Category: Alumni profiles

Joseph K. Lyou: Environmental justice for all

President and CEO of Coalition for Clean Air Joe Lyou (M.S. ’86; Ph.D. ’90, psychology) began his decades-long fight for environmental protection and civil rights during his student years at UCSC.

By Kristen Garabedian, May 2023

Bonnie Garmus: Chemical reaction

Bonnie Garmus (Rachel Carson ’79, aesthetic studies/creative writing), author of the smash-hit novel Lessons in Chemistry, drew on many lessons learned at UC Santa Cruz on her way to finding the formula for success.

By Dan White, May 2023

Samantha Hamilton: First Amendment advocate

Award-winning journalist and civil rights lawyer Samantha Hamilton (Kresge ’16, economics) finds herself using skills learned at City on a Hill Press during her fellowship as a newsroom attorney for the New York Times.

By Kristen Garabedian, March 2023

Andrew Kramer: A witness to war

A Pulitzer Prize–winning reporter, war correspondent, and now Ukraine bureau chief for the New York Times, Andrew Kramer (Cowell ’94, history) shines a light on world events.

By Peggy Townsend, March 2023

Helen Tran: A term of firsts

Helen Tran (Rachel Carson ’04, American studies), a daughter of Vietnamese refugees, is the first Asian American mayor of San Bernardino and the first Vietnamese American woman to be elected mayor of a U.S. city.

By Dan White, March 2023

Aliyah Khan: Sharing the scare

Aliyah Khan (Ph.D. ’12, literature and feminist studies) dives into the world of Muslim horror films with the playfully named Halaloween film festival.

By Grace Stetson, March 2023

Berta Campos-Anicetti: Spreading the health

Public health and human services professional Berta Campos-Anicetti (Crown ’89, biology) was instrumental in helping to get the Latine community in Novato, Calif., vaccinated during the pandemic, among many other successful programs

By Lisa Renner, November 2022

Nick Fountain: On the (Planet) money

The newest cohost of NPR’s Planet Money, Nick Fountain (Stevenson ’11, politics) covers smart and sometimes quirky stories that, nevertheless, offer some truth about the larger economy or the world.

By Peggy Townsend, November 2022

Anushka Ratnayake: Planting seeds of change

Anushka Ratnayake (College Nine ’04, literature) didn’t know what the future held for her career postgraduation. But after learning more about agricultural microfinancing and launching a nonprofit in West Africa, she has taken the skills from her Santa Cruz education...

By Grace Stetson, November 2022