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The official graduate student government at UC Merced

Candidates

Executive Council, Spring 2022

 

President

Name

 Statement

Edgar Perez Lopez  No statement provided.

 

Internal Vice President

Name

 Statement

No candidates  

 

External Vice President

Name

 Statement

Arabi Seshappan In the Fall, I'll be in my 4th year of the Physics PhD program. I have previously served (for two years) on the Graduate Dean's Advisory Council on Diversity (GDACD), and I served as the Solidarity Officer for the GSA last year.

 

Academic Affairs Officer

Name

 Statement

No candidates  

 

Internal Communications Officer

Name

 Statement

Md. Mehdi Masud No statement provided.

 

Treasurer

Name

 Statement

Aneelman Brar  I am a 4th-year graduate student in the department of chemistry and biochemistry. My research focuses on the synthesis of Organometallic complexes and employing them as catalysts for various organic transformations. Currently, I am serving as a Delegate for the chemistry department and also got the privilege of being the chair of the Delegate Assembly. It's been great working as an active member of GSA and would love the opportunity to serve on the executive council. In my free time, I love to bake, hike and play games.

 

Public Relations/Community Outreach Officer

Name

 Statement

Destina Bermejo I was born and raised in Ogden, UT. I graduated from Westminster College in 2019 with a B.A. in Global Justice and Identity. After completing my Bachelor’s, I moved to Tucson, AZ to work on my M.A. in Latin American Studies. I moved to Merced, CA in August 2021. My research interests are in Latin American Indigenous migration, ethnoracial identity, and language. I was the Social Media/Graphic Design representative for GSA for the 2021-2022 academic year. I am honored to have been nominated to take on this position as I am ambitious and taking the initiative already to get involved with the new community I am now part of which includes UC Merced and Merced overall. I have volunteered on and off on my own time and have represented GSA for various events we have been invited to this year. As the campus slowly begins to move in-person, I am ready to continue being a representative for GSA.

 

International Affairs Officer

Name

 Statement

No candidates  

 

Climate Diversity and Equity Officer

Name

 Statement

Koto Babaguchi

My time as an undergraduate and graduate student has provided a well-rounded experience working with wonderful people from all backgrounds, moving from countryside of Japan to a small town outside of Dallas, TX then now living in Merced, CA. Although a university I attended for my undergraduate education was at the mostly white southern town, I had opportunities to meet fair share of students from different countries and participated in some cultural events. I was also involved in a Third Cultural Kids (TCK) circle that consisted of people experienced living in a multiple countries or different locations in the States. Thankfully to that experience, the transition from undergraduate to graduate school where many students come from all over the world became smooth. I thrive living and working in such a diverse community. Through all the experiences I encountered, I not only found who I am but also made me open to listen, curious to understand, and willing to help out others. Furthermore, I learned how to interact with everyone who has different backgrounds genuinely.

At UC Merced, I will actively seek opportunities in research, the classroom, and across campus to enhance diversity and opportunity for individuals from under-represented backgrounds. Specifically, I will promote opportunities for any individuals’ concerns and experiences to be heard and raise awareness of climate, diversity, and equity issues pertaining to graduate and professional students of every demographic to the university community.

I believe scientific communication is key as well as connections with people and institutions beyond our borders are just as important for a sustainable and prosperous research program, and diversity inclusion in the classroom and research laboratory is critical for academic and research success. At UC Merced, I will work with students and faculty regardless of their race, ethnicity, gender, age, religion, language, abilities/disabilities, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, or country of origin. As long as students and faculty are committed to and engaged in the learning environment and promote the ideals for a diverse workplace, my philosophy is that all students should be given equal opportunity. At UC Merced, I will uphold these ideals and lead by example through outreach, promoting international scientific communication, and leading and participating in programs that advance women and minority representation in the chemical sciences.

 

Solidarity Officer

Name

 Statement

No candidates  

 

Legislative Affairs Officer

Name

 Statement

No candidates  

 

Social Media and Graphics Design Officer

Name

 Statement

Samantha Pualani Tucker

There is a historical distinction between feeling pain and making visible suffering. As a mixed race woman I had hate and fear that I lived in society based on my positionality where my pain was a racial consequence meant to be felt, but never heard or seen. For the racial violence against myself, friends, and family members posed historical patterns that made me feel bitter and desolate. Drowned by media images of blacks and other marginalized groups being shot and beaten in the streets fueled my academic inspiration, leading to a fascination with social media and visual culture. Initially unaware of the systemic notions that created my positionality. My introduction into researching imagery and graphic design did not begin until 2013 as a graduate student at California State University, Fullerton (CSUF). The help and support of mentors who understood my background prior to attending CSUF paved the way to my emphasis in research and visual culture. For I took independent studies courses, attended classes on African American History and Visual Studies, and did an internship restoring photographs expanding my knowledge on graphic design and photography. Furthermore, I presented at conferences developing my research interest in African American History, social media, and photography.

During this period, I learned the power photography holds in influencing social media and subjecting black lives to violence. My ongoing curiosity with how cultural images of violent practices evolve to balance ideas of black freedom and enslavement inspires my research and has led me to complete a master thesis examining the defects of the American legal system during the 1930s Scottsboro case as it relates to photography and media. During this time I took to social media using and researching the power of Twitter, Facebook, Instagram (and now Tiktok) in framing my understanding of racial struggles within contemporary America.

In addition, I did an internship at Paragon Publishers in Orange, California where I used the program Corel Graphics to restore old jazz and WW2 photographs to further my understanding of how visual culture influences the general public. My position required that I digitally remaster historic photographs that had the ability to capture the attention of a diverse set of audiences in order to help my supervisor sell more books. I enjoyed the position because not only did it offer me an opportunity to learn more about photography but also allowed me the opportunity to learn more about social media and visual culture. The ability to produce photographs that not only were artistically appealing but was also marketable to hundreds of people is an experience that I will never forget.

Currently I plan to continue my interest in photography and social media to my current position as a Henry Luce Fellow and my field of interest. As a Luce Summer fellow for the 2022 school year I plan to hone and learn more skills in graphic design as it relates to film before requiring the Social Media and Graphic Design Specialist for the Graduate Student Association (GSA). In this context, I plan as a Social Media and Graphic Design Specialist to give a voice to underrepresented groups through the visible representation of photography and social media. I hope with my background and support I have received from mentors as a graduate student that I can offer the U.C Merced community the importance of visual culture and promote on campus activities through social media.

Maia Powell Hello all! I am a fourth-year Ph.D. student in the Applied Mathematics department, and work toward my thesis involves studying users and language on social media using natural language processing methods (primarily with Twitter data). I have been a part of the RadioBio podcast on campus for two years, and have created many art pieces for them during this time. I have additionally aided various programs/departments in creating advertisement flyers in the past. I love creating art of all forms, but digital art happens to be my absolute favorite.

 

Undocumented Affairs Officer

Name

 Statement

Yulissa Perez Rojas From the top of your head can you list an undocumented student in your department or a well-known undocumented scientist in the U.S? Unfortunately, when I ask this question people tend to struggle or don't know any undocumented students/researchers. As an undocumented student myself, I also struggle to answer this question because often times we are unrecognized. Therefore, I am running for the Undocumented Affairs Officer position to use my voice to shed light on our small community and advocate for our rights in the Graduate Student Association and UC Merced. Most importantly, I aim to build a community among us and serve as a resource for student success.
Edgar Perez Lopez No statement provided.

 

 

Delegate Assembly, Spring 2022

 

Applied Mathematics Delegate

Jordan Collignon

 

Bioengineering Delegate

No candidates

 

Chemistry and Chemical Biology Delegate

No candidates

 

Economics Delegate

No candidates

 

Management of Complex Systems Delegate

Kenneth Prewitt

 

Mechanical Engineering Delegate

No candidates

 

Physics Delegate

Mainul Sabbir
De Zhen Zhou

 

Political Science Delegate

No candidates

 

Psychological Sciences Delegate

No candidates