Social Scientist Day: Student stresses how it is possible to transform the world in her profession

July 22 is Social Scientist Day in Brazil. Read on to see the full interview with Gabriela Kucuruza, a FGV CPDOC student.
Social Sciences
21 July 2023
Social Scientist Day: Student stresses how it is possible to transform the world in her profession

How is it possible to change the world? This is the theme of our 2023 Professions Day series, which motivated Gabriela Kucuruza, a junior student at FGV’s School of Social Sciences (CPDOC), to describe her relationship with the program.

July 22 is Social Scientist Day in Brazil. Accordingly, Gabriela told FGV News why she believes it is relevant to study social sciences and thereby help transform the world.

As well as examining the behavior of human beings and society as a whole, social science students need to explore different levels of inquiry in the pursuit of knowledge. “Since 2020, as a social sciences undergraduate student, I have been learning to open up to what I have come to understand in recent years as a maze of paths that allow us to access the worlds that exist, almost invisible, beneath our eyes,” she says.

Read on to see the full interview:

Why did you decide to study social sciences?

I’m interested in languages, power, differences, the present and the past. In 2019, I discovered the social sciences, driven by the desire to understand how the world works, on multiple scales. I’m looking for knowledge to help me understand how we got here and ways to transform the realities we encounter and the injustices that permeate them.

Since 2020, as a social sciences undergraduate student, I have been learning to open up to what I have come to understand in recent years as a maze of paths that allow us to access the worlds that exist, almost invisible, beneath our eyes.  

How does your chosen profession contribute to society?

The social sciences, that is, anthropology, sociology and politics, give us a huge framework of theories, experiences and methods to understand, analyze and transform society.

Based on them, we train ourselves to relate to the differences and multiplicities that make up the social and cultural worlds, looking and listening carefully, using qualitative and quantitative methodologies, ranging from ethnography to computer data analysis, which allow us to understand social phenomena. This is essential for building knowledge about the world we live in and encouraging initiatives in the areas of public policy, defense of rights, production of written and audiovisual narratives, and construction of memories, for example.

How do you want to change the world in your profession?  

As a social scientist, I wish to contribute to understanding of the human and non-human worlds that produce life around us, contributing to the visibility and transformation of historically silenced narratives. 

About FGV CPDOC

Fundação Getulio Vargas’ Center for Research and Documentation in Contemporary Brazilian History was founded in 1973 with the goal of storing and producing document sources of importance to Brazil’s history. In 2005, it expanded its activities into education and it was renamed the School of Social Sciences.

The school offers a bachelor’s degree in the social sciences, as well as graduate programs (both degree and non-degree), designed to contribute to a better understanding of social reality, especially with regard to processes and topics of relevance to Brazil and its participation on the global stage. The institution combines undergraduate and graduate education with other academic and professional activities.

First place in Education Ministry’s General Course Index

FGV CPDOC came first in the Brazilian Education Ministry’s 2021 General Course Index. Antonio Freitas, FGV’s Provost for Education, Research and Graduate Studies, expressed his satisfaction at this achievement. “FGV CPDOC received the highest score in the country and this is a source of pride. Today, the school is teaching and doing research with several indigenous tribes, as well as working with diversity and female collectives, sharing knowledge throughout Brazil. This reflects the fact that FGV is an education institution that is deeply interested in multiple topics related to the country’s development,” he said.

To find out more about Fundação Getulio Vargas’ School of Social Sciences (FGV CPDOC), visit its website.

This article is part of a special series called Transforming the World.

See the first article in this series, to mark World Social Communications Day on May 31.

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