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Student Spotlight – Diana Rubi


Diana Rubi

Monmouth College; Political science, international studies, and Spanish

GSEF Fellow, Cohort 1
Research Placement: University of Nebraska-Lincoln

"I hope that UNL (and all other institutions) remember that people from marginalized groups are worth it. We are worth giving the opportunity to. We are worth getting to know."


How would you describe yourself in a few sentences?

I am studying political science, international studies, and Spanish! I am a fan of laughter and trying new foods. I never (in a million years) thought that I would be studying at a higher education institution, let alone be at a summer research program in Nebraska, but it's been phenomenal!

What kind of research are you working on this summer? Who are you working with?

This summer, I worked at the University of Nebraska - Lincoln with Dr. Katrina Jagodisnky. Her project is titled: "Bring Me the Body: Marginalized Habeas Corpus Petitioners in the North American West, 1804-1912." This study depicts challenges to racial and gendered authority in the North American West and reveals the power of habeas corpus as a tool for the disfranchised. Most habeas corpus scholars focus on those wrongly arrested, while this study: analyzes how Native Americans used habeas corpus to protest their confinement on reservations, asks new questions of Chinese habeas corpus petitions used to resist the 1882 Exclusion Act, explains African-Americans’ use of habeas corpus to challenge their enslavement in the West, and unpacks women’s application of habeas corpus to escape coercive marriages and to assert their rights as mothers and guardians of their children.

What have you learned so far?

I have learned that there are SO many great things outside of what I have seen already. Lincoln, Nebraska is a hidden gem in the Midwest. Also, I learned that is not very common to know professors, deans, trustees, etc. outside of Monmouth. The opportunity to do something like this is more than just a resume line. I met fantastic people from around the U.S., I got to learn about an area of study that I didn't know much about, and I got to see what academia has to offer.

What part(s) of this experience will benefit you most? How so?

The leadership and guidance from Dr. Jagodinsky, for sure! She literally was making connections for me with people at ACLU - Nebraska and Nebraska Appleseed. She was incredibly helpful and willing to talk through different ideas related to academia and life, in general. Also, she opened a world of legal history that I previously did not know about. Now, I have been talking with an MC adviser about incorporating legal history to my senior research!

What do you want your faculty mentor and/or university to remember about you?

I hope that UNL (and all other institutions) remember that people from marginalized groups are worth it. We are worth giving the opportunity to. We are worth getting to know.

Diana with other ACM GSEF students at their research placement site, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. (Left to right: Bané, Diana, Yee, Sharkey, and Anthony)

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