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Catherine Ma

Biography

Catherine Ma, M.A., M.Phil., Ph.D. is an assistant professor of psychology in the Behavioral Sciences and Human Services department at Kingsborough Community College. Her love of psychology trumped being an accountant when she first took Introduction to Psychology at Baruch College. She later transferred to The University at Albany where she met the love of her life and received her bachelor’s degree majoring in psychology. As she continued to pursue her love of psychology, she earned her master’s degree in psychology from Hunter College while working as the assistant undergraduate psychology advisor. Her thesis advisor planted the seeds of further graduate study and she earned her master’s degree in philosophy and doctoral degree in social-personality psychology at the Graduate Center of CUNY. She began her teaching career after her writing fellowship ended at the College of Staten Island and has honed her teaching skills while being an adjunct and later a substitute lecturer in their psychology department. Having enjoyed her experiences at so many CUNY institutions, she is ecstatic to continue inspiring students in her psychology classes just as her professors had inspired her.


Courses

PSY 11: Introduction to Psychology
PSY 32: Human Growth & Development
PSY 30: Child and Adolescent Development
PSY 28: Contemporary Views in in Psychology - The Psychology of Immigration
BEH 70: Introduction to Research
BEH 71: Conducting Research Honors Enrichment Component (HEC) Courses


Education

Graduate School and University Center of the City University of New York

Ph.D. in Social-Personality Psychology, Dissertation: Eat at Mom’s: Reclaiming and Rebuilding the Breastfeeding Paradigm with Women’s Voices

Master of Philosophy

Certificate in Interactive Technology and Pedagogy

Hunter College, City University of New York

Master of Arts in Psychology 

State University of New York at Albany     

Bachelor of Arts, major in Psychology


College Teaching

Dr. Ma has extensive experience teaching a wide variety of introductory and advanced psychology courses including Introduction to Psychology, Human Growth & Development, Child and Adolescent Development, Statistics in Psychology, Research Methods, and Health Psychology. She is interested in creating new courses such as her newest course in Contemporary Views in in Psychology (PSY 2800) that focuses on the Psychology of Immigration. This new course takes a critical look at the stresses unique to immigrants living in the United States. In this course, we examine what does it mean to be American, residential schools, the Model Minority, the plight of migrant workers, intergenerational trauma, the relationship of food and immigration, citizenship, negotiating a sense of belonging, xenophobia, and the Black Lives Matter movement.


Selected Publications and/or Other Resources


 

Selected Publications and/or Other Resources

Ma, C. (2018, forthcoming). I’m MY Breastfeeding Expert”: How First Time Mothers Reclaimed Their Power Through Breastfeeding. In A. Einion and J. Rinaldi (Eds.), Bearing the weight of the world: Exploring maternal embodiment. Ontario, CA: Demeter Press.

Ma, C. (2018, forthcoming). Quit Calling My Kid, Yao Ming: Reflections of Race and Class From a Chinese Basketball Mom. In J. Battaglia, R. Bromwich, and P. Redela (Eds.), Mothering, Mothers, and Sport: Experiences, Representations, Resistances. Ontario, CA: Demeter Press.

Ma, C. (2018, forthcoming). Sang Duc Ho. In N. Khanna (Ed), Shades of Prejudice: Asian American Women on Colorism in America. New York, NY: NYU Press.

Ma, C. & Byas, T. The Impact of Teaching Immigration Classes in a Large Public University Post Election. Presented at the Sustaining Diverse and Inclusive Communities Conference, Sponsored by the Mellon Faculty Diversity Project at Queens College, CUNY, 2017, November 14, Queens, NY.

Ma, C., Moore, A., Anderson, D., Naveed, S., & Abdelrahman, K. The Impact of a Participating in a Psychology of Immigration Class Post Election. Sustaining Diverse and Inclusive Communities Conference, Presented at the 4th Annual Diversity Symposium, Sponsored by Kingsborough Community College, 2017, October 31, Brooklyn, NY.

Ma, C. Exploring Maternal Transformations Through Breastfeeding: Using Nursing Women’s Narratives to Resist Biomedical Discourses in Breastfeeding. Presented at the 8th Annual Diversity in Research and Practice Conference, Sponsored by Columbia University, 2017, April 1, New York, NY.

Ma, C. What Does Asian American Studies Have to Do with Teaching Psychology Courses? Reflections of a Community College Professor. Presented at the 2017 CUNY Faculty Diversity & Inclusion Conference, 2017, March 31, New York, NY.

Ma, C. What Does Asian American Studies Have to Do with Teaching Psychology Courses? Reflections of a Community College Professor Post 2016 Election. Presented at the Building Asian American Studies in Polycultural New York City, Sponsored by the Building Asian American Studies Across the Community College Classroom, 2017, March 10, New York, NY.
   
Ma, C. (2016). A Critical Examination of Breastfeeding Education: A Qualitative Analysis of How First Time Mothers Learn About Breastfeeding. The Journal of Mother Studies, 1, 1-23.

Ma, C. What do Asian American Studies have to do with Teaching Psychology Courses? Reflections of a Community College Psychology Professor. Presented at the 3rd Annual Diversity Symposium, Sponsored by Kingsborough Community College, 2016, November 3, Brooklyn, NY.

Ma, C. Empowering Parents Workshop, Sponsored by The Women's Center, Kingsborough Community College; 2016, October 18, Brooklyn, NY.

Ma, C. Dodging Booby Traps: How the Breast is Best Ideology Undermines Maternal Breastfeeding Efforts.  Presented at the Eastern Sociological Society: Mini-Conference on Reproduction XII: Ideologies of Motherhood, The Boston Park Plaza Hotel; 2016, March 17-20, Boston, MA.

Ma, C. Game Changers Within Breastfeeding:  How Listening to One's Inner Voice Can Help First Time Mothers with Breastfeeding.  Presented at Women's History Month, Kingsborough Community College; 2016, March 29, Brooklyn, NY.

Ma, C. Mother Knows Best: What First Time Mothers Teach Us About Breastfeeding Pedagogies.  Presented at the Museum of Motherhood Conference: Theorizing Motherhood in the Academy; 2016, Manhattan College, May 6-7, Bronx, NY.

Ma, C. Do You Deserve to Be Happy? Exploring the Relationship Between Happiness & Gratitude.  Presented at What is Happiness? Viewpoints from Liberal Arts, Kingsborough Community College; 2016, May 16, Brooklyn, NY

Ma, C. Booby Traps: How the Breast is Best Ideology Can Sabotage Breastfeeding Success. Presented at Women's History Month, Kingsborough Community College, 2015, March 16, Brooklyn, NY.

Ma, C. & Bartolomeo-Maida, M. Empowering Parents Workshop. Presented at Women's History Month, Kingsborough Community College; 2015, March 16, Brooklyn, NY.

Ma, C. Booby Traps: How Breastfeeding Promotional Campaigns Undermine Maternal Breastfeeding Efforts.  Panel member and paper presented at the Society for Public Health Education's (SOPHE) 65th Annual Meeting, Discovery 2014: New Health Education Strategies, Connections & Ideas; 2014 March 19-21, Baltimore, MD.

Ma, C. (2013). Eat at Mom's: Critiquing and Rebuilding the Breastfeeding Paradigm (doctoral dissertation). Retrieved from Dissertation Abstracts International, 73, (9-B)(E). (Order number: AAI3508705).

Ma, C. Booby traps: How Breastfeeding Promotional Campaigns Undermine Maternal Breastfeeding Efforts.  Panel member and paper presented at Interventions: Women's Studies on the Edge, (Il)legible Identities; 2013 October 16; College Park, MD.

Ma, C. Booby traps: How the "Breast is Best" Educational Campaigns Can Undermine Improvement in Breastfeeding.  Paper presented at The 41st Annual Hunter Psychology Convention; 2013 April 21, New York, NY.

Ma, C. Eat at Mom's: Reclaiming and Rebuilding the Breastfeeding Paradigm with Women's Voices. Paper presented at DATABLITZ!, Graduate School and University Center of CUNY: Second Annual All-Psychology Research Day; 2011 March 21, New York, NY.

Ma, C. Rebuilding the Paradigm: Tracking First Time Mothers' Experiences of Breastfeeding. Paper presented at The Graduate School and University Center of CUNY: Advanced Student Presentations; 2011 April 1, New York, NY.

Ma, C. (2009). If the Breast is Best, Why are Breastfeeding Rates so Low? An In-depth Look at Breastfeeding from Policy Makers to the Bottom Dollar. In J. Nathanson & L. Tuley (Eds.), Mother Knows Best: Talking Back to Sears and Other Baby Trainers. Toronto: Demeter Press.

Events and/or Key Dates

The Parenting Power Workshop: Monday, November 27th 2017, 12:40-1:40 p.m., Room: M239
Dr. Catherine Ma will discuss the trials and tribulations of being a parent and a student. She will include resources unique to Kingsborough that may help students balance both worlds using some humor and her own personal examples of how to keep one's sanity. Topics will include: how to find balance, dealing with stress, juggling school, support systems at KCC, and self care.

Research Interests

Professor Ma's research expertise focuses on health promotion, breastfeeding education, lived experiences of breastfeeding mothers, individual belief systems and how they affect breastfeeding outcome, the lived experiences of Asian American immigrants, how to incorporate Asian American studies into teaching, implications of race and class in travel basketball, maternal transformations through breastfeeding, and the effects of yoga in motherhood. Having experienced every single problem related to nursing her three children, she was inspired to use her research expertise in helping women nurse their babies in an empowering manner and make informed decisions regarding infant feeding. Her dissertation, "Eat at Mom's: Reclaiming and Rebuilding the Breastfeeding Paradigm with Women's Voices" was a mixed methods study that analyzed the breastfeeding experiences of first time mothers across three data waves (prenatal, early and late postpartum). With a combination of quantitative and qualitative methodologies, she was able to capture the ironies of breastfeeding promotional strategies that may unknowingly prevent women from breastfeeding success. She hopes to create a new model of breastfeeding education that focuses on the mother-infant dyad as opposed to relying on outside experts. Professor Ma is also an active reviewer for the academic journals, Maternal & Child Nutrition and Journal of Human Lactation Professor Ma is also expanding her research on the lived experiences of Asian American immigrants which was inspired by her own immigrant experiences and the sacrifices made by her grandparents, Yuet Chun & Tai Yee Ma. She is actively raising $10,000.00 for the Yuet Chun & Tai Yee Ma Memorial Endowment Fund that will benefit Kingsborough Community College students in perpetuity. For more information on donating, please visit: https://www.crowdrise.com/YuetChunTaiYeeMaScholarship/fundraiser/catherinema


Awards Recognition, Distinctions and Grants

2017 Board Member of the Asian American / Asian Research Institute

2017 Faculty Achievements Recognition Received a PSC-CUNY Research Award Program: Traditional A Award during the spring of

2017 for my research entitled, Exploring the Lived Experiences of Immigrant Students in a Community College Setting Post 2016 Election

Fellow, 2016 The National Endowment Fund Summer Institute for Building Asian American Studies in Community College Classrooms at The Center for Ethnic Studies at The Borough of Manhattan Community College

Fellow, 2016 Faculty Fellowship Publication Program, CUNY Central

2016 Kingsborough Community College Women's Center Certificate of Recognition for Outstanding Dedication & Lasting Contribution

2016 Faculty Achievements Recognition

2015 Faculty Achievements Recognition

2014 Faculty Achievements Recognition ‪

2013 Faculty Achievements Recognition‬‬


Institutional Affiliations / Professional Societies

American Psychological Association, International Lactation Consultant Association

Society for Public Health Education

Asian American / Asian Research Institute


Personal Interests

When she is not teaching students or reading the Journal of Human Lactation, she enjoys practicing yoga, spending time with her family & friends, and enjoying the beach.


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