Three images: Study abroad student group. A masked student holds an infant. Graduate student Amanda Hussein.

Message from the Director


It is my pleasure to welcome you to the third annual newsletter of the School of Languages, Cultures, and Race at WSU. This is a bittersweet moment for me, as it is the last time I will write this message as director of SLCR. However, I’m also excited about the possibilities that come with having a new person in this position. In this issue of our newsletter, you will find several short articles about many of the outstanding people, programs, and recent activities that make SLCR unique, dynamic, and forward moving.

As I have stated before, SLCR is dedicated to the study of language, literature, society, race, and cultures, both nationally and globally, and our now four-year-old school continues to grow and develop. We currently have four cohorts of PhD students in American Studies, the most senior of whom graduated in May; a lecture series entering its third year; and an art competition aiming to connect art and social justice matters. We also continue to make changes to our curriculum to best serve and meet the needs of our students across our 25 undergraduate major- and minor-degree programs and our PhD program in the following areas (listed alphabetically): American Indian Studies, American Studies and Culture (PhD), Chinese, Comparative Ethnic Studies, Popular Culture, Film Studies, French, German, Hispanic Studies, Humanities, Japanese, Latin American Studies, Social Sciences, and Spanish.

You can learn about the wonderful work that some of our graduates are doing in our Alumni Spotlight section, featuring a graduate from CES, one from Languages (a double major in German), one from our Humanities degree, and one from our American Studies PhD Program.

The School is now home to more than 30 faculty across three campuses of the WSU system, including a new assistant professor starting in fall 2022 and a few emeritus faculty. Among the important and diverse areas of research undertaken by our faculty are health/contagion; linguistics; race, racial identity and racism; cultural productions of 9/11; food sovereignty and justice; language acquisition and language pedagogy; popular culture; literature; translation; cultural politics of sport; gender and sexuality; technologies of time and space; and social justice. As you will see in the Research and Publications section, even during the height of the pandemic, our faculty and graduate students were steadfast in writing, presenting, and publishing their work.

SLCR faculty, along with our staff and advisors, are dedicated to providing highest-quality education and support for every student to succeed in the classroom and beyond. Among outreach and events planned for the school year, we are looking forward to another installment of our Lecture Series in fall 2022 and to the Art for Social Change competition the following spring.

I will like to take a moment here to thank all of you, alumni, donors, students, faculty, and staff for five wonderful years as director of the School. The position came with many challenges, but it also came with wonderful colleagues willing to listen and work together. I will always be grateful for the opportunity to serve as the inaugural director of the School of Languages, Cultures, and Race.

Finally, as we continue to work on new and ongoing projects, please know that your support and encouragement means the world to us.

Thank you for reading our newsletter and enjoy the promise that comes with a new academic year!

Carmen R. Lugo-Lugo
Director of SLCR
Professor of Comparative Ethnic Studies