Youth, Organizing, and Social Justice Pedagogy: Collaborations across Institutions and Sectors
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction, presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis dissertation assesses the role of collaboration in social justice pedagogy. I conducted this study as the founder and director of the Collaborative Research in Action (CRiA) program, which recruited and trained community college and university undergraduate students to facilitate participatory action research (PAR) workshops at partnering middle and high schools. Training included readings and critical dialogue on PAR as well as visits with leading community organization representatives. After a semester of training, community college and university students were paired together, and matched with middle and high school classes and assisted those youth with their PAR projects. Together, the college student interns and I organized annual ethnic studies and social justice youth conferences at the university, where elementary, middle, and high school students throughout the region were invited to present their research on panels moderated by scholars and community leaders. Ecological systems theory (Bronfenbrenner, 1979) serves as a theoretical framework. I utilized testimonio (Beverly, 2005; Perez Huber, 2010; Reyes & Curry Rodríguez, 2012) as a methodological approach to learn from 15 of the college student interns, teachers, and community advocates who participated in the program. Through parts of this dissertation I also share testimonio of my own experience with the CRiA program. Implications of this dissertation highlight how social justice pedagogy must be accompanied by mechanisms that connect students to organizations, collectives, and movements in order for learning to contribute to social transformation. Conversely, social justice pedagogy that is devoid of praxis (Freire, 2000) and engagement beyond the schoolhouse door perpetuates inequity by rendering oppression an academic exercise. Social justice pedagogy should be intergenerational, multi-institutional, and cross-sector while centering youth and student voice.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
Mexican American Studies