sociologist focused on racial, class & gender inequality; immigrant and minority entrepreneurship; Latina/os in America
Department of Sociology
University of California, Merced
Zulema Valdez is professor of sociology at UC Merced.
Grounded in theories of intersectionality, areas of research and teaching expertise include the study of immigrant entrepreneurship, undocumented students in higher education, and health disparities and food access in low-resource immigrant and ethnic minority communities.
Professor Valdez has received fellowship and grant support from the Ford Foundation, the National Science Foundation, and the Social Science Research Council. Her work has been published in many academic journals and edited volumes. She is the author of two books, The New Entrepreneurs: How Race, Class and Gender Shape American Enterprise (Stanford, 2011) and Entrepreneurs and the Search for the American Dream (Routledge, 2015). In her efforts to advance social justice and engage with the larger community, she volunteers as facilitator for the Insight Garden Program at Chowchilla Women’s Prison and serves on the advisory board for the American Bar Foundation’s Network for Justice research initiative, “The Future of Latinos in the United States: Law, Opportunity, and Mobility.” Valdez holds a PhD in Sociology from UCLA.
Valdez is currently developing a new area of research on the “future-present” of climate change.