Skip to main content
Open Access Publications from the University of California

UC San Diego

UC San Diego Electronic Theses and Dissertations bannerUC San Diego

What keeps us here is the love we have for our students : solidarity among low wage immigrant workers and students at the University of California, San Diego


This thesis is situated in the context of the current California budget crisis that began in 2008 and significantly impacted the state's public education system, including the world renowned University of California. This thesis examines the various ways in which Latin@ immigrant housing custodians who constitute one category of low wage workers at the University of California, San Diego have been affected by the crisis. On the basis of in -depth interviews and ethnographic methods this thesis also discusses the ways in which these workers have allied with members of the student organization known as the Student Worker Collective at the University of California, San Diego. These students represent underrepresented people of color at the University of California whose access to the University of California system is not prioritized in the midst of the budget constraints. This thesis analyzes the ways in which increased workloads have had significantly detrimental emotional and physical consequences for workers, essentially reinforcing existing inequalities pertaining to gender, class, and nationality. This thesis also argues that the Student Worker Collective and workers have formed an alliance through which they collaborate to make change for both students and workers based on the shared identity as people of color and students' personal familiarity with issues of marginalization

Main Content
For improved accessibility of PDF content, download the file to your device.
Current View