Bard College at Simon's Rock: the Early College

Seeing Students as “Kindred Spirits”

francisca Oyogoa

Professor of Sociology and African American Studies

A John Hope Franklin Fellow

Francisca won a John Hope Franklin Fellowship from the American Philosophical Society for her doctoral dissertation, Economics or Racism: Untold Story of Pullman Porters.

Many people have heard of the Pullman porter, but the story has never been told from the lens of the people who were employing these legions of black workers. So I developed a theoretical framework for looking at how employers served as racial agents, acting as people who are motivated by the same sorts of racial prejudices as everyone else. —An excerpt from Francisca's dissertation

I’m kindred spirits with all the students in a certain way—I had that desire to get out of high school and start college early and start learning, too.

Francisca is that college mentor that you dream about having, but never actually know if you'll be lucky enough to get.

-Sierra '09

Francisca in class

Every student takes their own individual journey while they're here. Some will come to Simon's Rock with a very clear idea of what they're going to do with their life. Other students come in and they don't know what they want to do so they just take a bunch of classes for two or three years, and then they figure it out. Seeing students take their own journey is exciting.

Why be a 15-year-old or a 16-year-old who's sitting in a classroom in high school where somebody is just talking to you? Why not come to a place where you're engaging with ideas and you're learning from your peers, you're learning from your professors, and you're also teaching other people?


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 Francisca Oyogoa

Francisca Oyogoa

Professor of Sociology and African American Studies