30 Grads in 30 Days: Maggie Sheldon

Maggie Sheldon (photo by Carolyn Lagattuta)

Name: Maggie Sheldon

Age: 22

Majors: Film and digital media, critical studies concentration in feminist studies

Hometown: San Diego, CA

UCSC college: Stevenson

Favorite class or professor and why?

I've been fortunate to have so many wonderful professors, it is impossible to pick just one. I value all the support my favorite film professors Amelie Hastie and Shelley Stamp have given me, both within the classroom and beyond it. The Film Department has done an amazing job of selecting approachable professors. Outside of the Film Department, my favorite professor is Michelle Erai, who taught several classes under the Feminist Studies Department. She believes in all of her students and encourages them to do things they never thought possible.

Most memorable experience at UCSC?

I've been introduced to so many films that became instant favorites within the film department, each with special moments of discovery, but my favorite moment at UCSC was when Professor Erai told my Post-Colonial Studies class that her goal was to make us published authors by July. I thought this was preposterous and I decided that there was no way I could be one of those authors. She proved me wrong and set me on a track of using feminist critique to approach film and digital media, which also led to me declaring the film major so I could more fully apply this critical study.

Favorite spot on campus and why?

Stevenson Cafe is one of the places I visit the most because it is where I am most likely to run into the people I care about--plus their avocado and grilled cheese bagels are made by experts.

How has UCSC shaped you?

I wouldn't say that UCSC has shaped me, but I have felt more freedom to explore, examine, and change how I want to participate in this world, and I think this is one of the values encouraged by the student body of UCSC, as well as the courses.

What are your future plans?

I plan on moving closer to my job at IMVU Inc. in Palo Alto, where I will be working full-time in the marketing department. I'm excited to no longer have my attention split between schoolwork and work! It's going to be great to get to read all the books I haven't had time for in the last four years and to live in a more permanent location, hopefully in Sunnyvale.

How did you choose your college, and how has your college affected your education?

Stevenson was my second choice, but I'm so happy that I ended up there. So many of my college friends are people I met freshman year in the Stevenson dorms and I'm honored to know such talented, supportive, and fun people. Many of my Stevenson friends share similar interests, and I've really enjoyed extending my learning experience beyond the classroom and continuing to have conversations back in the dorms.


Amanda Kessner, a Community Studies and Feminist Studies major, decided to organize a trip to work with the Common Grounds Collective and help Ninth Ward Louisiana residents after Hurricane Katrina; I helped fundraise. I spent my spring break with her and other UCSC students, and I'm so glad I went to help and got to hear how Katrina and the government response affected the Ninth Ward residents from people who actually experienced it, and I'm thankful for being given permission to tell their stories.

I got into the Critical Studies discipline in the Film and Digital Media Department and am working on a thesis on Battlestar Galactica, Voyager, Buffy, and Dark Angel and looking at Gayatri Spivak's definition of the subaltern, as well as Donna Haraway's Cyborg in relation to these television texts.

My paper "Continuing the colonial process through video games" has been published in the peer-reviewed journal MAI Review.

I was on the Critical Studies Faculty Search Committee for the Film and Digital Media Department.

I'm coming up on my second year at IMVU Inc., where I've been promoted to marketing associate.