WGS Testimonial: Christopher Galarza

Christopher Galarza, Class of 2016

Majors in Latin American Studies and Women's and Gender Studies

Minor in Music


What inspired you to take a Women’s and Gender Studies class?

I was admitted into the Music School when I first came to UM and I needed People and Society electives. I was looking at the course offerings and I came across WGS and I thought why not, seemed interesting enough, and the rest was history.


What has been one of the most significant take-aways you've gained from your experience with Women’s and Gender Studies?

The biggest gain that I have experienced has definitely been my epistemological shift. I would not say that I was a critical thinker or researcher before I engaged with the coursework of WGS.


What particular course or professor, if any, has particularly inspired or positively impacted you?

The two professors and courses that have inspired me, and both courses are ones that I’m currently taking as a senior. Dr. Geller’s Interpreting Bodies class is a really great class that has challenged a lot of the things that I have taken for granted especially when it comes to my body and its place within society. I also have to thank Dr. Geller for being my thesis advisor and helping me along the way and also being excited for the research that I am doing with my thesis. And the other course and professor is Gender and Sexuality in the MENA with Dr. Oueslati-Porter, this class has showed me so much about ethnographic research and has really inspired me to want to go into this type of research when I go on to get my graduate degrees.


How has Women’s and Gender Studies fit with any other courses of study you may be pursuing?

I am also studying Latin American Studies and believe it or not, many of the courses actually are cross-listed, which really helped me get both of my majors completed on time even though I switched into Latin American Studies my sophomore year and Women’s and Gender Studies my senior year.


How do you see Women’s and Gender Studies fitting into your post-college experiences?

I will be going to the Peace Corps this coming August and will be working at the Let Girls Learn post, which is a post to help promote women’s empowerment and education so there is a direct correlation with my future volunteer position for the next 2 or 3 years. After that, I am looking to get my master’s in WGS and Anthropology from a higher education institution.