Cynthia Anderson, MA (she/her)

Academic Counselor
Director of Learning Communities

Contact Information

PDL B102-D


M.A. Cultural Studies, University of Washington, Bothell 2023
B.A. Comparative History of Ideas, University of Washington, Seattle 2006

I was one of those teenagers that went to community college straight out of high school for one quarter and dropped out. It wasn’t my time and it took me the next six years to decide IF school was the investment that I wanted to make in my life. In 2002, at the age of twenty-four, I walked into Seattle Central Community College (SCCC) and took that step back to higher education. In many ways, I was what schools refer to as a non-traditional student. I was a returning student working full time waiting tables and was married and didn’t know exactly how I was going to make it all work for me. At SCCC, I had an influential teacher and mentor show me the same CHID brochure that I will show you when you come in to discuss if CHID is a good fit for you. I did not get into the UW the first time I applied because, unlucky for me, the UW discontinued the Direct Transfer Agreement the quarter after I received my Associates Degree. Unfazed, I started to take CHID courses as a non-matriculated student for two quarters until admitted to the UW. Over the course of my undergrad experience in CHID, I had the opportunity to take courses in American Indian Studies, Sociology, International Studies, Communications, CHID, and Women’s Studies. I graduated as a CHID major in 2006 and began my career as the CHID Adviser. 

My master’s thesis in UW's Cultural Studies program focused on the importance of building more equitable and inclusive spaces for people of color in birthing practices and a focus on culturally congruent care in the process. As a brown woman who birthed two children and had my own traumas in that process, I felt the call to push for justice and equity in the healthcare field. I have been recognized by the University for my work with students with a Distinguished Staff Award (2009) and a recipient of the Husky 100 (2023) for my graduate work and UW community contributions. 

Distinguished Staff Award:

Husky 100: 

I have been the CHID Academic Counselor since I graduated in 2006 and genuinely feel that I have the best job on campus. I have had the opportunity work with so many bright students. I also had the chance to guide students on a study abroad program to Chile, Ghana, and Germany and I continue to encourage students to expand their education through international programs and community engagements. As your advisor I am here to help you navigate through the UW. I was lucky enough to have advisers and professors remind me that so much about a college experience is about the process and not just the product.

I'm excited to hear your interests and goals and showing you how you can achieve them here at the UW and in CHID.