The Center for the Humanities’ and the Gittell Urban Studies Collective’ CUNY Adjunct Incubator supports the critical and community-engaged scholarship of adjuncts teaching across CUNY.
In 2020-2021, the CUNY Adjunct Incubator awarded grants to 10 CUNY adjuncts from 8 CUNY colleges to develop a wide range of public and applied projects in the arts, humanities and humanistic social sciences. Read more about their vital work below:
- Alicia Grullon (Art Department, Social Practice Queens, Queens College, CUNY and The School of Visual Arts)
“Seed Books” an interdisciplinary art project focused on creating a community seed bank, based on seeds grown in working class IBPOC communities and what that might look like in non-traditional formats. “Seed Books’ will culminate into an archive based on re-enacted oral-histories from interviews with gardeners, activists, and residents. Programming will support critical work on the connections between the body, land rights, migration, food sovereignty, gentrification and environmental justice. The incubator grant is funding initial research, interviews and filming focused on the response to COVID19 through mutual aid groups and community gardens. Click here for more information about this project.
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- Tania Avilés Vergara (Spanish for Heritage Students and Hispanic Linguistics, Lehman College, CUNY)
Teaching and Learning Spanish at CUNY: Public Language Education Through Archival Resources
The “Teaching and Learning Spanish at CUNY: Public Language Education Through Archival Resources” project promotes the use of archives as open educational resources (OER) in the Spanish language class.
The project seeks to center the histories, experiences and voices of Latinx communities in the Spanish class through the use of archives.
The project partners with the Center for Puerto Rican Studies, the Dominican Studies Institute and the Mexican Studies Institute, and supports these institutions by making their research and collections accessible in the classroom. Click here for more information about this project.
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- Chloe Smolarski (American Social History Project/New Media Lab, CUNY Digital History Archive, and The Center for Teaching and Learning at The Graduate Center, CUNY, and Adjunct Instructor, Entertainment Technology/Emerging Media, New York City College of Technology, CUNY)
CUNY Adjunct Oral History Project
As NYC continues to battle the COVID-19 pandemic, the CUNY community has pivoted to on-line teaching while experiencing massive budget cuts and adjunct layoffs, The CUNY Digital History Archive (cdha.cuny.edu) hosted a one-day oral history workshop Inviting Authorship: Oral History as Spontaneous Literature on April 16th, 2021 with oral historian, writer, and interdisciplinary artist Nyssa Chow and is continuing to offer free training, guidance, and a platform to those who wish to conduct and archive oral histories that address the experiences of adjuncts at CUNY during the COVID-19 pandemic with an emphasis on labor and education. Click here for more information about this project.
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- Kendra Krueger (Advanced Science Research Center, The Graduate Center, CUNY)
The Community Sensor Lab
The Community Sensor Lab seeks to equip youth and community members with research tools and STEAM skills to better advocate for local policy change on public health and environmental justice. The project mobilizes CUNY undergraduate and NYC high school students as public educators on the versatility of D-I-Y (Do-It-Yourself) electronics and sensors. The lab also consists of a transdisciplinary working group, led by CUNY adjuncts across disciplines of art, science and the humanities, tasked with developing best practices for participatory, intersectional and decolonial research. As part of the Community Sensor Lab, Krueger made this short video explaining how to build a D.I.Y. carbon dioxide sensor.
Click here for more information about this project.
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- Mariposa Fernandez (Faculty member in the Women and Gender Studies Program and Africana Studies Department at Lehman College and the Black Studies Program at City College of New York. )
Be A Buddy Multimedia Project: Stories of Strength from the South Bronx
The “Be a Buddy (BaB) Multimedia Project: Stories of Strength from the South Bronx” will gather stories of strength in the South Bronx to document community and neighborhood resilience, sustainability work, mutual aid projects and the community building efforts of neighbors taking care of each other in the Hunts Point/Longwood community in the South Bronx. An additional aim of the BaB Multimedia Project is to engage CUNY students and recent CUNY graduates who are involved in community work in Hunts Point and Longwood, in order to find the CUNY stories inside of the larger story of community work and members who are fighting back and fighting forward! Click here for more information about this project.
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- Jasmina Sinanović (Anthropology, Gender Studies and International Studies Department, The City College of New York, CUNY; Director of Development and Finance at the Center for LGBTQ Studies, CLAGS, The Graduate Center, CUNY)
Transgender and Non Binary Contingent Faculty Experience at CUNY
The “Transgender and Non Binary Contingent Faculty Experience at CUNY” project will focus on the experience of Transgender and Non Binary contingent faculty at CUNY. The project consists of three elements:
- a survey of CUNY adjuncts that identify as transgender and/or non binary
- open forum discussions about experiences and needs of transgender and/or non binary adjunct faculty
- small group art exploration of CUNY adjunct experiences
Click here for more information about this project.
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Van Anh Tran (Department of Curriculum & Teaching, the Hunter School of Education, CUNY; and a PhD Candidate in Social Studies Education at Teachers College, Columbia)
Im/migration, Belonging, and Disrupting Cycles of State Violence: A Southeast Asian DeportaTion Defense Case Study Curricular Toolkit
This project seeks to create a curricular toolkit for individuals, families, advocates, community organizers, educators, and more within and beyond the Southeast Asian (SEA) community who want to serve, educate, advocate, and organize against detentions and deportations. Over the past two decades, SEA community groups and networks have been mobilizing to defend communities from mass deportations. This project aims to create a living record and resource to pool this collective knowledge and learning to share what SEA community organizations have learned with those who are engaging and/or wanting to engage in anti-deportation work.
In seeing the ways our government has and continues to dehumanize the lives of Black and Brown people, and immigrants and refugees, we call for the abolition of carceral systems that have enacted violence against our communities and present this project and toolkit as a resource to build the capacity of our communities as we continue to fight for justice. Click here for more information about this project.
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- Michelle Gaspari (Sociology, Anthropology, and Women and Gender Studies, Baruch College, CUNY, and a Co-Organizer at The CUNY Adjunct Project)
The Adjunctification of Higher Education: A Guided Syllabus
“The Adjunctification of Higher Education: A Guided Syllabus” is a multimedia digital pedagogical toolkit for faculty to teach about adjunct welfare and precarity at CUNY. The guided syllabus will consist of content and lessons to teach students about the undervalued adjunct labor that keeps New York City’s public higher education afloat, the broader sociological backdrop of higher education’s “adjunctification” in this country, and the ways that students and educators can pressure CUNY and the state to intervene and advocate for their right to fairly compensated professors. Part of the toolkit is an original short documentary on CUNY’s relationship with its adjunct workers. It features several adjuncts presenting their experiences. This can be streamed in the classroom and mobilized in adjunct activism at CUNY. There will be a panel discussion featuring the documentary and the broader syllabus project hosted by The CUNY Adjunct Project in Fall 2021. Click here for more information about this project.
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- Dominika Ksel (New Media Arts, New York City College of Technology, CUNY, and Baruch College, CUNY)
Virtual Reality and Environmental Social Justice presents “TrashTalk: A VR Exploratorium”
The “Virtual Reality and Environmental Social Justice” class at New York City College of Technology, CUNY, looks at the intersections of social justice, gameplay, immersive storytelling and world-building through VR video and gaming to highlight the interdependent nature, necessity and future of Jamaica Bay Wildlife Preserve, the Rockaways and NYC at large. Led by Dominika Ksel, the students in the class created a multi-media project that centers on Environmental Social Justice (Urban Climate Justice and Intersectionality) in NYC (with a particular focus on the Rockaways and Jamaica Bay), including an interactive website with a 360 VR Video and Urban Climate Justice VR game TrashTalk. Click here or below to see how the 360 video works:
Click here for more information about this class and project.
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- Apeksha Mewani (Health and Human Performance at York College, CUNY)
Public Health Informatics Careers Dashboard
“The Public Health Informatics Careers Dashboard” project aims to support the creation of an innovative dashboard that offers career services and support for CUNY undergraduate and graduate students of public health disciplines. The pandemic has caused a major global recession as millions are being displaced and rendered unemployed. Amid all of this, the health education economy can be strengthened through a virtual platform for public health professionals to engage and have their urgent demands carefully assessed, voiced, conveyed, and eventually met. Click here for more information about this project.
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The CUNY Adjunct Incubator is co-sponsored by the Center for the Humanities and the Gittell Urban Studies Collective at The Graduate Center, CUNY.