The CSU System Eliminates Comparative Cultural Studies Requirement

by Carlos R. Guerrero

In an attempt to streamline required general education courses and improve graduation rates at the California State University System, the CSU Chancellor issued Executive Order 1100 at the end of August 2017 that eliminated a key GE Section F, the Comparative Cultural Studies/Gender, Race, Class, and Ethnicity Studies, and Foreign Languages.

Cultural Studies, Gender, and Ethnicity Studies departments were taken by surprise by the Executive Order. The elimination of the Section F of the GE Package will not only reduce Ethnic Studies, Gender and Women’s Studies, and Queer Studies programs but can also lead to their demise.

Throughout the system, departments have pushed back to the Executive Order. Sonoma State University, CSU, Monterey Bay, CSU, Northridge, CSU, Long Beach, and others have issued statements of concern over the executive order.

In a recent letter to the Chancellor’s office, the Chicana and Chicano Studies faculty at CSU, Northridge outlined their opposition to the Executive Order. The Deparment raised issues of faculty governance where the CSU system failed to consult affected programs, addressed that CSU failed to take into account retention rates which have risen as a result of courses in Section F, and viewed the executive order as a reflection of Western dominant culture that “erases and silences disciplines that arose out of anti-racists, anti-colonial and feminist social struggles.”

In an effort to diffuse concerns, university administrators have suggested that the courses be placed into the remaining GE sections. However, in creating such an overlay, departments feel that the courses would not only be completely diluted but also lose their value.

By eviscerating the Comparative Cultural Studies/Gender, Race, Class, and Ethnicity Studies, and Foreign Languages general education requirement, the California State University demonstrates their disregard to the importance of inclusivity and the mission of a University education.

Link to CSU, Northridge Chicana and Chicano Studies Statement

Link to Petition Against CSU EO 1100

Fall 2017, Volume 42 No. 1

Comments are closed.

Post Navigation