PhD in History
Vanessa (She/Her/Ella) is a second year World History Ph.D. student and 2021-2023 HASTAC Scholar at Northeastern University. As a graduate research assistant, she has been involved in “Reckonings: A Local History Platform for the Community-Archivist,” “Apartheid Heritages: The Spatial History of ZA’s Black Townships,” and the “Visualizing Spatial Violence: Tools for Social Justice Advocacy” (multi-disciplinary community engaged projects). She is also currently involved in the 2022 – 2023 Humanities Center Collaborative Research Cluster, “Queering the Archive.” Prior to her graduate studies at Northeastern, Vanessa received her Bachelor of Arts in Chicana/o/x-Latina/o/x Studies with a double minor in Latin American Studies and Literary Journalism in June of 2021 from the University of California, Irvine. In the Summer of 2022, Vanessa participated in two Mellon Foundation stipend fellowships: University of Maryland’s Social Media Corps and University of New Hampshire’s Summer Institute in Public Humanities. Following the latter fellowship, she received a 2022-2023 Mellon Foundation and UNH Public Humanities seed-funding grant to support her healing arts and community engaged project on Undocu/Queer Latinx experiences. She has also co-lead two “Deep Mapping with Scalar workshop sessions for NEH’s Engaging Geography in the Humanities Institute at Northeastern University alongside Dr. Angel David Nieves and Cassie Tanks, MSLS. She then served as an assistant with a 360-photography workshop session for this summer institute. In the Spring of 2022, Vanessa presented at Northeastern University’s 2022 Grad History Conference and University of Alberta’s Digital Humanities Conference: Kindred Cyberspaces on her paper, “Building ‘Undocu/Queer Imaginaries:’ A Collection for Undocumented Immigrant & LGBTQ+ Latina/o/x Experiences in the United States” (a digital book project). In addition, she was a panelist alongside Cassie Tanks representing keynote speaker Dr. Angel David Nieves for the Barbara Meyers Pelson ’59 Faculty-Student Engagement Annual Lecture at The College of New Jersey. Then, with Cassie Tanks, she was a roundtable discussion participant representing Apartheid Heritages for “Digital Archives, Anti-Racism, and Critical Metadata Practices,” an event co-sponsored by the NULab for Texts, Maps, and Networks, the Northeastern University Humanities Center, and the Speculation in the Archive research cluster at Northeastern University.
Related Schools & Departments
Research Interest: As a Latina scholar, she is interested in investigating generational and emotional approaches to documenting Latina/o/x, more specifically Queer Latina/o/x, oral and visual histories. This way she can develop an understanding of how socioeconomic experiences, racial/ethnic identity and markers, and gender and sexuality identities intersect in the queer framework of education and immigration experiences in Latinx local communities.
Latina/o/x histories, (Im)migration Politics and Journalism, LGBTQ2IA+ Histories and Testimonios, Generational (oral, written, and visual) Histories, Education Trajectories, Gendered Emotional Labor, Public/Community Engagement, Digital Humanities
More Student Paths
Charles T. Wallace-Thomas IV
- Charles chose to attend Northeastern because he was intrigued by the signature co-op program and wanted a curriculum that combined real-world experience without compromising thorough academic rigor.
- Initially an engineering student, Charles switched to a combined major in Economics and Mathematics to build upon his interest in economic and social justice work. He also has a minor in psychology.
- In his first year, Charles took Sustainable Renewable Energy Development in the Global South with Professor Shalanda Baker, which taught him to question systems as they exist, no matter how established.
- As part of the Ujima Global Leaders Program through the John D. O’Bryant African American Institute, Charles did community service, working on the Timebank team which helped him give back to Boston.
- For his first co-op, Charles split his time between the Center for Economic Democracy and the Boston Ujima Project, where he analyzed studies on community needs, like infrastructure and childcare.
- As Campaign Coordinator and Director of Northeastern’s Students Advancing Intersectional Dreams, Charles had spoken to people like Patrisse Cullors, Richie Reseda, Michelle Alexander, and Angela Davis.
- Over the summer of 2020, Charles was one of the co-creators of the #BlackAtNU campaign where he advocated for racial literacy courses and for a restorative and transformative justice center on campus...
- Casey took “Global Markets and Local Cultures'' with the late Professor Jeffrey Juris. After traveling, she saw how the coursework mirrored reality, and knew her education was preparing her for the world.
- Casey went on a DOC to Argentina and Uruguay. She wanted to become fluent in Spanish, and she did become highly proficient while living in Buenos Aires and visiting the glaciers of the Patagonia region.
- Casey did her first co-op at the Museum of Fine Arts as a Community Arts program assistant. She gained valuable hands-on experience assisting in arts classes for the local communities.
- Casey joined the Sociology & Anthropology Student Association during her third year. It allowed her to get to know her fellow students and mirrored the small school experience she loved.
- Casey studied abroad in Nepal for her capstone thesis. She lived alone for a month while she researched and wrote about the lived experience of climate change in the lower Himalayas.
- Casey joined the Sunrise Movement, an environmental group that organizes protests urging political action for climate justice issues. With them, she truly felt like a part of the local Boston community.
- Casey worked for the Environmental Data and Governance Initiative, founded by Professor Sarah Wylie. She produced promotional videos, developed a virtual research event, wrote event programming, and more. ..
- Northeastern has provided Sunita with interdisciplinary opportunities to utilize her education in the Greater Boston community, on co-op, and abroad.
- Sunita spent Summer 2019 on a Dialogue of Civilizations in Jordan and Egypt. It helped her realize her interest in Middle East politics and the Arabic language.
- Her favorite class, Revolution, Civil War, and Insurrection taught by Professor Risa Kitagawa invited students to question the motives behind acts of violence against governments.
- Her first co-op was at the Institute for Economics and Peace in Sydney, Australia where she analyzed data on the corruption of police forces in Mexico.
- Her second co-op at Enel X provided insight into battery storage, solar and wind farms, demand response, and the economic incentives that drive the energy market.
- In spring 2019, Sunita joined the Student Alliance for Prison Reform as well as Partakers, a partner of the club, where she mentored a prisoner at MCI Concord.
- Sunita is a member of the International Relations Council and has traveled abroad with the club to compete in Model Arab League, Model NATO, and Model UN conferences...
- Yasser was in the Foundation Year program at Northeastern. The program was a rigorous deep dive into core subject classes that helped Yasser bridge the gap between the high school and college experiences.
- Initially indecisive, Yasser’s interest in traveling and experience exploring different religious texts in high school led him to a double major in international affairs and religious studies.
- Yasser took Issues in Cities and Suburbs with Professor Erin Graves in Fall 2018. As someone deeply invested in urban life, he found the course was an enlightening look at the problems endemic to cities.
- Yasser’s first co-op was at the Boston Beer Company as a Program Operations and Event Assistant. He worked on inventory, public relations, directed brewery events, and maintained workspace organization.
- Yasser went on a Dialogue of Civilizations to Europe in Summer 2019 and took Engineering Principles in Nature with Professor Sandra Shefelbine.
- Yasser implemented and maintained community gardens all over Boston on deserted plots of land during his time as the Northeastern Campus Director for the campus’ United Nations Millennium Fellowship.
- Yasser began working at the Food Project and at a farm in Dorchester, he maintained the farm, harvested crops, distributed produce through donations and food markets, and worked on overall logistics...