2024 Holmes Summer Learning Series: Calling all Motherscholars!: Theory, Practice, and Life

When:  Aug 27, 2024 from 01:00 PM to 02:00 PM (ET)

At a highly attended panel for AERA’s Division G, Cheryl Matias, Ph.D., introduced the concept of a "motherscholar," combining the roles of both scholar and mother. Drawing inspiration from Zeus Leonardo's idea of "raceclass," where race and class are inseparable in analysis, Matias argues that being a mother and a scholar are similarly intertwined, each informing the other for a richer praxis. Since 2011, there has been a growing movement of motherscholarship. Despite various forms of the term (mother-scholar, MotherScholar, etc.), Matias adheres to the original idea: the intersections of race, class, gender, and other social factors must always be considered in the work of a Motherscholar. 


This webinar will explore the theoretical foundations, provide essential literature, and discuss the experience of raising children as a motherscholar. Matias will share her personal journey of becoming pregnant with twins while at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), navigating hiring and tenure processes, and my life now as a full professor with her twins heading to college.  This session is open to all Holmes scholars interested in this topic, regardless of race, gender, or parental status. The goal is for attendees to feel supported and recognize the potential for building strong networks and communities (kumare/comadre-ship) among motherscholars.   




Cheryl Matias, Ph.D. 

Professor, Holmes Program Coordinator 

University of San Diego 


Matias was recently awarded the 2020 Mid-Career Award for her work on racial justice in teacher education at the premier organization, the American Educational Research Association (AERA). She is a full professor in the School of Leadership and Education Sciences at the University of San Diego. 


Her research focuses on race and ethnic studies in education with a theoretical focus on critical race theory, critical whiteness studies, critical pedagogy, and feminism of color. Specifically, she uses a feminist of color approach to deconstruct the emotionality of whiteness in urban teacher education and how it impacts urban education. Her other research interest is on motherscholarship and supporting women of color and motherscholars in the academy. A former K-12 teacher in both South Central, Los Angeles Unified School District, and Bed-Stuyvesant, New York City Department of Education, she earned her bachelor's in cultural communication from the University of California San Diego, teaching credential at San Diego State University, and her master’s in social and multicultural foundations at California State University, Long Beach. She earned her doctorate at UCLA with an emphasis on race and ethnic studies in education.