Ep. 39: Campaigning for Transformation and Grace in Academia with Dr. Ana Linda Arellano Nez

Season #4 Episode #39

Dr. Renee and Dr. Cristina continue their discussion on the state of academia and attempt to pull back the curtain behind its hierarchical structure, based on their personal experiences in this world.

Today’s guest, Dr. Ana Linda Arellano Nez, first met our hosts through their writing course and today works as the copy editor for Saint Lunita magazine alongside being an ethnic studies professor at California State University, Fullerton.

  • Our hosts and Dr. Ana Linda reflect on their search for home in academia, being the first in their respective families to go through higher education, not to mention the mental exhaustion and lack of recognition that being an adjunct university professor comes with, particularly in California.

  • Dr. Ana Linda shares her experience as an adjunct professor and her search for tenured positions. She chats about her love for teaching and why she had always been completely at home in classrooms and libraries. She also discusses the reality that expectant mothers experience in academia.

  • Dr. Renee explains that “capitalism is exploitation. Academia is capitalism. Therefore, academia is going to be exploitative at all levels, particularly for adjuncts with no stability.”

  • Finally, it’s always important to remember that life is worth more than our career. We shouldn’t be forced to burnout or settle for a lower salary than we deserve. It’s important to call out the exploitation present in academia in order for adjunct professors to start seeing real change and thrive while doing the work they’re so passionate about.

Dr. Renee, Dr. Cristina, and Dr. Ana Linda break down the many issues with the university system in California, particularly as it pertains to adjunct professors like themselves.

While they absolutely love their work as teachers, the rampant exploitation and underappreciaton of adjuncts is a huge systemic problem. For instance, being a mom shouldn’t be something that you have to hide just because it doesn’t make you as “desirable” a candidate.

Las Doctoras hopes that their conversations become catalysts for transformation and grace in the world of academia for the sake of all future Women of Color looking for careers in the university system.

Connect with Las Doctoras:

Visit their website: www.lasdoctoras.net 

Follow them on Instagram: www.instagram.com/las.doctoras