Marisela Martinez-Cola joined the faculty at USU in the Fall of 2018 after receiving her Ph.D. from Emory University. She is also an alumna of the University of Michigan where she majored in African American Studies and earned her law degree at Loyola University Chicago School of Law. She credits her varied educational experiences for contributing to her interdisciplinary approach to research and teaching. Her research largely focuses on the critical comparative study of race, class, and gender as it relates to culture, social movements, and comparative/historical sociology. Her current book project is entitled, The Bricks Before Brown, and is a comparative historical case study of the construction of race, class, and gender in Mexican American, Chinese American, and Native American school desegregation cases that came before Brown v. Board of Education. Her next project, Otherwise We'd Cry, will involve interviewing comedians from varied racial backgrounds and asking them how they joke about race. She teaches the Sociology of Race & Ethnicity, Advanced Qualitative Methodology, Political Sociology and a course on social movements called Civil Rights of a Different Color. Before coming to USU, she has had the honor of teaching amazing students at Emory University, Oglethorpe University, and serving as a Mellon Fellow at Morehouse College.
She has published in the Journal of Law & Society, The Sociology of Race and Ethnicity, Teaching Sociology, Understanding and Dismantling Privilege, and Humanity and Society.