USD Connections: Expanding Beyond the Classroom

USD Connections: Expanding Beyond the Classroom

There’s a silver lining in every challenging situation, even in the midst of a crisis. For Ethnic Studies Professor Alberto Pulido, PhD, and first-year student Ashley Gonzalez '23, that silver lining was forming an unexpected connection after the COVID-19 pandemic struck.

Professor Pulido and Gonzalez first met before the 2019-2020 academic year even began. During Olé Weekend last fall, Gonzalez stopped by a big bus parked on the USD campus because she was attracted to its colorful murals. This was not your typical bus, but in fact a mobile classroom and a part of Professor Pulido’s Turning Wheel project located in Logan Heights. Gonzalez and Professor Pulido discussed the Turning Wheel project and discovered that they had a Logan Heights connection – Gonzalez lived just a few miles from where the Turning Wheel bus was usually parked. And there was another coincidence – Gonzalez was going to be in Professor Pulido's class.  

When USD transitioned to remote instruction in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Professor Pulido had to rely on virtual technology to teach his students including Gonzalez. During virtual office hours, Professor Pulido was able to meet Gonzalez’s parents and form a new connection that may have not been possible without remote teaching. Professor Pulido commented, "Interestingly enough, with this virtual connection, we were able to meet and was so wonderful to meet them."


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