanities
University Counseling services: https://www.csun.edu/counseling
During business hours: (818) 677-2366 option 1
Outside business hours: (818) 677-2366 option 3
CSUN with a heart: https://www.csun.edu/heart
Wellness Coaching is available at the Klotz Student Health Center. Please call (818) 677-3666 to schedule an appointment.
Resources on self-care from the MDECoE:
CSUN faculty and staff can also access the Employee Assistance Program, which provides confidential support services at no cost. Call LifeMatters at 1-800-367-7474 or log on to www.mylifematters.com (sign-in code: Matadors).
College of Humanities Statement of Solidarity with AAPI Community
The College of Humanities grieves with the families and friends of the eight victims of the mass murder that took place in Atlanta on March 16.
Xiaojie Tan. Daoyou Feng. Soon Chung Park. Hyun Jung Grant. Suncha Kim. Yong Ae Yue. Delaina Ashley Yaun. Paul Andre Michels
Of the eight lives lost in the horrific attacks, six of them were Asian American women. Women who were mothers, sisters, aunts, friends, colleagues, neighbors. Women who were the target of anti-Asian, misogynistic violence.
We cannot ignore the fact that there have been nearly 3800 documented violent crimes against Americans of Asian descent—primarily women—in just the last year. We cannot ignore the rhetoric of hatred, racism and violence that has fueled these crimes. We cannot ignore the ways in which this rhetoric is rooted in a toxic intersection of racism, sexism, hypersexualization, misogyny, imperialism, militarism, and violence.
And we cannot continue to elide the fact that Anti-Asian hate is entwined with the history of our country, from the Chinese Exclusion Act (1882); to the anti-Chinese riots of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries; the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II; the mass shooting in Stockton that targeted Asian American children (1989); the murders of Vincent Chin (1982), Navroze Mody (1987) and Joseph Ileto (1999); and many other examples.
But violence against the AAPI community has far too often been rendered invisible: ignored, treated as something from the distant past, or attributed to causes other than racism—as we have seen even today in the “debate” over the motivation for the Atlanta attacks.
Our Asian American Studies department, founded in 1990, has been dedicated since its earliest days to fighting for social justice and empowering our graduates to go out and transform the world. As a college, we redouble our commitment to supporting the faculty and students in this department in reaching for this vital goal in such troubled times.
An important part of our mission as a college is to “Act as responsible global citizens committed to principles of freedom, equality, justice and participatory democracy.”
We must work together as a college and as a university to live up to this goal through such actions as:
- Supporting programming and curriculum that educates all of us on this history of AAPI communities in the US
- Offering visible and vocal support for all of our AAPI colleagues and students
- Calling out xenophobia, racism and harassment wherever it is exhibited
- Amplifying and valuing the diverse and unique stories that are woven into the American tapestry.
- Working to enact systemic changes that lead toward racial justice and empowerment for all
The College of Humanities unequivocally condemns anti-Asian racism and stands in solidarity with all in the Asian American/Pacific Islander communities.
Welcome to Humanities
As education becomes ever more focused on professional degrees and vocational training, employers increasingly report that what they seek is not necessarily more specialized degrees but rather people who can think, who can synthesize, who can analyze, and who can apply a broad base of thought to a wide variety of areas. The College of Humanities teaches students to read, write and think. Our graduates are prepared for a 21st-century workforce that advances those who have the power not just to achieve and innovate but to communicate their ideas to an audience beyond their applied field.