My teaching philosophy is based on a commitment to connecting students’ lived experiences with course materials so that they will emerge from a class equipped with the analytical tools necessary for responding to the urgent challenges facing our world. My background in public policy has also instilled in me a pedagogical approach focused on providing students with critical thinking tools for analyzing social problems; evaluating proposed solutions; and bridging theory with practice for the development of new initiatives and interventions.


I have honed these teaching skills through work with diverse bodies of students across multiple disciplines and institutions over more than a decade: from adult ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) learners and international high school students, to community college transfer students and first-generation university students. In 2018, I was awarded a Certificate in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education from UC Berkeley.


My teaching interests fall into the areas of international migration, racism, and inequality. My teaching in these areas draws on my background in migration and citizenship studies, social theory, public policy, critical race theory, postcolonial studies, and critical human geography. I have taught courses related to international development, globalization, political economy, geographies of inequality and socioeconomic stratification, and critical theory. 

Photo by Mackda Ghebramariam Tesfau'

Upcoming Courses

Fall 2020: "Black Geographies and the Imperative of Abolition" (senior seminar)

Winter 2021: "Black Geographies and the Imperative of Abolition" (senior seminar); Writing Practicum (graduate seminar)

What Students Say:

"This is the best class I've taken at UCSC. I feel so fortunate to have had Camilla as a professor. Her lectures explained the reading and engaged students in thought provoking discussions and encouraged questions and comments." (The Political Economy of Race, Winter 2018

"Professor Hawthorne is one of the most amazing professors that I have had at UCSC thus far. The readings and supplementary materials that she exposes her students to are very relevant, and she connects historical perspectives with contemporary perspectives seamlessly. She is clearly very enthusiastic about the subject, and incredibly knowledgeable about the intricacies of the material." (Migrant Europe, Winter 2019)

"Professor Hawthorne's enthusiasm and knowledge kept my engagement in the course. She is not only incredibly brilliant, but she is able to incorporate a multitude of ways of learning into each lecture. She makes sure everyone understands a concept before moving on and creates a space where we are comfortable asking for clarification or speaking our opinions. Reviewing the lecture from the previous day before starting the next topic was extremely helpful to find the connections between material. Starting off every day with a music video was awesome too. She was able to create the perfect space to discuss ideas." (Contemporary Social Theory, Spring 2019)