Chelsea Cervantes de Blois: Cultural Engagement to Mitigate Climate Change Effects
Dr. Chelsea Cervantes de Blois (PhD ‘21, geography), winner of CLA’s 2022 Emerging Alumni Award, currently serves as the Lead Climate Security Analyst for the US Department of State. Her work combines research, fieldwork, and policy to address domestic and international challenges posed by climate change. With an aim to improve the lives of those affected by climate shifts, Dr. Cervantes de Blois engages with local communities in their native language to culturally inform her spatial models and research. Read more about her commitment to multilingual and multidisciplinary geographical work.
How are you involved in the community?
I engage in the arts through volunteering at the local museum and artist events.
How did your time in CLA inspire you to pursue your path?
Through the depth of research opportunities and diversity of institutions and international networks associated with the University.
What is your favorite memory from your time as a student?
Being the Director of Grants for the Council of Graduate Students (COGS) and being an active member in the Community of Scholars Program (COSP).
What advice would you give to current CLA students?
Seek out mentors for different aspects of your research—personal, professional, or creative. Establish a team of mentors that will give you honest advice that helps your growth.
How do you spend your free time? What "fills your cup"?
While in graduate school I played piano, did artwork, and danced ballet. Now I continue these hobbies along with my language studies in Russian, Farsi, Azerbaijani and Turkish. On the weekends, I tend to take weekend trips to explore new cities and states of America.
What was your reaction to receiving this award?
Proud to be recognized from a prestigious land-grant research university.
What's next? What are your personal/professional goals for the next five years?
To continue my critical work as the State Department’s Lead Climate Security Analyst and establish new avenues and policy-focused research that supports the United States’ efforts in the global discussion of climate-related matters.