Jenivee Gastelum is a research assistant at CCRC, where she assists on two projects devoted to developmental education and community college financing. She is a first-year master’s student in the Sociology and Education program at Teachers College, Columbia University. A native of Riverside, California, Gastelum attended Riverside City College (RCC), where she received her AA in Sociology and graduated with great distinction. She was also nominated by her department as sociology student of the year. She transferred to the University of California, Los Angeles, where she earned her BA in sociology and a minor in education studies.
During her time in community college, Gastelum worked as an English tutor, which sparked her interest in education. She also participated on the Student Equity Committee (SEC), which allowed her to understand many inequalities that community college students face. While at UCLA, she simultaneously worked as a teaching assistant for kindergarteners and as a college advisor for high schoolers. Gastelum’s research interests include access to higher education, community colleges, and racial and ethnicity identity.