The Ohio State University Corporate Engagement Office

Melissa Rodriguez

LASER Hub Coordinator

I am a PhD student in the Department of Sociology here at OSU. I am broadly interested in the topics of Immigration, Inequality, and Education. My current research interests take two different directions which both revolve around the interests and experiences of Latinos in or around the United States. My working paper focuses on research done on Mexican women's autonomy in transnational relationships. My other interest, and hopefully the focus of future research, is access to education for Latino/ (children of) immigrant/ first-generation college students. This is why I am excited to be involved with LASER at ODI. Being a Mexican immigrant and first- generation college student myself, I have some experience with the barriers, (dis) advantages, and required effort, this population encounters in accessing higher education. I know that in many ways I have been fortunate to obtain the level of education I have, and I am committed to finding ways to help others do the same, especially in the contemporary social/ political climate. I am beyond excited to work with kids to help them learn to maneuver the education system, discover the extent to what they can achieve, and help them reach for those goals.