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Center on Race, Immigration & Social Justice California State University, Sacramento

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Academic Year Programming

Please find below a list of current or upcoming CRISJ-related or -sponsored events on or for the Sacramento State community.

Interested in a previous event? Please see our comprehensive Past Events Archive.

CRISJ Empowerment Scholarship

Application Deadline:

March 2, 2024

Award Disbursement: Fall 2024

CRISJ’s Mission: Work collaboratively with faculty, students, staff and diverse community members to provide a platform of opportunities that seek to transform the educational culture and create a more inclusive and welcoming climate for underserved minority students and communities through active engagement in research, advocacy, and awareness of issues, concerns and concepts in race, ethnicity, immigration tudies, and social justice. Accordingly, the CRISJ Empowerment scholarship recognizes students who exemplify this mission in their academic and community engagement.

Criteria/Requirements: Undergraduate or Graduate (classified) student at Sacramento State, minimum 3.0 GPA, Full-time enrollment at time of application and award, demonstrate financial need (working class, first generation student, historically unrepresented minority), demonstrate civic service and social justice in the on and/or off campus community, provide one or two references, and submit with application a 1-2 page essay outlining how student experiences have motivated to civic service and to social justice.

Contact Information:

To Apply go to: StudentCenter>Financial Aid Links> Apply for Scholarships OR by clicking below.

February 28 - The KKK, Immigration Law and Policy, and Donald Trump


Many Americans remember the Ku Klux Klan for its horrific acts of violence directed
at African Americans. Although generally overshadowed by that violence, the
Klan’s vilification of other groups, including immigrants and religious minorities,
also was central to its philosophy of white Anglo-Saxon supremacy. Some modern
anti-immigrant advocates, including former President and frontrunner for the 2024
Republican nomination Donald Trump, advocate remarkably similar anti-immigrant
policies of the KKK, with racial animus on full display. This talk analyzes the enduring
legacy of the KKK’s immigration philosophy on contemporary U.S. immigration law
and politics.

Farmworker Migrant Housing and the Limits of Citizenship and Education

Each year, hundreds of US citizens in California are displaced and Mexican-American youth miss months of school. Learn more in this documentary about living at the edges of citizenship, effects in children's education and engage in conversation with filmaker, farmworker's rights activists and listen to personal experiences from of our students on the topic of the 50 mile rule, currently under exemption only until 2024, and the need to be made permanent.

Tuesday, November 14, 2023

Cottonwood Suite, 2nd Floor | University Union


comovivimos-002.png6:00pm - 7:20pm - Film Screening of “Como Vivimos (How we live)”

Presented by: Aggie Ebrahimi Bazaz, Filmaker

7:30pm - 8:30pm - Panel: Alumni, Sac State students and farmworker’s rights activists

  • Dr. Joaquin Arambula, California State Assembly Member
  • Dr. Ann Lopez, Director of Center for Farmworker Families
  • Luis Magaña, Organizacion de Trabajadores Agricolas de California
  • Lauren Ornelas, Founder/Director, Food Empowerment Project
  • Jose Modesto, Sacramento State Alumnus
  • CAMP Students, Sacramento State


Request accommodations one week prior to event. Download flyer HERE.



Building Bridges for Community Empowerment & Social Justice

Join us at this celebration and fundraiser organized by CRISJ in support of students & community empowerment through research, mentorship, and civic engagement.

Music | Food | Art & More - May 9, 2023

5:30 - 9:00pm

Harper Alumni Center | Sacramento State

Keynote Speaker: Jose Artiga

Jose Artiga is a long-time human, environmental, and immigrant rights advocate in the United States and Central America, and the current executive director of The SHARE FOUNDATION since 1995. Jose has organized and/or led delegations to El Salvador and Honduras, introducing over 10,120 U.S. delegates representing all segments of the US society, including interfaith leaders and mem-bers of Congress to the Central American reality. Jose has been honored by human rights and immigrant rights organizations across the United States and in El Salvador and Honduras. READ MORE HERE.


Tickets: General - $60, Students - $40, Table (seats 10) - $600

Additional donations can be made to the following areas. Thank you for your generous support! These donations are tax deductible!

MAKE A DONATION: CRISJ Student Empowerment Scholarship



Research Mentorship Conference (Virtual)

Date/Time: TBD

Students and faculty mentors participating in the inaugural cohort of the CRISJ Research Mentorship Program will present their research, creative, and scholarly work. Come listen to and engage with students and their faculty mentors as they discuss their exciting, social justice-informed research projects. The conference presentations center on timely, critical issues such as immigration policy, bilingualism, mental health, ethnic studies, true crime podcasts, and other engaging topics. The conference is free, virtual, and open to the public.


Literacy Empowerment Project

Literacy Empowerment Project - empowers historically marginalized and minoritized youth through multi-modal expressions of literacy by highlighting the cultural, community, and home literacies underserved students possess. Students learn to use their existing knowledge as tools that support their learning in academic settings while strengthening their identities, languages, and customs. We establish partnerships with local schools.​

For more information or to join the Literacy Empowerment Project committee, please contact Assistant Professor Araceli Feliz

Youth Literacy Empowerment Day

“Seeds to Roots: Cultivating healthy futures” “Semillas a Raices: Cultivando futuros sanos”
~ Building student empowerment through cultural, community, and home literacies ~

Workshops | Food | Campus tour - Friday, April 14, 2023
10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Sacramento State

'Building Justice' podcast

podcast logo

Building Justice explores critical issues affecting our communities with the hopes of creating a healthier and more just world.

The ongoing conversations between the Sacramento State community and regional partners aim to spark understandings, empathies, and motivation to join the struggle for a better future for all.

For more information or to join the podcast steering and production committee, please contact Professor Monicka Tutschka.

Chicanx Indigeneity and Resistance: Art for Social Justice

Thursday, October 13, 2022

Redwood Room, University Union, 12:00 - 3:15PM


Xico Gonzalez: “Hermosa Rebeldia: The Intersection of Art, Culture, and Activism” 12:00 - 1:15 P.M.

Aztlan Underground: “In Xóchitl In Cuicatl: Flower and Song Music as a Medicine and Tool for Social Justice” 1:30 - 2:45 P.M.

Community Empowerment Faire: "Dignity, Solidarity & Community Building"

April 4, 2022

The Center on Race, Immigration, and Social Justice (CRISJ) in collaboration with Community Engagement Center (CEC) and the Sacramento Poor People's Campagin invites students to their annual Community Empowerment Faire.

In honor and celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s life and activisim, there will be a press release and public readings of his prophetic “Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence” speech, followed by the faire where students will be able to engage with various community organizations to learn about their services and how they can get empowered and involved on issues of social justice.

The goal of the event is to help students:

  1. Feel a sense of purpose by addressing issues that matter to them
  2. Motivate them to give back their communities, and
  3. Offer them the opportunity to apply their academic knowledge in the field, providing them the biggest lessons on what works and what does not in the service of social and environmental justice.

Violence Against Indigenous Women Across The Americas

March 8, 2022

Keynote: Dr. Katie Valenzuela, City of Sacramento Councilmember, District 4

Virtual Panel: Morning Star Gali, Restoring Justice for Indigenous Peoples; Irene de Barraicua, Lideres Campesinas; Edith Elizondo, Alerta Raquel; Andrea Guadalupe Luna Santana, Diversidad Sexual de Chihuahua

For more information contact Danielle Slakoff or Maria Vargas.

US Neo-Colonialism and Migration to El Norte

November 4, 2021

The forum's objective is to increase understandings of the root causes of migration, highlight the centrality of US interventions (e.g., military, foreign investment, and labor recruitment) in causing migrations to the north. Significantly, the U.S. one-sided framing about why people migrate to el norte, emphasizes poverty, violence, corrupt governments, and lack of human rights... However, missing from the full picture is the marginalization of migrant-sending countries to the United States by its expansionism and domination of the Americas going back to the Monroe Doctrine 1823.

For more information contact Manuel Barajas or

Title Time
Keynote: Dr. Paul Almeida 12 noon - 1:15 p.m.
Musica de Resistencia (Music of Resistance) 1:15 - 1:30 p.m.
Panel: Voices Challenging Neo-Colonial Systems 1:30 - 2:45 p.m.

Advancing Equity in Higher Education: From the Margins

October 12, 2021

keynote speaker

The CRISJ forum, Advancing Equity in Higher Education: From the Margins explores what context preceded anti-racism initiatives and how to advance equity in higher education.

Mary Romero, Professor of Justice and Social Inquiry at Arizona State University, will be a distinguished keynote speaker. The panel will include Terry Scott (CFA Representation Specialist), Dr. Ryan Fuller, Dr. Amber Gonzalez, and Dr. Bernard Brown.

For more information contact Manuel Barajas or

Title Time Format
Keynote: Dr.Mary Romero 12 noon - 1:15 p.m. 40-45 min + Q & A
Panel 1:30 - 2:45 p.m. 40-45 min + Q & A

Un/Equal Freedoms Exhibition

Opened Thursday, May 13

can't breathe image

Un/Equal Freedoms: Expressions for Social Justice is a multidisciplinary exhibition of art and prose reckoning with the unequal freedoms embedded in our social structures.

Representing work by professional and emerging artists, individuals and groups, students and community members, the group offers artistic expressions for social justice, laying bare these unequal freedoms. Themes include:

  • Empowering marginalized voices,
  • Representing forward action,
  • Offering a vision for an improved society.

Image: Kachiside Madu

Too Close to Slavery: Essential Labor in California Agriculture

At Sacramento State, the Center on Race, Immigration, and Social Justice (CRISJ) hosted a zoom forum Too Close to Slavery: Essential Workers in California Agriculture on April 7, 2021.

Farm labor conditions are harsh in California agriculture, and became even more so during the pandemic period — as the COVID 19 infections have hit hard farm workers given their housing and working circumstances. This forum addressed farm workers' labor conditions, their centrality to the wealth of California, what can be done to improve their lives beyond the fields, and what are some of the immediate resources available to them and to their advocates.

Featured scholars, community leaders, and artists who through their work help us understand, empathize and mobilize on behalf of farm working communities.

For more information please contact Dr. Manuel Barajas, Professor of Sociology, or

Too close to slavery forum image