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Deyanira Nevarez Martinez is a PhD student at the University of California, Irvine. She has a Master’s of Science in Planning from the College of Architecture, Planning, and Landscape Architecture at the University of Arizona and a Master’s of Science in Geographic Information Systems Technology from the Department of Geography also at the University of Arizona. She completed her undergraduate work in 2008 in political science and obtained her masters in 2014 and 2016 respectively. She has worked for the public and non-profit sectors. From 2009 to 2010 she worked for U.S. Congressman Raul M. Grijalva before moving to spearhead the campaign to fight Arizona‚Äôs ban on Mexican American Studies. During the 2012 election cycle she was the Arizona State Coordinator for Mi Familia Vota Education Fund. Ms. Nevarez Martinez decided to pursue a degree in planning because she is passionate about inclusion, civic engagement and public participation in the government process. Additionally, she is interested in housing, transportation, and environmental issues because of their social justice implications. The long-range planning and strategic planning skills learned in her formal education as a planner will be very useful in any professional setting.