After being accepted into the American Studies Graduate Program, James Ponzo was selected as a Schomburg Fellow, completed his MA, and then was accepted into the PhD program, and awarded a teaching assistantship. His research engages the rich cultural tradition and literary accomplishments of African-American Culture and Literature in the United States. James MA thesis centered on major themes from Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison and how he skillfully articulated issues of his personal life, his generation, and the totality of the lived experience of African Americans within its pages.
As a doctoral candidate, I am currently teaching my fourth different class, Black Gender Studies. My other courses have been Black Social & Political Thought and African American History-which I teach online during the Winter and Summer semesters. I am very thankful for all of the assistance and support I have received as a student in this department. I have the added benefit of having relationships with professors and faculty that stem from my years as an undergraduate in the African American Studies program. I am very excited as I work toward finishing my final year in the program, and ultimately securing a teaching position at the post-secondary level, which will afford me the opportunity to instruct students and become a positive force in their lives and within the community. The Transnational Studies Program has played a significant role in preparation for my future endeavors. - James Ponzo