Know Your Professor: Catherine Paden

November 13, 2014

Catherine Paden

Professor Paden is Chair of the Political Science Department. We asked her some questions!

What's your favorite class to teach?

I love all of my classes. I particularly enjoy Introduction to American Politics because it pulls students from all academic backgrounds and interests, which makes for interesting discussions.

What's your favorite book?

This is tough one. I read a lot for pleasure and escape, so my choices aren't always the most highbrow. I gravitate to stories about the variety of experiences of women, which can range from the frothy to memoirs by funny, accomplished women like Tina Fey and Mindy Kaling.

Fill in the blank: When I was in college I ___________

Worked in a maximum security prison for three years. This experience of sustained interaction with the effects of structural inequality and injustice, and its impact on real people, profoundly shaped the course of my career. Also, I went out a little too much and wore overalls. It was the 90s.

What's your favorite restaurant in Boston?

Eastern Standard. Oysters and Old Cubans!

If you could travel anywhere in the world right now, where would you go and why?

Key West. I love to escape the New England winters and Key West is beautiful and so laid back.

When I'm not teaching I'm ___________

Honing my stand-up comedy routine.

If you could have dinner with any 3 people, who would they be and why?

My partner and our cats. I understand that cats aren't people, but that's my honest answer to this question.

What song is your personal anthem?

"Better Be Good To Me," by Tina Turner

I love my students because ___________

They are passionate, curious and smart.

I love Simmons because ___________

It functions as an important community to me. I'm surrounded by smart and supportive colleagues with whom I really enjoy working. I feel very lucky about that. I love our students. And I think the college's inclusive environment and empowering mission of preparing students to apply their education in the real world makes Simmons a very unique institution.