I graduated from college in Milan, Italy. Being the public Italian education system very different from the American one, I spent most of my college classes in overcrowded and poorly ventilated rooms where professors would enter the large auditorium, teach a two-hour long class, and leave without ever engaging with students. This occurred until I took my very first Sociology class. Working over hours, my sociology professor would conduct small weekly group workshops with students to have us practice sociology, not just learn about it from textbooks and lectures. I still remember how he would challenge us to “see” the concepts we were learning in class in our daily surroundings, asking us to bring photos of our neighborhoods to class to learn about the social construction of urban spaces, or encouraging us to reflect over how patriarchy is reinforced in magazine covers. That class taught me to look at the world with different eyes and inspired me to change other students’ perspectives like my professor had done with me.

In addition to a variety of courses I taught at USC as a Teaching Assistant, I had the amazing opportunity to teach my own sociology class at Pitzer College in the Fall of 2022, Religion in the U.S.: Power and Politics. You can download the class syllabus here.

In the past, I also enjoyed teaching Italian to non-Italian native speakers, both at Scripps College and in Alexandria, Egypt.

With my students in Alexandria, Egypt, 2015
“Prof. Cantori was great, and I am happy to have taken this class. Although the topic was initially not of interest to me, by the end of the semester this became my favorite class despite not being a sociology major.” – Student, Pitzer College.
“Learning from someone who has experience in both communities, academia, and on current topics made the class eye-opening and the pedagogy really worked to further my horizons.” – Student, Pitzer College.
“Valentina Cantori is an incredible person and assistant professor. She is very relatable and understanding. She is open to new ideas, and makes every opinion feel valued. She is always there to help and responds to emails in a timely manner.” – Student, USC.
“Great instructor, she teaches really well and does a great job explaining” – Student, USC.
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