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CHCI-PepsiCo Foundation Pre-Law Public Policy Fellow

Hometown: Stratford, Connecticut

School: Cornell University

Degree: B.A. Government and Sociology

Placement: Office of Sen. Richard Blumenthal

Jessica Barragan was born in a small town in Connecticut and raised by Ecuadorian immigrant parents. She recently graduated summa cum laude from Cornell University with a B.A. in government and sociology and with minors in law and society, inequality studies, and Spanish. With the goal of completing research under sociology of law and contributing to socio-legal studies, her honors thesis focused on how juror bias negatively impacts Hispanic defendants in criminal jury trials in four urban counties.

During her time at Cornell, Jessica was heavily involved in the Latino community in various capacities. She served two years as the co-president of La Asociación Latina, which is the umbrella organization for Latino organizations on campus. She was also the captain of the Spanish Debate team, program assistant for the Committee on U.S.-Latin American relations, English as a Second Language (ESL) tutor through the Friends of Farmworkers program, and member of the Cornell Latino Ivy League delegation. She also traveled with the Global Law and Human Rights Brigade to help provide legal assistance to members of an impoverished community in Darién, Panama.

As a CHCI Public Policy Fellow, Jessica aims to gain firsthand experience in understanding the role of the federal government in delivering critical services to Latinos across the country. She also hopes to develop the skills necessary to become an effective advocate for social change. In the future, she hopes to pursue a career in law and further empower the next generation of Latinos.