SCCC Staff Highlight the Women Who Inspire Them the Most

In the framework of celebrating Women’s History Month, some of the SCCC staff named the women who have inspired them during their careers and persona.


Daniela Weihskopf

Women’s History Month: SCCC professors Janet Gulla, 71, on the right, and Jessica Hautsch, 35, on the left, are featured in a digital collage alongside the women who have inspired them throughout their careers.

Daniela Weihskopf, Reporter

Who inspires you? Who empowers you to raise your voice? Often, when we think of who inspires us or influences our lives we think of family members, mentors, or activists who have had a profound impact on history.          

A few female professors shared the women who have guided and inspired them in their lives. 

Janet Gulla

Gulla is a former student of SCCC and is now a professor in the gender studies department. She has been working in the same field since 1985. From a very young age, she has been aware of the inequalities that are present between women and men. In her late teens, by participating in marches and attending different meetings, she became involved to advocate for civil and women’s rights.

Gulla establishes a great bond of inspiration with many women, from her mother and former SCCC professor Sandra Emmachild, through to Native American Sarah Winnemucca; African American Madam CJ Walker; First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, to American feminist journalist Gloria Steinem.

“The first woman that was kind of influential in my life, especially when I started my career, is Sarah Winnemucca,” said Gulla. “What was fascinating to me about her was that she was able to speak many languages, including English; Spanish, and many dialects of different Native American tribes.”

Jessica Hautsch

Hautsch, who is a recent recipient of her Ph.D. in cognitive humanities, focusing on fan studies, has been a professor at SCCC since 2011 and has also been an instructor at Stony Brook University since 2014 in the English department.   

Hautsch’s first inspiration is her mother. “She has always been incredibly supportive of everything that I want to do. I am very, very lucky to have her.”

In addition to her mother, another woman Hautsch considers a source of inspiration is her mentor from Stony Brook University, Dr. Amy Cook, who supported her throughout the whole process of achieving her dissertation. “Dr. Cook herself is an amazing person and an amazing woman,” said Hautsch. “She is still the best kind of mentor, and she is someone who pushed me right, and that’s why I credit a lot of that to her, she is the one who continues to inspire.”