We Are English Majors: Kristin Hogue

In addition to being a re-entry student (she came to UC Davis to get her BA after thirteen years away from school) Kristin Hogue is a Carbon Neutrality Initiative Fellow through the UC Office of the President, and will be directing a student-led course this Spring. We asked her about the development of this course and her plans for the future.

 

Could you describe what the course you will be teaching is about, and how you got interested in doing a student-led course?

 

The course I’ll be teaching is called “Discourses of Climate Change and Sustainability in the Humanities” and it will be about how the humanities contribute to public opinions of climate change and sustainability. My inspiration for this course has been my fellowship this year with the UC Office of the President. For this fellowship, I’m responsible for representing the UC Carbon Neutrality Initiative, which is the commitment the University of California has made to emit zero greenhouse gases from its buildings and vehicle fleet by 2025, something no other major university system has done. My fellowship also includes outreach and student engagement responsibilities, of which this new course is my primary project!

My interest in doing a student-led course also comes out of my love for teaching. My favorite part of my previous career were the corporate trainings I developed and taught. Considering how many years I spent weaving in and out of school to get where I am today, the classroom seems to be my natural habitat!

 

What has been the most influential English course in the making of your course?

 

There have been several influential courses—and Professors!—in the making of my course. I’m a re-entry student, and the first course I took upon returning to UC Davis was called “Natural Disasters” taught by Professor Glazner. I’d been away from school for thirteen years and was surprised by this content and more specifically, the climatic origin of the disasters we read about. I’ve always been very active in environmental issues, and this initial course allowed me to see an academic side to my interests. Subsequently, I then took Professor Menely’s “Anthropocene Fiction” course and was exposed to the Cli-Fi or Climate Fiction genre of literature. For me, there’s nothing more enjoyable than a chillingly dystopian, apocalyptic novel to feed my dark sense of humor, and to encounter an entire genre was liberating! Finally, I’m fortunate to have Professor Margaret Ronda as my advisor for this course. I’m so excited and honored to be teaching some of her ecopoetry! I’ve been humbled by the amount of support I have in the English Department.

 

What's next, after graduation?

 

I am so thrilled about the next stage of my life! I’ve been applying to graduate schools, and I recently found out I’ve been accepted into the UC Davis Cultural Studies Ph.D. program. My primary intention is to research the impact of climate change on culture. More precisely, the research project I’ve proposed is to study climate change migration and climate refugees. I’m interested in our planet’s disappearing geographies and how that will impact not only the people inhabiting those disappearing geographies, but all of humanity. My classes, my professors, my fellowship and the class I’m teaching have all prepared me well for this course of study! I hope my journey from college drop-out, to re-entry student and finally to Ph.D. student will inspire others to never give up on their own education.

 

How do we register for your course?

 

My course is ENL 198F. Upper division students register using CRN 82629 and lower division students register using CRN 82780. When registering, make sure to specify “2 units” and contact the English Department, or me, if you have any questions!