Naliyah Kaya


Naliyah Kaya is the Coordinator for Multiracial & Multicultural Student Involvement and Community Advocacy at the University of Maryland College Park where she works closely with Multiracial/Multiethnic and Native American Indian/Indigenous student groups, serving as an advocate for the needs of these communities. Additionally, she is co-chair of the Inclusive Language Campaign and currently teaches TOTUS Spoken Word Experience & Leadership & Intersecting Identities: Stories of the MULTI racial/ethnic/cultural Experience.

As an educator, Naliyah utilizes poetry as a medium for teaching and social change. She encourages students to utilize artistic expression as they examine their own identity, beliefs, and values and as a form of activism in promoting social justice. She is currently spearheading a new student led social justice / arts-based programming initiative UNBOUND Art & Literary Journal.

Self-described as a “poetic public sociologist,” Naliyah infuses poetry and photography into her sociological work. Her current academic research examines the intersections of spoken word poetry, identity, and social problems. Prior to joining the University of Maryland, Naliyah taught sociology courses at Lawson State Community College (2012-2013) and spent five years at George Mason University as a Teaching and Research Assistant within the Department of Sociology and Anthropology (2007-2010) and as the Global Proficiency Certificate Program (GPC) Coordinator in the Office of International Programs and Services (2010-2012), where she was dedicated to helping students achieve their academic and extracurricular goals while emphasizing the importance of global and cross-cultural competencies. 


Leadership & Social Justice _______________________________________

Leadership & Intersecting Identities: Stories of the MULTI racial/ethnic/cultural Experience

You will be offered the opportunity to explore leadership in connection with multi racial/ethnic/cultural identities and experiences utilizing an interdisciplinary narrative approach (i.e. storytelling). Topics will include: leadership theories & styles, interracial/cultural relationships, transracial & transnational adoption, the multi family, media representations of multi individuals and families, the multiracial movement & academia, the history of racialization in the U.S., racial identity development, processes of "othering," acceptance and the politics of claiming, and passing & accenting.

TOTUS Spoken Word Experience

A component of the University of Maryland's campus-wide Inclusive Language Campaign (ILC), TOTUS- a Latin word meaning: whole, all, total, complete, every part, all together, all at once- is a credit-bearing experience that will help you explore marginalized identities and silenced voices in and through poetry to spark dialogue and action around identity, social justice and lived experience. 
The underlying goal of TOTUS is to promote a greater understanding of social justice through spoken word poetry by examining self and society in relation to systems of power and inequality.

Transfer 2 Terp Community Engagement Internship

This course is the 2nd part of the year-long Transfer2Terp Learning Community. In the fall semester we looked inwardly, focusing on ourselves, our strengths, and building our supportive T2T learning community. In the spring semester we will explore how we engage in our various communities now and in the future. We will focus on both immediate and broader communities – family, neighborhoods, UMD, state, national, and global communities.


Intro to Sociology

This course is an introduction to the vocabulary, concepts, and theory of sociological perspectives of human behavior. During this course you will embark on a journey through the fascinating world of sociology. Sociology is the systematic or scientific study of human society and social behavior, from large-scale institutions and mass cultures to small groups and individual interactions. In this course we will examine the dimensions of society and analyze the elements of social context that influence human behavior. You will become acquainted with the basic concepts used by sociologists and the sklls necessary to decode society and social life.

Sociology of Marriage and the Family

This course is a study of family structures and families in a modern society. It covers preparation for marriage, as well as sociological, psychological, biological, and financial factors relevant to success in marriage and family life. The objective of this course is to provide a sociological framework for understanding the family as a public and private institution. We will explore topics such as: mate selection, sexuality, parenting, and familial problems and the ways in which ethnicity, race, economic circumstances, gender, culture and social context impact families and marriages. Throughout this course the diversity expressed in modern marriages and families will become apparent; you may choose to embrace or reject various components within your own relationships. However, keep in mind that for various groups of people around the world, the alternatives are working just fine.