Penn GSE CMSI

Jessica Harris

Since August 2011, Jessica Harris has served as a professor in the Department of Historical Studies at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE).  A specialist in 20th century African-American history, Harris is currently writing a monograph examining the contributions of Black women to the Black freedom struggle in Oakland, California before World War II.  

 An advocate for equity and inclusive excellence, Harris currently serves as a Diversity Faculty Fellow in the Office of the Provost and Vice-Chancellor for Academic Affairs. In this role, she has collaborated with campus partners to introduce programs that encourage transformative dialogue at SIUE around identity and issues of community relations. In July 2017, she began a three-year term as Director of the Black Studies program. With a staunch commitment to the retention and success of all students, among her many goals as director is to integrate high impact educational practices into the core-curriculum of the program. 

Harris holds a B.A. in History from Dillard University in New Orleans, Louisiana and an M.A. and a Ph.D. in History, both from Cornell University in Ithaca, New York.