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Eastern Washington University
526 5th Street
Cheney, WA 99004
phone: 509.359.6200 (campus operator)

Jereny Mendoza

Jereny Mendoza is currently a student at Eastern Washington University and is working towards her Bachelor of Arts in Government and a second Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies: Political Philosophy. She is the Public Relations and Web Developer for the TRiO Ronald E. McNair program and a Research Assistant for the department of Public Policy and Economic Analysis. Mendoza has presented her research project at the Eastern Washington University 2nd Annual Strategic Plan Conference, the National Conference on Undergraduate Research at the University of Kentucky and recently the 17th Annual Student Research and Creative Works Symposium.

Mendoza was born and raised in Tri-Cities, Washington. She proudly graduated from River's Edge High School with "The Student of Year Award" and 5 scholarships. Jereny is the youngest of three siblings and the first in her family to attend college. She is also an Eastern Advantage Scholar and an active member of Sigma Lambda Gamma National Sorority Inc. Her plan is to obtain her JD/PhD to become a professor and practice law to help her community.

 

Mentor:________________________________________________________________________________________

Dr. Martin Meraz Garcia, Assistant Professor, Chicano Education Department, EWU

 

TRiO McNair Research Internship:___________________________________________________________

The Forgotten Members of Our Society: Latinos in the Criminal Justice System (2014)

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, as of midyear 2010, the total population of jail inmates was 1,613,740. Since jail inmates have been reported to have lower levels of education than the general population, it raises a high concern for their re-establishment in our society once they are released. While there has been an attempt to provide educational services such as the attainment of GED's to prisoners of the adult correctional population, the services naturally discontinue once the prisoners have served their time in prison. This study examines the opportunities and obstacles that are presented to prisoners who seek education after their release from prison. The study also reviews the policies in place which hinder the re-establishment of ex-inmates in our society and closely examines the racial groups who are most affected by these restrictions. Specifically, the study will examine the Hispanic population in more depth as it has been recognized by the U.S. Census to be one of the nation's fastest-growing ethnic groups.

Climbing the Economic Ladder: Latino Business Owners in Central and Eastern Parts of Washington (2014)

The population of Hispanic/Latinos is growing faster than any other segment in the state of Washington. According to the U.S. Census, Latinos currently represent 11.7% of the population in Washington; this rapid growth has in turn created the opportunity for Latino-owned businesses to be successful. While this is evident in small towns or cities where the majority population is Latino, very little information exists to inform business owners or the broader population about how Latino businesses have succeeded. This study analyzes the factors that help or hinder their chances of owning a successful business and raises awareness of the success or lack thereof among Latino business owners in the state of Washington.

Latina/o business owners were interviewed via face-to-face, over the phone, and through e-mail. The survey consisted of 30 questions designed to collect information on the start-up of the business, growth, relationship with the local/regional Hispanic chamber of commerce, their use of state or federal programs intended for minority-owned businesses, perspectives on immigration and the challenges and opportunities their business faced. The survey was offered in English and Spanish to ensure an accurate collection of their responses. The total sample for this study was 46 (N=46) with interviews completed over the course of ten weeks. The sample of the study covers the following counties: Adams, Chelan, Douglas, Grant, and Spokane. The interviews covered 15 of the 16 sectors which included: agriculture, construction, manufacturing, retail trade; transportation and warehousing, information (press, publishing, and radio), finance, insurance, real estate, rental/leasing, professional and scientific/technical services among others.

Preliminary results of the study show Latino business owners had little knowledge of business resources such as, the chamber of commerce and economic development organizations, few were associated with their local Hispanic Chambers of commerce, and the majority was first generation immigrants who started their own business without any government assistance. Funding for this project was provided by the U.S. Small Business Administration. 

A Survey of Latino Business Owners in Northeast and North Central Washington (2013)

Hispanic/Latinos make up the fastest-growing among all segments of the population of eastern Washington. Their rapid population increase has undoubtedly led to the creation of many Latino-owned businesses. Yet, very little is known of these entrepreneurs. With rare exceptions, they are not profiled in the popular press. They appear to have little connection to the standing bodies of organized business, such as chambers of commerce, ports or economic development organizations. Some are active in local Hispanic chambers of commerce, but many are not.

This study sheds light on a variety of characteristics of Latino business owners. The sample covers Adams, Chelan, Douglas, Grant and Spokane Counties. Over 60 businesses have been identified, often with the help of the North Central Washington Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Qualifying businesses have been found in all major economic sectors in these counties. The total sample for this study was 46.

 

Conference Presentations:_________________________________________________________________

The Forgotten Members of Our Society: Latinos in the Criminal Justice System,

  • 17th Annual Student Research and Creative Works Symposium, Eastern Washington University, Cheney, WA (2014)

Climbing the Economic Ladder: Latino Business Owners in Central and Eastern Parts of Washington,

  • 17th Annual Student Research and Creative Works Symposium, Eastern Washington University, Cheney, WA (2014)
  • National TRiO Day Student Exposition, Eastern Washington University, Cheney, WA (2014)
  • National Conference of Undergraduate Research at the University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY (2014)

A Survey of Latino Business Owners in Northeast and North Central Washington, 

  • 2nd Annual Strategic Plan Conference, Eastern Washingto University, Cheney, WA  (2013)

Honors and Awards:_____________________________________________________________________

  • Dean's List, Students achieve honor roll if they maintain a grade point average of 3.5 or higher and complete at least 12 credits each quarter (Winter 2010, Winter 2012, Fall 2013, Winter 2014, Spring 2014)
  • McNair Scholar Summer Internship, Awarded $2,800. The goal of the McNair Program is to increase the attainment of PhD degrees by students from underrepresented segments of society. (2014)
  • University travel grant for NCUR, (2014)
  • TCI Kiwanis Scholarship, (2012)
  • Trustees Scholarship,  Awarded $3,000. (2010)
  • TCI Kiwanis Scholarship, (2010)
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