Grace Marchant

The friends you make here will support and cherish you immensely!

Grace Marchant BA '25



Degree and Class Year

BA ’25


Upland, California




Probably Gender Studies


Coop Coordinator and Barista, Presenter at 2023 Gender Studies Symposium, 2023 NSO Student Coordinator, DJ on KPH radio, 2023 Gender Studies Symposium planning committee member, Voces Aurem choir member

What three words would you use to describe L&C?

Kind, Passionate, Luminous

What’s your favorite class? Why?

I have taken so many classes that I have enjoyed, including—and honorable mentions to—Intro to American Literature with Associate Professor Kristin Fujie and Philosophy Methods with Professor Jay Odenbaugh. I think my favorite class has to be Gender and Aesthetic Expression with Associate Professor Therese Augst. This is a great class to take if you enjoy studying various types of media. We’ve read books and poetry, watched films and tv shows, even listened to music for class discussions. I feel like this class has really deepened my understanding of gender studies as we’ve explored the visibility of Queer aesthetics in the 19th and 20th centuries, while connecting themes to contemporary topics and media.

What made you want to come to Lewis & Clark?

First, the campus is incredibly gorgeous. Some of my favorite memories have been literally just walking around, exploring, or sitting in the sun on an ethereally bright day. Additionally, I found Lewis & Clark had a great variety of classes and majors for me to explore. I came into college wanting to pursue something where I could write and learn about interesting, relevant events and discussions. The philosophy department really sold me on this front, and since then I have had a lot of personal freedom in research and writing. Also, when I came to campus, I was lucky to have my tour guide show me the Coop. I immediately loved the idea of a pay-what-you-want on campus coffee shop, and I knew that was a space I wanted to be involved with. Flash forward two years later, and now I have a barista shift where I work with two of my friends and I also work to plan concerts, open mics, and events in the space!

What do you like or find most interesting about your major?

I find the philosophy major interesting because the courses span a wide selection of philosophy traditions and philosophers. I’ve taken a few courses about the philosophy of art, how to be ethical with technology, and what it means to “be” or exist in the world. Each of these courses have shown me that the topics covered by philosophy are quite relevant to current discussions. In my methods course, we read lots of interesting pieces spanning topics of feminist philosophy, Phenomenology, philosophy of aesthetics, and metaphysics.

The philosophy department also encourages students to explore topics that they are personally interested in. In my previous courses, I have written papers about art at the Portland Art Museum, Queer and Transgender Philosophy (which I presented at the 2023 Gender Studies Symposium), folklore by Taylor Swift, and the dissemination of spirituality on social media platforms, such as TikTok and Instagram.

What do you like or find most interesting about your minor?

I’m finishing up my second year at Lewis & Clark, so I haven’t declared a minor yet. This past year though, I have found an interest in the gender studies program. I took Gender and Aesthetic Expression, which, as previously mentioned, quickly became a favorite course of mine. Also through working with the Gender Studies Symposium, I have found that the faculty members and students in this department are supportive, kind, and have valuable perspectives to share with this academic field.

Tell us about your support systems and social outlets on campus: people, activities, clubs, res halls, etc.

This past year on campus, I have found a wonderful community at the Coop. I think our team of coordinators and volunteers are some of the coolest people on campus. The baristas always bring a smile to my face when I come in for a cup of tea, we have so many awesome musicians on campus who share their art in our space, and the Coop always has such great energy to study and chat with friends. If you are a new or current student who has yet to check out the space, you definitely should!

Another creative outlet of mine is being a member of Voces Aurem choir. Singing is a stress reliever for me, and I always leave class meetings with a feeling of confidence and bliss that our group creates beautiful music! Aubrey Patterson is a wonderful and welcoming director who makes an effort to connect with her students and help us achieve our own personal goals as singers.

Also, I host a show on KPH Radio with my friend Renee! We both really like astrology, so every Tuesday from 8–9 p.m. we host an astrology hour where we talk about current transits, discuss tropes and clichés of different signs, and read our friends’ charts (with permission). It’s really amazing that I have found a space for this interest on campus, and KPH is so rad for letting us have a show like this too! If you want to share your music or literally just talk for an hour, I highly suggest signing up to be a DJ.

And of course, I have met amazing people in my time at Lewis & Clark. I am so grateful for all of the campus walks, res hall hangouts, dinners, and celebrations that I share with such a lovely community of friends. The friends you make here will support and cherish you immensely!

If you went on a New Student Trip with College Outdoors, how did it shape your experience as an incoming student?

I did not go on a New Student Trip when I came to Lewis & Clark, but I wish I had! A lot of my friends my first year did and absolutely loved their experience. College Outdoors is sure to provide an initial family of peers for new students to meet and connect with before school starts. I think the New Student Trip is also a great opportunity to introduce students to the beautiful nature and outdoor spaces around campus and Portland.

If you have studied or will study overseas while at Lewis & Clark, how did you choose your program? What did your overseas study add to your L&C experience?

I plan to study abroad in the fall of 2024 or the spring of 2025!

What advice do you have for incoming students?

As cliché as it is, If there is one piece of advice I could give incoming students, it’s going to be to get involved! There are so many great organizations on campus, and I genuinely believe there is something for everyone. On this note too, go to campus events! Our organizations work hard to make these events a possibility, and there are plenty of opportunities to explore. Campus Activities Board, KPH Radio, Inclusion and Multicultural Engagement, the Coop, and College Outdoors are just a few fabulous clubs that have a variety of opportunities for students to get involved and host plenty of on- and off-campus events for students to enjoy! There are also multiple symposia that members of the college host each year, including: the Environmental Studies Symposium, the Ray Warren Symposium on Race and Ethnic Studies, the International Affairs Symposium, the Gender Studies Symposium, the Middle East and North African Symposium, the Transformative Justice Symposium, and the Festival of Scholars and Artists (FOSA). I highly recommend students attend panel discussions and keynote speaker events during these symposia—you will walk away having learned something interesting, and it’s great to have access to these opportunities through our institution!

What’s one of the best spots on campus?

Of course I’m a little biased haha, but my favorite spot on campus is the Coop. Between studying, working my barista shift, and hosting/planning events, these days I’m in the space quite often, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything else! The Coop is a space full of student art, including murals, music, and student vendors! Student volunteers keep any money they make during their barista shifts, and artists keep all of their proceeds from art sales. The Coop hosts open mics, student concerts and larger shows (in collaboration with KPH and CAB), art markets and bake sales, karaoke nights, movie screenings, improv, acapella shows, and more student-focused events. The students who volunteer with the space all bring a great energy and truly make the place as delightful as it is.

What’s your favorite thing about living in Portland?

My favorite thing about living in Portland are all of the great neighborhoods downtown! I can always find a cute coffee shop, thrift store, or bookstore to spend my afternoons when I’m free from class. There are so many food carts to get a great meal from, and there are great concert venues in the city as well.

Have you been involved with one of our symposia, as an organizer or participant? What was the experience like? How did the event complement your academic experience?

This past year, I was selected to be a presenter in the 2023 Gender Studies Symposium. This experience is probably one of the most rewarding opportunities I have had on campus. Again, I have to rave about the gender studies department: the committee members, symposium chairs, and faculty (especially the awesome Associate Professor Kim Brodkin) are some of the most professional, dedicated, and enthusiastic people I have worked with on campus. The past two years, I have enjoyed attending keynote events and student discussions at many of the different student symposiums, and I think it is such a unique and rewarding opportunity to be involved with on campus.

For a little background on my presentation, I submitted a proposal of the term paper I was writing for my Philosophy Methods class to the symposium team. I was selected, and I presented my paper titled “Assessing Dominant and Subordinate Gender(s): Queerness, Embodiment, and Invisibility” on a panel this past March. The discussion was like an introduction to queer and transgender philosophy. Most pieces I read in philosophy classes about gender were very binary focused, so I wanted to explore writings that focused on the intersection of gender studies with relevant philosophical questions about existence and belonging through gender. This process of writing and preparing for this presentation solidified my interest in pursuing philosophical writing as well.

What are some of your best Lewis & Clark memories so far?

It’s so hard for me to choose just one memory that is the best memory at Lewis & Clark. But I must say, all of the great memories that come to mind are when I’m surrounded by friends or the campus community. Shows and concerts are always a great time—whether on or off campus —students always bring together a sick lineup of student and Portland local bands. I also have so many fond memories at open mic nights on campus. FOSA, the Festival of Scholars and Artists, is a highlight for me too. It’s so cool to be able to spend a day learning about people’s thesis topics and other great papers. There are plenty of theatrical and live action events as well—shoutout to the tradition of reading poetry in the garden—as well as student art to admire. Lastly, being a member of New Student Orientation (NSO) is one of my fondest memories on campus. The community feels extra close knit and welcoming in the fall, and it is rewarding to see new students explore what interests them on campus and form connections with each other during the first few weeks of school.

Philosophy Gender Studies