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Meet Your RESI Team for 2023

The Race & Ethnic Studies Institute has been through a lot of changes and iterations over the years, but one thing has remained constant: we are an institute dedicated to fostering, celebrating, and producing cutting edge research related to race and ethnic studies among the community of scholars at Texas A&M University and beyond.

headshot of Darrel Wanzer-Serrano with books in the backgroundOn June 1, 2023, Dr. Darrel Wanzer-Serrano began his term as Interim Director of RESI. Dr. Wanzer-Serrano brings a career of research and teaching experience in race and ethnic studies (particularly Latinx studies), as well as leadership experience in his department (Communication & Journalism). Dr. Wanzer-Serrano has also served as Director of Latina/o/x Studies at the University of Iowa and as PI and Co-Director of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation-funded Sawyer Seminar on “Imagining Latinidades,” also at the University of Iowa. As you can read in his new Director’s Statement, Dr. Wanzer-Serrano is focused on maintaining RESI’s commitments to its founding mission, values, and purpose of: (1) generating connections between faculty researchers, (2) promoting the excellent knowledge being generated by our faculty and students, and (3) conducting its own research to inform policymakers, researchers, educators, and the general public. We aim to be the premier research institute of its kind in Texas and the nation. Most days, Dr. Wanzer-Serrano can be found in his office in LAAH 477 — on the fourth floor of the Liberal Arts & Humanities Building.

Riddhi Joshi headshotReturning to our staff, Riddhi Joshi will be your first point of contact for most things. Riddhi is the Administrative Coordinator of RESI. She provides administrative support for the unit leadership and manages/monitors the RESI email account ( She is originally from India where she pursued her Bachelor’s degree in Computer Engineering and an MBA. Riddhi has several years of experience working in Sales and Marketing in the private sector before joining RESI at Texas A&M in 2021. She enjoys Bollywood movies, dancing and traveling. In her free time, she likes to spend time with her husband and son playing games and doing DIY projects. During business hours, Riddhi can be found in her new office in LAAH 475 — on the fourth floor of the Liberal Arts & Humanities Building.

Mariana Rodriguez headshotAlso returning, for a third year as the graduate assistant researcher for RESI, is Mariana Rodriguez. Mariana is beginning this year with the new title of Graduate Assistant Director of RESI, to reflect better the work she does to manage some of the processes (especially communications-related) at the Institute. Mariana graduated with a Master of Arts in Communication with an emphasis on Organizational Communication in Transnational Settings from Texas A&M International University in Laredo, Texas. She is a first-generation student and is currently within the PhD program with the Department of Communication & Journalism at Texas A&M University. Her research interests lie within organizational communication, identity, and culture. She is interested in how institutions of higher learning articulate/address race. She seeks to explore and understand the experiences of students of color to bring about collaborative change. In the past she’s researched the narratives of first-generation Hispanic students and how Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs) communicate hispanicness to their student population. Currently, she serves as a co-investigator on the EVOLVE HSIs study, which is part of our HSI Research Initiative at RESI. Her new office is in LAAH 479 — on the fourth floor of the Liberal Arts & Humanities Building.

Keep an eye out for future announcements and events we’ll be planning across the academic year. And to stay in the loop, follow us on social media and subscribe to our mailing list. And if you’re a faculty member who would like to be a RESI affiliate, sign up and we’ll add you to the website.