Another World is Possible: Envisioning an Intersectional Social Justice Student Affairs Praxis

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2015-02-15
Authors
Pitcher, Erich
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Developing an intersectional social justice praxis in student affairs is important given the wide sweeping economic and political shifts are occurring in society and are creating shifts within higher education environments. These shifts, referred to here as neoliberalism, adversely affect already minoritized populations (e.g., trans* students). Simultaneously, higher education professionals, particularly those in identity-based centers, seek solutions to common student problems (e.g., campus climate) through policies and practices, which may inadvertently advance a neo-liberal agenda. I propose a framework that seeks to develop policies, programs, and practices that work to subvert neoliberalism, or at the very least stop the advancement of neoliberal ideology within student affairs. In this article, I argue adoption of this framework in student affairs using findings from an exploratory study about the experiences of transgender college students. The framework calls for social justice approach grounded in Critical Trans Politics and draws on notions of intersectionality to understand the effects of larger social forces on individual students’ experiences.

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