Randy Villegas is a PhD student in the politics department at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and a Kern County native. Villegas’s research interests are rooted in the experiences and communities he comes from: Latino Politics, Immigration, Civic Engagement, Poverty, and Politics in California’s Central Valley. Prior to beginning graduate school Villegas worked as a journalist and an organizer in Bakersfield, CA. He is currently featured in the California State Capitol Museum, in their newest ‘Unity’ exhibit for his work around social justice issues in Kern County. After completing his PhD, he hopes to return to his community in Kern, or a similar underserved area in the Central Valley to inspire other young scholars, and make a difference in people’s lives. The grant from the APSA Fund for Latino Scholarship will play a vital role in Randy’s preliminary data collection for his project Voices from the Valley of Vulnerability which seeks to investigate the relationship between mixed status family households and the civic engagement of second generation children of immigrant parents. This research has the potential to uncover new data on California’s future electorate and underlying motivations for civic engagement. It contributes to the Fund for Latino Scholarship mission by further investigating Latino politics in the United States, especially in a context which is more hostile to immigrant families.