Estefania Castañeda Pérez

Estefania Castañeda Pérez

Current Student


B.A. Political Science, San Diego State University. M.A. Political Science, UCLA Political Science Department


Race, Ethnicity, and Politics, International Relations, Mixed Methods,  Border Politics and Policing

My dissertation examines how crossing the border and interacting with CBP officers impacts the mental health, sense of belonging, and sociopolitical behavior of transborder commuters. Using mixed methods, including an original survey, ethnographic observations, and in-depth interviews, this study uncovers the effects of enduring multiple, “mundane” forms of aggression from CBP officers, state violence and racialization at the Mexico-U.S. border.

Selected Publications

Castañeda Pérez, E. 2020. “Transborder (In)Securities: Transborder Commuters’ Perceptions of Enforcement at the U.S.-Mexico Border.” Politics, Groups, and Identities

Castañeda Perez, E and Félix, I. 2020.  “Algo Qué Declarar? Student Surveillance, Policing, and Belonging at the México-U.S. Border.” Intervenxions Blog at The Latinx Project at New York University

Honors & Awards

Dean’s Fund for the Study of Diversity and Racial Inequality, 2021

APSA/NSF Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Grant, 2020

Charles E. and Sue K. Young Graduate Student Award, 2020

National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, 2018-2022

Ford Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship, 2018-Present

Eugene V. Cota Robles Fellowship, 2016


Matt Barreto (co-chair)

Cecilia Menjívar (co-chair)

Efrén Pérez

Leisy Abrego

Hiroshi Motomura

Gilbert Gee