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Navigating Diversity with Sam Castro - “The Hidden Curriculum in Higher Education” Part 2

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In this episode, host Krystoff Kissoon sits down with guest Sam Castro to raise awareness about a discussion panel open to ISU students and faculty titled “The Hidden Curriculum in Higher Education” on April 1st, 2022 at 5 pm in the Sargent Family Boardroom/Snake River Room at ISU.

Krystoff and Sam navigate some of the barriers that minority and underrepresented students face in higher education such as the lack of representation and mentorship, gatekeeping of “insider knowledge”, and learning how to advocate for yourself. They discuss how the various programs offered by TRIO Student Support Services can help underprivileged students overcome these barriers to be successful.

They explore Sam’s experiences being raised in poverty by a single immigrant mother from Mexico, how she found her own resources to carve out her own path, and the importance of honoring their parents with whom “the cord is never cut” for people of color. They also unpack the difficulties of not having their families at graduation, but choosing to celebrate with their “surrogate families” and friends and seeing “the cup as always more full than empty”.

Krystoff and Sam then pay tribute to their ancestors and their generational trauma, and being the first in their familial lines to undertake higher education by “standing on their backs”. They delve into religion and spirituality, walking through Sam’s experiences growing up Catholic and still finding peace in religious symbols, but ultimately finding the most peace in signs from the universe “from the sand to the snow to the concrete” that they are on the right path.

Krystoff Kissoon began his academic career at Idaho State University in Spring 2014. He is an