Crystal Anderson, PhD, has been a full-time faculty member at Cabrini for five years now. She teaches at both the undergraduate and graduate level within the department of Educational Policy and Leadership. Currently, Anderson is working on developing an ECG course based on the educational experiences of Latinos and working on a grant proposal to bring the Every Campus a Refuge (ECAR) program to Cabrini. In the coming months, Anderson will also work on research centered around social studies teacher content knowledge and will lead a professional development day based on the Brown University CHOICES program.
Do you have a favorite subject matter—or lesson—that you teach?
My favorite subject matter to teach, without a doubt, is citizenship and human rights. I’m particularly interested in conceptions of rights and how individuals define, understand, and enact their citizenship. I vehemently believe that no human is, or ever can be, illegal. The overarching goal in all of my courses is to help students realize their own citizenship identity and then to understand the responsibilities and commitment required of them to fight for both civil and human rights. In this pivotal socio-political moment in history and as a survivor of domestic violence and assault, I’m also deeply inspired by the current “Me Too” movement that is helping to encourage all females to speak up, to cross-examine gender inequalities, and to exercise courage in their word and action. I’m currently supporting this dialogue in my courses as it relates to civil and human rights and I hope that it will yield permanent empowerment.
What is your go-to advice for Cabrini students?
Become and stay educated (it’s forever and one of the few things in life that can’t ever be taken away from you), be unique, and always show enthusiasm. These qualities will likely land you a job, but better yet, they’ll help you contribute to a more constructive world.
What are the top three songs on your current playlist?
Music is how I relate to the world so this is a very serious question for me! There are so many possibilities! I can’t commit to a particular song so I’m going with albums and artists. First, it’s cliché, but true that as a professor I love classical music. It never fails to comfort me. My favorite composer and pianist is Erik Satie, so “Gymnopediés” is on my daily playlist. My favorite contemporary musician is Ray LaMontagne and “Trouble” is one of my top albums of all time. The Beatles and the Rolling Stones - everything is epic. Lastly, when I need inspiration, I’ll throw on Lila Downs or Ani DiFranco, both feminist musicians.
Where is your favorite place in the world?
Pretty much anywhere in the mountains of Wyoming. Paris is a close second.
What are two things still left on your bucket list?
To drink beers with Barack Obama and…to drink beers with Barack Obama.