I am an instructor in the Political Science Department at De Anza College. On the menus above you have access to the course syllabi for all of the classes I teach at De Anza College. I love teaching and am dedicated to student learning and student success. Please feel free to write or call with questions.
I hope to see you soon in one of my classes.
Nicky González Yuen, Ph.D, JD
Chair, De Anza College Political Science Department
I have taught contemporary social justice politics and political theory in the Political Science Department at De Anza College in Cupertino, California since 1989.
I graduated summa cum laude in political science from Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota, completed a J.D. at Berkeley Law, University of California Berkeley, and a Ph.D. at the Jurisprudence and Social Policy Program, Berkeley Law, University of California, Berkeley.
My approach to the study of politics, combines both scholarship and a practical understanding of political life gained from years of organizing and being active in environmental and social justice movements.
I'm a real believer in not separating the words we speak from the lives we live. So, in addition to being a full-time community college instructor, I coordinate De Anza's Campus Camp Wellstone student activist training program, serve on the Executive Committee of the labor union representing faculty members at Foothill-De Anza (the FHDA Faculty Association), direct two separate student internship programs for Foothill and DeAnza College students and am active in the Political Action Committee for our labor union.
Outside of De Anza, I am a consultant and trainer, carrying out workshops and seminars on leadership development, political organizing, educational reform and cultural diversity. I serve on the State Central Committee of the California State Democratic Party, am active in local politics in the East Bay and in South Bay with a special focus on organizing to raise the minimum wage, am on the statewide membership committee of the Faculty Association of the California Community Colleges, and am also a local elected official in my third 4 year term on the Peralta Community College Board of Trustees in the East Bay. For more information, go to www.NickyGY.org.
All of this work informs who I am as a classroom instructor and helps provide many opportunities for engaged teaching.
Words to think on:
If a teacher does not involve himself, his values, his commitments, in the course of discussion, why should the students?"-- Sen. Paul D. Wellstone (1944-2002)
It is the people of our country who make it great, and unless we take care of the people first, we'll never be successful in maintaining our greatness. Taking care of the people means providing healthcare for everyone. It means keeping the environment clean, safe and preserved. It means great schools and great jobs. It means improving the lives of families, rather than lining the pockets of big business, or big politicians. It means taking care of each other here, and around the world. We're all in this together.-- Carol S., Amherst, MA
To be hopeful in bad times is not just foolishly romantic. It is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of cruelty, but also of compassion, sacrifice, courage, and kindness. What we choose to emphasize in this complex history will determine our lives. If we see only the worst, it destroys our capacity to do something. If we remember those times and places- and there are so many- where people have behaved magnificently, this gives us the energy to act, and at least the possibility of sending this spinning top of a world in a different direction. And if we do act, in however small way, we don’t have to wait for some grand utopian future. The future is an infinite succession of presents, and to live now as we think human beings should live, in defiance of all that is bad around us, is itself a marvelous victory. --Howard Zinn