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The New Voice of Arts and Sciences: A Conversation with Gina Sapiro

Part two: The politics of gender

Click the video player above to watch a conversation with Virginia (Gina) Sapiro, the new dean of Arts and Sciences.

Virginia Sapiro, a political scientist and women’s studies scholar with strong views about how a liberal arts education helps build informed citizens, became dean of the College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences on July 1. She was most recently vice provost for teaching and learning at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, where she chaired both the department of political science and the women’s studies program and served as interim provost and vice chancellor of academic affairs.

The first female dean in the 134-year history of Arts and Sciences, Sapiro spoke with BU Today about the responsibilities of the university, the need for liberal arts education, and the ways political activism shaped her views as a scholar. In this segment, she talks about a pivotal moment in her college education, when she realized that many of her peers thought women’s equality was a joke. Her reaction shaped her studies and her career. “I integrated my interest in the world with my interest in academics,” she says, “which is something I’m still very interested in students doing.”

Part three of “The New Voice of Arts and Sciences” will be featured on BU Today on Friday, July 6. Click here to read Part one, “The enduring importance of liberal arts.”

Alan Wong can be reached at alanwong@bu.edu. Jessica Ullian can be reached at jullian@bu.edu.