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Plant Futures Initiative Proudly Welcomes 2022-2023 Fellows Cohort

Updated: Oct 26, 2022

Plant Futures continues to support the next generation of leaders in plant-centric food systems, who will propel the transition towards a sustainable and durable future. This year, bright students from across the University of California campuses applied for the UC Plant Futures Fellows program, and eight brilliant student leaders were selected to represent the talent of the UC system and bring their cutting edge ideas to Plant Futures.

The 2022-2023 fellows are:

  • Ana Martinez, UC Berkeley, MBA

  • Nani Conklin, UC Berkeley, Nutrition, MPH

  • Sakshi Jain, UC Berkeley, MBA

  • Yesenia Garcia Contreras, UC Davis, Ecological Management & Restoration, B.S.

  • Carlin Soos, UC Los Angeles, Information Studies, PhD

  • Nikolas Wianecki, UC Los Angeles, Community Health Sciences, MPH

  • Sonya Brooks, UC Los Angeles, Education, PhD

  • Solaire Denaud, UC Santa Barbara, Comparative Literature, PhD

Plant Futures Initiative remains passionate and committed to diversity across all aspects and departments of its work, and the recruitment and selection process for the 2022 cohort of fellows reflects this important value. Hailing from a wide range of backgrounds from four different UC campuses, the 2022 fellows represent a diversity of perspective and educational experience – with our fellows focusing on public health to comparative literature, ecological management to business, nutrition to education.

The groundbreaking work the UC Plant Futures Fellows will embark on in the coming months will be manifest in the design of the Spring Plant Futures Challenge Lab and the 2023 Plant Futures Symposium. Taking place from January 28-29 at UC Berkeley, the program will showcase the fellows’ work towards cultivating the Symposium’s thematic, curricular, and pedagogical goals.

The Plant Futures Fellows will collaborate with community members and the Plant Futures own expansive and growing network to host an inspiring Symposium filled with a fresh curriculum, renowned speakers, and engaging events. Prioritizing sustainability and equity, the fellows will utilize food systems thinking to center plants in addressing the urgent issue of climate change.

The Plant Futures Fellows will receive a grant from the UCOP Global Food initiative and their host campus, as well as mentorship from a Plant Futures team member who will provide guidance and community throughout this process and beyond.

Congratulations to the 2022-23 cohort of UC Plant Futures Fellows!

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