The Center for Regional Studies (CRS) has announced the Tribal/Community College Research Scholar appointment of Steven A. Romero for a summer 2023 residency. Romero is an adjunct English instructor at Central New Mexico Community College and will begin an assistant professor of English position at The University of New Mexico-Valencia campus beginning Fall 2023.

Steven Romero, Tribal/Community Research Scholar

Having earned his master’s degree in English, Romero is now pursuing his Ph.D. in Chicana and Chicano Studies with a concentration in Community-Engaged Learning and Curriculum Development. CRS will financially support Romero as he reports on the implementation of his curriculum projects, the Salt of the Earth Recovery Project Digital Archive and the Salt of the Earth: A Teaching and Learning Resource website, in his English Composition and Introduction to Global and Ethnic Studies courses. Each will serve as the foundation for his students’ capstone projects, which will be to create their own digital archive on a topic exploring their lived experiences informed by historical and/or cultural complexities.

Romero believes that in rhetorically analyzing digital archives and creating their own digital archive projects, students learn the significance of field rhetoric, counter-story, and intersectionality as a foundation for self-reflection, collaborative learning, and civic engagement. He will work on drafting a report that addresses how integrating digital archives into general education courses presents an opportunity to shift students’ introduction to research from a static, isolated endeavor towards a more dynamic, community-engaged one in which students can develop critical analysis and multimodal practices that necessarily disrupt traditional curriculum paradigms.

As part of his Ph.D. journey, and with the support of the Chicana/o Studies (CCS) department and CCS Graduate Director Michelle Hall Kells, Romero will develop best practices to strengthen a general education curriculum that integrates digital archives as a foundation for student learning.

“I've had the joy and honor of working with Steven as his advisor since 2017. He worked with us on the CRS-sponsored project the Salt of the Earth Recovery Project in 2018. Steven's work aligns the rich theoretical and rhetorical resources of Chicana and Chicano Studies with his own story in powerful and insightful ways with implications for scholars, teachers, and educational activists across fields toward promoting equity, access, and social justice in higher education,” Kells said.

Romero will share his research with UNM students and faculty, as well as the community, by giving a public lecture towards the end of July or early August on UNM’s campus.