Three SJSU graduate students were named Sally Casanova Pre-Doctoral Scholars for the 2022-2023 year. Congratulations to these outstanding scholarship recipients!
Nathan Lewis | Graduate Student, Physics ’23
“I began my graduate studies at SJSU in Fall 2021 semester. This was not the path I planned on taking, since I intended to go straight to a PhD program, but it has nevertheless proven to be very rewarding. I had the opportunity to do research in high energy theory, a subfield of physics I’d been very passionate about since I was in high school. I was able to teach physics laboratory courses, which further cultivated both my teaching skills and my passion for teaching. I value these opportunities not only because they will aid me in my career, but also because they have bolstered my confidence in my abilities and my sense of accomplishment and purpose. Just as I am grateful for the opportunities presented to me at SJSU, I am also honored to have received the Sally Casanova scholarship. It will both aid my professional development and career and contribute to my sense of accomplishment and purpose. My goal in obtaining my PhD is to contribute to the search for a unified theory of fundamental physics. Even after the advent of quantum mechanics and general relativity in the 20th century, physics theory remains fragmented and incomplete. For the past few decades, physicists have relentlessly worked to unite physics theory into a unified, complete framework. I am proud to dedicate my career to this endeavor and would feel very fulfilled if I could contribute significantly to this pursuit.”
Marlene Andrade | Graduate Student, Chicana and Chicano Studies ’23
“As a first-generation Chicana scholar, this accolade brings me so much pride and joy for my community. This recognition also further affirms that my research is necessary and that my educational trajectory has prepared me to continue on a path to becoming a professional scholar. Following the completion of my Master’s thesis, my future studies will continue to highlight the voices of Indigenous, Black, and other People of Color in environmental scholarship. GIven our current environmental climate, the voices of those who have historically cared for and valued Earth as sacred, need to be illuminated—along with their epistemologies and spatial collectivities that honor nature and other living things. Consequently, it is no surprise that their epistemic and cultural practices center the land and regard it as a place of resistance. Thus, I will develop research and literature that will honor Communities of Color and the spaces they occupy and create in order to sustain themselves. In that process I will also confront mainstream notions of environmentalism and sustainability that have failed Communities of Color. Being a graduate student at SJSU and receiving my Master’s degree from Chicana and Chicano Studies, has fostered profound critical analyses, transformative praxes, and interdisciplinary lenses which are essential for a scholarly career. I am very thankful for the guidance and endless support from Dr. Johnny Carlos Ramirez, Dr. Christine Vega, and Dr. Jonathan D. Gomez—I aspire to cultivate a pedagogy that embodies all the benevolence, empowering knowledge, and tools they have gifted me with.”
Victoria Visueta | Graduate Student, Chicana and Chicano Studies ’23
“It means so much to me to have been given this scholarship as it has allowed me the opportunity to continue to grow and flourish in my work as a scholar. In the future I hope to continue my research in the field of Education language and literacy as well as continue to work toward a professorship.”