Neal Marquez

Grad program: Sociology

Hometown: Santa Ana, CA

Undergrad/previous grad institution: Cal Poly Pomona, University of Washington

Undergrad/previous grad major: B.S. in Anthropology, M.P.H. in Health Metrics

Why did you decide to attend the UW?

The Department of Sociology at The University of Washington has a faculty body that will best prepare me for a career analyzing and making recommendations on improving the state of social inequality that exists in contemporary society. The faculty are particularly specialized in the field of demography and data science, with a focus on tracking changes in population statistics.

Where do you hope your graduate education will take you?

I hope to work with a policy research group evaluating how demographics of a particular area interact in a bidirectional manner with changes in public policy, relative income, and continuing development.

GO-MAP’s* motto is “Graduate Excellence through Diversity.” What does this mean to you?

Knowing that that there are many minority students across many different departments that have benefited from GO-MAP is encouraging as it means the community is likely more diverse in thought and representation. This diversity sparks novel discussion and greater understanding of the diversity that exists in our community.

Who has been your inspiration or role model?

Rafael Pereira is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Oxford in the Transport Studies Unit who has focused on how transport can be used as a tool to create a more equitable social environment. While his geographic focus is predominately in his home country of Brazil, his critical approach to his field has inspired me to be constantly vigilant of opportunities to encourage equity in my work.

Please provide one tip you’d like to share with UW undergrads or prospective graduate students.

Communicating with the current graduate student body in a program can give you a good idea of what the academic culture is like in a graduate school program. The conversations that I have had with graduate students about their respective programs have been informative on many different levels including envisioning a trajectory for myself in graduate school.

*GO-MAP was the name of a program that is now called GSEE, the Office of Graduate Student Equity & Excellence. Learn more.