Ethnic Studies

Meet Ethnic Studies Alumnae

Unique Holland
Class of 2000
Director of Communications and Public Affairs

Unique Holland

“The in-depth study of how race and ethnicity shape our society were essential in my work as a community organizer and artist.”

Awards and honors: Palladium, Reaching Beyond Award.

What are you doing now and what are the highlights of your achievements or experiences since graduation?
I currently serve as the Director of Communications and Public Affairs at the Alameda County Office of Education.  I received my Masters in Nonprofit Administration from the University of San Francisco, College of Professional Studies.  Before joining ACOE I served as Executive Director of the East Bay Leadership Foundation -- a school to college academic support and scholarship program for youth and worked for many years as a researcher, artist and organizer.  As a community artist, my work as a Director and co-producer with the collaborative group (T.E.A.M.) has been exhibited throughout the Bay Area and in internationally, most recently in Aberdeen, Scotland as a part of “Art on the Edge.”

How did your Ethnic Studies degree prepare you for your current position?
The Ethnic Studies courses I took at Mills helped me develop fundamental critical thinking, research and writing skills.  The in-depth study of how race and ethnicity shape our society were essential in my work as a community organizer and artist working across diverse communities on a variety of social justice issues.

How did being a part of the Ethnic Studies community at Mills change you?
The academic rigor of the Ethnic Studies program at Mills gave me a distinct competitive edge. I will always value the sense of community and support I felt as an Ethnic Studies major.

What life lessons would you like to offer to current Ethnic Studies majors and minors?
I advise students to integrate what they learn in the classroom with practical experience in the community.  I encourage students to utilize the resources at Mills to work with peers on projects that matter.  You don’t have to wait to graduate... you can make a difference now.

What are your future goals?
I plan to continue to serve as an advocate for equity in education–to use my skills and talents to support youth and provide opportunities for their successful development in healthy, supportive communities.