Sel J. Hwahng teaches the power of an open mind.
Sel J. Hwahng, assistant professor in the Department of Women’s & Gender Studies, focuses on important issues — issues that get to the essence of our humanity. Hwahng teaches the undergraduate courses, “Introduction to LGBT Studies” and “International Perspectives of Women,” and leads challenging discussions on equality, gender-based exploitation, sexuality and bias. Hwahng provides supportive guidance as students are exposed to these difficult topics.
“Awareness of these issues is important for self-knowledge and can offer individuals ways to optimize potential and fulfillment,” Hwahng says. Students who are interested in enlarging their world are encouraged to think deeply about the treatment of others on humanitarian, economic, social and political levels. The experience can be transformational.
Not one to shy away from personal life transformations, Hwahng is studying for an additional master’s (Sc.M.) degree in cardiovascular epidemiology at Johns Hopkins University. After a Ph.D. and post-doctoral public health fellowship, Hwahng worked with the transgender community, with whom they identify, and now wants to study cardiovascular health among transgender and LBGTQ communities. This underserved research population is at higher risk for cardiovascular illness as well as other health issues. The JHU master’s degree will add another layer to Hwahng’s already extensive understanding of gender and health issues. No doubt this new knowledge will find its way into classroom discussions.
Hwahng appreciates TU’s emphasis on teaching as both an art and a science. In addition, TU’s status as a University System of Maryland school offers Hwahng the opportunity to connect with others who are studying, researching and teaching gender studies. These connections broaden and strengthen the conversation about equality and the uniqueness of every individual.