Maritza Lara Villota
MS BSN RN
Research Degree Student
I am a Doctor of Public Health (DrPH) student. My research focuses on patient and public participation in health systems that serve low-income individuals in the United States. My academic and research interests lay in the study of practices that increase quality of participation for communities of color, especially California’s migrant and seasonal farm workers.
I am based in California where I work creating stronger local health systems. I combine human-centered design, quality improvement and lean six sigma methods to build and implement health & workforce development programs that promote lasting change and drive stakeholder engagement. I hold a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Utah, where I also received a Minor in Nutrition and an Undergraduate Research Scholar designation. After my nursing degree, I received a Master’s in Healthcare Leadership from UC Davis.
My research interests have been cultivated through my service as a board member at a Community Health Center in California that serves over 27,000 people, most of whom live below poverty lines. As part of my board member activities I chair the Employee Development Committee and participate in the organization’s anti-racist workgroup. When I am not working, studying, or serving my community I enjoy writing poetry and traveling.