Meet the Professor: Cindy Huyhn, PhD

Meet San Jose City College Professor Cindy Huyhn, PhD. She teaches courses at both the Main Campus and The Extension.

How long have you been a professor at the college?

This is my third year with the district and second at San Jose City College.

What do you teach?

I teach Ethnic Studies 27: Introduction to Race and Ethnicity in American History; Ethnic Studies 42: Asian Pacific American Culture; and Ethnic Studies 41: Vietnamese American Culture. The Ethnic Studies Department has numerous forthcoming courses including one on race and social justice, women of color, and film. This academic year at the extension campus, I have taught dual-enrollment courses of ETH 27 and ETH 42. Dual-enrollment is my favorite.

What makes San Jose City College a unique educational community?

The students. Our College population reflects the city’s population and it is our responsibility to meet the needs of those we serve, without exception.

What has it been like for you, coming in to also teach at the Milpitas campus?

I really enjoy teaching at the extension campus. It has its own intimate campus climate that has afforded me the opportunity to really get to know the faculty, staff, students, and surrounding community. The space and abundance of resources has provided me with different pedagogical tools to create a more engaged, hands on learning environment. Being at the extension campus has also taught me not to conflate Milpitas with San Jose. While they are neighboring cities, Milpitas has its own needs, successes, and stories to tell.

What was it that inspired you to be a professor?

Service and reciprocity. I was mentored by dynamic, caring professors of color and always understood that it was my responsibility to reciprocate that type of mentorship and critical education in order to destabilize systems of oppression that directly harm BIPOC communities.

What do you love doing in your spare time?

I love spending time with my 5-week old niece, watching Stephen Curry play basketball, coaching women’s kickboxing, and perfecting recipes with and for my family.

Is there something memorable you can share from your time teaching at the college?

Last semester I went to a MUSD board meeting and watched one of my high schoolers speak out against an incident that happened at their school. The courage, wisdom, and grace the student displayed was a beautiful reminder of why we should invest in and trust our youth.

Favorite quote?

"It’s frustrating when healing doesn’t happen immediately. Some of us choose to slow down the healing work or choose not to heal because we’ve become familiar and comfortable with our wounds. We may be afraid that our entire life will change if we heal. And it will... plunge your hands into the mess, plunge your hands en la masa, into embodied practical material spiritual political acts.” -Gloria Anzaldùa

Any plans for the future?

Get tenure; meet Stephen Curry.