Team Members

Our UC Irvine Public Scholarship Team meets and works as a team to learn about, develop, and pursue connections, creativity, research, relationships, and engagement with members of communities, students, and scholars interested in collaborating on a diversity of approaches to generatively humane public knowledge production and sharing.

Our Public Scholarship Team members have supported and contributed to our archive creation, event programs, exhibits, community connections and relationships, conference presentations, research activities, and workshop series.

Each of these team members have welcomed the opportunity to share a glimpse into their trajectories.

Ana Elizabeth Rosas has had the privilege and shared the joy of collaborating with each of them as advisor, mentor, course instructor, and director of the UC Irvine Public Scholarship Team.

Ana Elizabeth Rosas, Ph.D.

Ana Elizabeth Rosas is an Associate Professor of Chicano-Latino Studies and History at the University of California, Irvine (UCI). She was raised in South Central Los Angeles, California, and is a first-generation college graduate who received her B.A. and Ph.D. in History from the University of Southern California. Her interdisciplinary research centers on historicizing the emotive underpinnings of archive creation, preservation, and dissemination among Latina/o/x immigrant families across boundaries and borders.

Dr. Rosas teaches the Public Scholarship Seminar that informs and supports the Public Scholarship Team’s approach to public scholarship engagement within and beyond UCI.  She looks forward to continuing to forge and share humane, imaginative, and generative connections, pathways, and spaces to teaching and mentoring students into learning from and supporting community histories, relationships, and spaces. Dr. Rosas is the recipient of UCI’s Chancellor’s Award for Faculty Mentor of the Year for her mentorship of undergraduate student researchers in UCI’s School of Humanities and School of Social Sciences.

Natalie Aguilar,
Class of 2021

International Studies (Honors) and Political Science

UC Irvine Public Scholarship Team

UC Irvine Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program Fellow

UC Irvine Summer Undergraduate Research Program Fellow

UC Irvine Latinx Resource Center Arte and Cultura Intern

UC-Community Links Conference Presenter

Natalie Aguilar was born in Los Angeles, California, raised in San Diego, California, and is the daughter of two second-generation Mexican American parents. She is a first-generation UC Irvine college graduate, and the recipient of the Department of Chicano-Latino Studies’ 2021 Dr. Vicki L. Ruiz Award for her distinguished civic engagement, leadership and research activities. During her internship at UCI’s Latinx Resource Center, she collaborated to ensure that event programs were reflective of a diversity of experiences and histories. Currently, Natalie is pursuing a Master of International Affairs with a specialization in Latin America degree at UC San Diego’s School of Global Policy and Strategy.

Natalie Berrios,
Class of 2020

Chicano-Latino Studies

UCI Order of Merit Award

UCI Advanced Field Study Researcher

Honors Thesis in Chicano-Latino Studies

Natalie Berrios excelled as an interdisciplinary researcher throughout her undergraduate education at UCI. She was a Summer Academic Enrichment Program (SAEP) fellow and was awarded the opportunity to engage in the Summer Research Opportunities Program (SROP) held at Michigan State University. These research experiences paved the way to her conducting research at the Criminal Justice Department in Flint, Michigan, as well as her writing an honors thesis in the Department of Chicano-Latino Studies that centered on the disenfranchisement of youth populations. As an intern for Project Hope Alliance, she investigated and documented homelessness among middle and high school students in Southern California. Natalie contributed greatly to The Material of Memory exhibition and looks forward to advancing efforts that support the wellbeing of young people.

Petra de la Cruz,
Class of 2019

Gender and Sexuality Studies and Public Health

UCI Public Scholarship Team

UCI Summer Undergraduate Research Program Fellow

UCI Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program Fellow

Dynamic Womxn of UCI Spotlight Award

Petra De La Cruz received her Master of Social Work with an emphasis in Community Mental Health at the California State University, Fullerton. She is passionate about college access, healing justice, and mental health. During her time at UCI, she was involved in the La Escuelita High School Outreach Program and Student Outreach and Retention Center (SOAR).  Under the mentorship and guidance of Dr. Ana Elizabeth Rosas, Petra was involved in researching the labor, health, and economic disparities of immigrant Latina warehouse laborers in the Inland Empire and Latinx community organizing and resistance during the AIDS epidemic in Southern California. She contributed greatly to Public Scholarship Team events and looks forward to continuing to support inclusively generative approaches to mental health.

Yareli Cervantes,
Class of 2021

Education Sciences and Psychology and Social Behavior

UC Irvine Public Scholarship Team Member

Americorps Jumpstart Program Core Member

Higher Ground Youth and Family Services Intern

UC Irvine CARE Office Peer Educator

Research Assistant Working Memory Lab

Voices for Children Advocate

Yareli Cervantes grew up Menifee, California, a small town located in Riverside County. She is a first-generation UC Irvine college graduate. During her undergraduate education she thrived in a diversity of research and civic engagement opportunities and works as a behavior therapist for children with Autism. Currently, she is pursuing her Master of Social Work degree at the University of Southern California. Her career goals are to become a licensed clinical social worker and advocate for vulnerable youth from under-resourced and disadvantaged communities.

Ana L. Delgado, 
Class of 2023

International Studies
UC Irvine Public Scholarship Team Member

Ana L. Delgado is a first–generation undergraduate student who has contributed greatly to UC Irvine’s Public Scholarship seminar event programs and workshops with El Sol Academy of Sciences and Art in Santa Ana, California. She aspires to continue to grow her approach to humane research, as well as to thrive as a lawyer in the future.

 

Keanu H. Gallardo,
Class of 2020

Chicano-Latino Studies

UCI Public Scholarship Team

UCI Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program Fellow

Richard Macksey National Undergraduate Humanities Research Symposium Presenter and Published Scholar

UC-Community Links International Conference Presenter

Keanu H. Gallado grew up in Pico-Union, Los Angeles, California. As a young Latino student of Nicaraguan descent, he was compelled to pursue an undergraduate education that would make it possible to research and discuss experiences and dilemmas shouldered by Central American communities, especially Central American students throughout Southern California. His pursuit of these deep-seated interests resulted in his research of Central American erasure and invisibility in university settings, as well as in his energetic participation in Public Scholarship workshop series in support of Santa Ana, California K-8th grade students. Keanu looks forward to thriving as an educator in the state of Washington.

Esmeralda Hic,
Class of 2020

Earth System Science and Chicano-Latino Studies

UC Irvine Public Scholarship Team Member

UC Irvine Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program Fellow

2019 American Climate Leadership Summit in Washington, DC Participant

Imagining America National Gathering, Presenter, 2017

Completed an Honors Thesis in Chicano-Latino Studies

Order of Merit Recipient

Dr. Vicki L. Ruiz Award Recipient

Esmeralda Hic is currently the Policy and Community Engagement Fellow for the Institute for Market Transformation in partnership with the RAY Diversity Fellowship. At IMT she works with local communities to address their energy efficiency needs through local policy development. At UCI, Esmeralda worked as a UCI Community Resilience Projects Fellow alongside community leaders in Santa Ana, CA on environmental justice projects including a youth-led investigation on lead soil levels in the community, a food justice cooperative, and engagement between the university and the surrounding communities. During her undergraduate career she conducted research in the Mackey lab on picophytoplankton in the Salton Sea. She is passionate about environmental justice and working with communities that face environmental inequity.

Mariana Machaen,
Class of 2022

Psychological Sciences and Chicano-Latino Studies

UCI Public Scholarship Team

UCI Dean’s List Honors

UCI SAGE Scholar

UCI Co-Cluster Lead and Director, Design for the Wellness Initiative at Social Ecology

(WISE) Committee.

UCI Summer Bridge Scholar

Mariana Machaen is a third-year undergraduate student. She is dedicated to graduating from UC Irvine to pursue a doctoral program that specializes in trauma and stress management among vulnerable communities. She has been on UCI’s Dean’s List for every term of her bachelor’s degree program. Mariana has worked tirelessly in support of university students’ learning as a Learning Academic Resource Center Leader, leading tutoring sessions in topics such as Psychology, Criminology, Precalculus, and Calculus. She also mentors students by providing them with advice on college success, study skills, and coping skills when studying. She is originally from Tijuana, Mexico where she would cross the U.S.-Mexican border every morning to go to school. Experiencing the stress related to ethnic marginalization and border crossings in her border-town community has inspired her to advocate for mental health resources in vulnerable communities.

Melanie Mendoza,
Class of 2022

Chicano-Latino Studies and Psychological Sciences

UC Irvine Public Scholarship Team Member

UC Irvine Summer Academic Enrichment Program Fellow

Melanie Mendoza was born and raised in Santa Ana, California. She is a UC Irvine undergraduate student who is committed to civic engagement, mentoring, and the importance of mental health. In 2017, she began working as an instructor for an after-school program at Godinez Fundamental High School. Here she tutors students from 9th-12th grade in various academic subjects and provides direct mentorship to students applying to college. Along with these responsibilities, Melanie leads and organizes the Polynesian Dance Club. Her goals for the club are to create a safe space for students to express themselves and boost their confidence and self-esteem through dance. Both programs have made it possible for her to contribute and support the educational and psychological health endeavors of 9th-12th grade students.

Jahaira Pacheco,
Class of 2021

 

Criminology, Law, and Society and Psychological Sciences

UC Irvine Public Scholarship Team Member

UC Irvine Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program Fellow

John Hopkins University Richard Macksey National Undergraduate Humanities Research Symposium Presenter, 2020

Jahaira Pacheco was born and raised in Bakersfield, CA, and grew up concerned about the wellbeing of immigrant populations. Her deep-seated desire to further investigate and support the wellbeing of Bakersfield community members has fueled her energetic and dedicated pursuit of research that addresses the emotional silences informing the experiences of Latina/o/x immigrant parents, especially Latina/o/x immigrant fathers raising families under much uncertainty. She was recently awarded the Law Offices of Adrienne D. Cohen Award for Excellence in Advanced Field Study for her research collaboration with the United Farm Workers Foundation. Jahaira looks forward to applying to pursue her doctorate to grow her efforts in support of vulnerable populations.

Stephanie Palomares,
Class of 2017

Public Health and History

UCI Public Scholarship Team Member

Cum Laude Graduation Honors

UCI Chancellor’s Excellence Scholar

Stephanie Palomares is a graduate student in the Doctor of Physical Therapy program at California State University, Long Beach. During her UCI undergraduate education, she excelled as a community centered researcher and contributed greatly to The Material of Memory exhibition. Her interests center around health equity and working to engage underrepresented communities in healthcare. Upon completion of her doctoral studies, she intends to pursue a career as a physical therapist in an underserved community where she hopes to use her background to create an inviting and positive rehabilitative space for her patients.

Dulce Perez,
Class of 2019

Chicano-Latino Studies and Education Sciences

UCI Public Scholarship Team

UCI Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program Fellow

Honors Thesis in Chicano-Latino Studies

UCI Order of Merit

Imagining American National Gathering Presenter

Dulce Perez is a first-generation UCI Latina student with ties to Mexico. Before graduating from UCI, she experienced an invigorating undergraduate education that made it possible for her to contribute to Arts curriculum creation and teaching in Wilmington, California for after school programs working with high school students, as well as contributed to the Generatively Humane event program and collaboration. She presented on her approach to investigating and sharing Wilmington community’s history of changes in its educational programs at the Imagining America National Gathering (2018). Dulce’s invested approach to creatively and humanely pursuing archival research, curriculum development, and community relationships earned her Order of Merit honors at UCI. Currently, she is pursuing opportunities in Graphic Art and Design.

Wendy L. Ruiz,
Class of 2022

Chicano-Latino Studies and Political Science

UC Irvine Public Scholarship Team Member

Community Resilience Co-Lab Member

Wendy Ruiz is from South East Los Angeles, California. She is a first-generation UCI undergraduate student with an interest in social, environmental and economic justice. Her lived experiences have guided her interning in support of Santa Ana Building Healthy Communities. Her dedication to The Enduring Dangers of Essentializing Labor and Laborers was critical to the success of this event program and space. Wendy looks forward to continuing to contribute to the environmental wellbeing and rights of Southern California communities through her public scholarship.

Meleia Simon-Reynolds,
Class of 2017

History and Art History

UC Irvine Public Scholarship Team

UC Irvine Humanities Out There Intern

Meleia Simon-Reynolds considers her work on The Material of Memory project the most impactful part of her UC Irvine undergraduate experience. It opened her eyes to the possibilities of conducting historical research using non-textual sources like photographs and material culture objects and gave her hands-on experience digitizing historical objects. It also provided her the unique opportunity to learn about how her grandmother documented her own immigrant imaginary using photographs and scrapbooks. Presently, Meleia is a PhD student in History at UC Santa Cruz. Her work on The Material of Memory project strongly influenced her dissertation research. Her project examines the ways in which Filipinx communities in California and Hawai‘i engaged in image-making and collecting practices as they navigated transpacific migration, labor, and (neo)colonial racial structures. Meleia is involved in two public history projects that partner with UCSC. She is a co-lead of curriculum development for the Okinawan Memories Initiative— a community history and transpacific dialogue project focused on Okinawan history, peoples, and culture. She also works with Watsonville is in the Heart, a grassroots project dedicated to preserving the histories of Filipinx immigration and labor in Pajaro Valley, CA. She is currently designing a digital archive that will exhibit material culture items, photographs, and oral histories that illuminate Filipinx community history. Her work on the Watsonville is in the Heart archive is funded by UCSC’s The Humanities Institute. A co-authored publication describing Meleia’s work as well as the Watsonville is in the Heart public humanities project is forthcoming in Pacific Arts (2021). 

 

Alejandra Tantamango,
Class of 2018

Economics and Chicano-Latino Studies

UCI Public Scholarship Team Member

UCI Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program Fellow

 

Alejandra Tantamango graduated from UCI Irvine, and highlights that The Material of Memory: Revisiting Our Histories of Immigration made it accessible for her to listen to and learn from fellow UCI students’ stories as well as to grow her knowledge about her family’s immigration history. In 2018, she presented her research on professional Peruvian women at UCI’s Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program Symposium, solidifying her resolve to thrive as a community-engaged scholar. Currently, Alejandra is pursuing a Master’s degree in Economics at CSU, Fullerton, and looks forward to pursuing her Ph.D. in this field.

 

Alice G. Terriquez,
Class of 2017

History and African American Studies

UCI Public Scholarship Team Member

Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program Fellow

Imagining America National Gathering Presenter

Alice G. Terriquez is a Latina college graduate and artist from Los Angeles, CA. She is invested in connecting with a diversity of communities via her digital illustrations, writing, photography, research, and poetry. During her undergraduate education, her study abroad experiences in Barcelona, Spain made it accessible for her to intern in a research group that centered on investigating gender violence. This experience fueled her dedication to undertaking humanely generative research. Alice has also been committed to mentoring first-generation students into pursuing college successfully. Currently, she is writing, publishing and disseminating her co-edited journal, HUE Magazine.

Jacqueline Mary Torres

Psychology and Chicano-Latino Studies

UC Irvine Public Scholarship Team

UCI Summer Academic Enrichment Program Fellow

UCI Peer Educator at the CARE Office

UCI Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program Fellow

UCI Deconstructing Diversity Program (DDI) Ambassador

Co-President of Latinx student Psychological Association

 

Jacqueline Mary Torres is a UCI undergraduate student who has contributed to our workshop development for El Sol Academy of Science and Arts of Santa Ana, California. Her involvement in The Enduring Dangers of Essentializing Labor and Laborers event program was important to the intergenerational reach of this event program and dialogue. Jacqueline’s undergraduate research focuses on the spiritual practices that promote well-being among Latinx students in higher education. She is dedicated to continuing to grow as a humane researcher and community member that prioritizes addressing inequality and other forms of disenfranchisement across a diversity of spaces and communities.

 

Vanessa Nicole Torres,
Class of 2021

Chicano-Latino Studies, Literary Journalism, and Latin American Studies

UC Irvine Public Scholarship Team Member

UC Irvine Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program Fellow

UC Irvine Summer Undergraduate Research Program Fellow

U-Teach Program Instructor

Imagining America National Gathering Presenter, 2019

John Hopkins University Richard Macksey National Undergraduate Humanities Research Symposium Presenter and Published Author

Vanessa Nicole Torres graduated as part of the approximately top 2% in UC Irvine’s School of Social Sciences recognized with the Order of Merit Award. She was the recipient of the Caesar D. Sereseres Outstanding Service Award and Outstanding Chicano-Latino Community Engagement Award for her academic excellence, leadership activities, service contributions, and original research. Vanessa is now a History Ph.D. student at Northeastern University in Boston, MA. Through her pursuit of her doctorate, she hopes to further develop her skills in the digital humanities to emphasize the importance of investigating generational and emotional approaches to documenting Latina/o/x, more specifically Queer Latina/o/x, oral and visual histories.