K-A-L-A-M-A-Z-O-Oh

, Malcolm A. Kline, Leave a comment

Well, somebody got a job with a women’s studies degree. “When Jaime Grant got a phone call suggesting that she leave behind two decades’ worth of social-justice work in Washington and move to Kalamazoo College, in Michigan, which enrolls about 1,400 students, she said the caller must have the wrong person,” Michael Sewall writes in the September 10, 2010 issue of the Chronicle of Higher Education. “But after hearing more about the job offer—to lead Kalamazoo’s new Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership—and visiting the campus, she decided on a big change of scenery.”

“When she talked with Kalamazoo students during her visit, she said, ‘there wasn’t a student who was there who wasn’t really thinking about service work.’ The creative possibilities and potential to have an impact won her over.”

“Ms. Grant, 49, has long focused on the goals promoted by the Arcus center: leadership development and social justice. Most recently, she was the Policy Institute director at the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, and she has spent more than 20 years working on women’s rights and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender issues. After she starts at Kalamazoo this month, she says, she’ll be able to dig deeper into social-justice issues and help train people interested in those causes to become leaders.”

“Any time somebody is in a job they love, it’s hard to pull them away,” Michael A. McDonald, Kalamazoo’s provost, who was part of the search committee, told Sewall. “People seemed to have preconceived notions of what a city like Kalamazoo could do on the social-justice front.”

“From 1993 to 2000, she was director of the Union Institute Center for Women, in Washington, from which she earned her Ph.D. in women’s studies in 1999,” Sewall writes. She also served from 2004 to 2007 as the director of the Ford Foundation’s Leadership for a Changing World program.

As well, she taught women’s studies at Georgetown. “Ms. Grant is preparing for her major transition, moving with her partner, M’Bwende Anderson, and their two children from the national hub of politics and policy to Kalamazoo, which she anticipates will become a place that drives social change globally,” Sewall writes.

Malcolm A. Kline is the Executive Director of Accuracy in Academia.

If you would like to comment on this article, e-mail mal.kline@academia.org

 

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