New fall course on citizenship


Next semester a new course teaching citizenship and diversity will be required for all incoming freshmen in the College of Arts & Sciences. The course is called A&S111.

By SARAH KIM Reporter

The College of Arts and Sciences will implement a new course next fall focused on citizenship, diversity, inclusion and equity.

Introduction to Global Citizenship and Diversity will be added to the college’s graduation requirement for the incoming class, as well as students who switch to a major within the College of Arts and Sciences beginning 2017.

A&S 111 will involve active discussion and intergroup dialogue pertaining to issues concerning citizenship.

“It’s not just about being aware of diversity. The real focus is on ‘how can I be a good citizen?’” said Dean of Arts and Sciences Dennis Papini.

Papini hopes the course will provide students with the critical thinking tools they need to make sense of complicated issues.

“We’re not trying to tell them what to think, we’re trying to show them how to think,” Papini said. “This is a class that is going to provide students with the opportunity to think about issues from perspectives that they may not be familiar with.”

Graduate student Kaitlyn Abrahamson said that the course would have helped her academic career while she was a freshman majoring in global studies.

“I would have been able to research with a more open mind and see things I wouldn’t have seen otherwise. It [the course] would have broadened my abilities as a student,” Abrahamson said.

According to Associate Dean of College of Arts and Sciences Jason Zimmerman, the topics covered in the course are “woven throughout” a student’s experiences.

“We want this to be something they are thinking about and working with all four years so they’re well-positioned to be able to tackle these issues in the context of their majors,” Zimmerman said.

Mary Machado, a junior from Venezuela majoring in electrical engineering, thinks A&S 111 can be beneficial to international students as well.

“It’s the same type of culture shock for both Americans and international students,” said Machado. “They [international students] don’t know the culture here, and there are many different countries represented at SDSU, so it’s good that the goal is to grow respect on campus.”

Ultimately, Papini said, the purpose of A&S 111 is to impart foundational skills students can apply long after their time at SDSU.

“We’re hoping it’s the beginning of an important reflection,” Papini said. “We want them to apply this to their life.”