Spring Graduate Research Colloquium II: Resilience in Transnational Communities



April 28, 2022
3:30 pmto5:00 pm

CLLAS Research Series

125 McKenzie

Alejandra Pedraza (Global Studies)

“The expansion of caregiving during the COVID-19 pandemic: Insights from a migrant-sending community in rural Mexico” 

Alejandra Pedraza is a second-year graduate student in the Global Studies department. She received her B.A. from the University of Colorado Boulder in Environmental Studies and Biology. During her undergraduate career, Alejandra immersed herself in various conservation and sustainability projects in Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama. This is where her passion for international development and Latin American affairs first developed. Upon graduating, Alejandra joined Peace Corps Mexico, where she worked until the COVID-19 pandemic forced her evacuation. 

For two years, Alejandra called a remote Mexican village in the Sierra Madre Occidental home. Through integration in an isolated village entirely dependent on remittances and living alongside the people directly impacted by the dynamics of transnational family life, particularly the women and children that remain behind, Alejandra discovered her passion for understanding Mexican American migration, transnational families, and the gendered costs of migration.  

Alejandra is currently working on a qualitative research study seeking to elucidate the ways the COVID-19 pandemic is expanding gendered caregiving responsibilities in remittance-dependent households in rural Mexico. In her research, Alejandra forefronts the social conditions of migration that have been exacerbated during the pandemic and the deep wellbeing implications these changes have for the mothers in her sample.  

David Peña (School of Art and Design)

“Ecotone” 

David Peña is a multidisciplinary artist, educator and cultural organizer from the border region between Tijuana and San Diego. I use the visual vocabulary of patterns as a way to contemplate personal and public occurrences and as a point of collaboration. I seek to connect my visual practice with my commitment to people and place, exploring ways to bridge community. I use my work as a vehicle for collaboration with artists engaged in diverse media, students and the general public. These collaborations have been realized as interventions with text, photography, murals, and self-publishing. 

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