Master's Students

Diversity in Agricultural and Resource Economics (DARE) Fellowships

DARE Fellows will be provided guaranteed funding for up to two years to complete MS coursework and a thesis. They will also be matched with a faculty mentor who will help identify a thesis topic, mentor the thesis process, and provide support in applying to PhD programs. Working closely with a thesis advisor on joint research will strengthen students' aspirations towards an academic career, build confidence, and increase the competitiveness of their PhD applications. Only California residents are eligible. In addition to academic potential, faculty reviewing applications may consider the following criteria: 1) An interest in agricultural, environmental or natural resource issues relevant to the California economy; 2) The potential to contribute to higher education through their understanding of the barriers faced by underrepresented student populations as evidenced by life experiences and educational background and; 3) Financial need. 

For additional information about our MS program and the admissions process, please click here.

2022–2023 DARE Fellows

Ricardo Sanchez-Molinero

Ricardo received his BS in Managerial Economics at UC Davis in 2020.  Prior to joining the ARE MS program, Ricardo worked for several years in the food retail sector. Ricardo’s research interests lie in environmental and natural resource economics, with a focus on the rapidly evolving electricity market.

What has been the most rewarding aspect of the MS program?

"By far the most rewarding aspect of the MS program has been the connections that I have been able to establish with my cohort, with PhD students from the ARE department, and with my professors. The friendly culture in the department has made it easy to connect with others." 

What has been the biggest challenge you have faced as a MS student?

"The biggest challenge I have faced as an MS student has been to maintain a consistent and efficient pace of study throughout each quarter. I have learned that how you study is as important as how much you study, and that it is important to keep that in mind as you get through each quarter." 

Alexis Vivas Flores
Vivas Flores

Alexis received a BS in Managerial Economics and BA in Spanish from UC Davis in 2022.  As an undergraduate student and McNair Scholar, Alexis wrote an honors thesis to explore public agricultural research investment (R&D) for principal crops grown in the United States. As an MS student, Alexis has developed research interests in the broad areas of consumer demand for agricultural commodities —including the impact of inflation on households’ consumption of fresh produce— and the economic forces governing farm labor — including farmworker welfare.

What has been the most rewarding aspect of the MS program?

"The most rewarding aspect of this program has been the camaraderie of my cohort. There are just fifteen of us, and we take almost all of the same classes. So when I'm busy, we are all busy working on the same thing, so I’m not alone through the challenges. During our study sessions (usually with donuts), we help each other through assignments and to understand class material. In my cohort, we are fortunate enough to have a classmate that advocates for us and another that is willing to stay late after class when we don't understand something. Given the small class sizes, it is easy to interact with professors during classes and in office hours (and yes, they remember your name) which is another rewarding aspect of the MS Program.
Additionally, I value the mentorship I have received as part of the DIRECT program from Professors Kristin Kiesel and Stephen Boucher. They have been engaged since before I started the program, and have continued to support me along my journey. Throughout the quarter they reach out to check on me, and I truly feel as though they care for my personal well-being as well as for my academic success.

What has been the biggest challenge you have faced as a MS student?

"The biggest challenge I have faced as a MS student is not being sufficiently prepared for some of my classes. At times, this has led to low performance, and requires me to review material I should have learned before starting the program while also trying to learn the course material which can be challenging in a quarter system."