Lucia Vitale

Name:  Lucia VitaleLucia Vitale

College:  Merrill College

Department:  Politics

What Award/ Scholarship did you receive?  Jessica L. Roy Memorial Award

What year do you expect to graduate?  2026(?)

Where do you call home?  Any place I find myself with loved ones.  

With all of the choices for college, what made UC Santa Cruz stand out?  I was principally attracted to UCSC’s commitment to activism, social change, and their intersections with critical academic theory. I was also attracted to the UCSC Politics Department for the incredible multi-disciplinary, multi-method scholars who look at political puzzles in interesting and innovative ways.

What is your field of focus?  I focus generally in the field of global health, but use comparative political science methods, theories in sociology and also geography to explore multi-scale effects of global health governance.

What do you hope to do once you graduate from UC Santa Cruz?  I hope to one day end up in a tenure-track position as a professor studying and teaching on topics of global health

What is one memorable moment that stands out for you as a student here?  The most memorable moment for me will always be the last five minutes of a class I TA-ed with Jenny Reardon in Sociology called “Sociology of Medicine”. It was Thursday March 12th, 2020 and we had just finished a lecture entitled “Who Lives, Who Dies, and How?” As the very last class of the quarter ended students began to pack up their things and check their phones. There was a bit more chatter than usual. As students turned to each other, sharing their screens with their neighbor, one student called out, “It’s the pandemic! Classes are cancelled!” We didn’t know much at the time, but I do remember the collective realization of the seriousness of the pandemic, and the frantic energy in the room. 

What is your one piece of advice for incoming students about life at UC Santa Cruz?  Go to section! Don’t miss a section, and turn on your camera if you’re able. As a TA in Zoomlandia, I can’t tell you how much it means to see faces while you teach.

How will this scholarship impact your academic life /research?  My research is geographically located along the border of the Dominican Republic with Haiti. The border is separated into northern and southern areas by the Cordillera Central mountain range. With this scholarship I will be able to begin to expand my research from just the northern borderland area to the southern border as well. This will make my project more empirically sound by providing greater representation of local fieldwork data collection.

See Also