Research & Education Intern

email: research[at]

Marina Vergara (she/her) joins the OFRF team as the Fall 2023 Research and Education intern. Marina is a graduate student at the University of California, Davis studying International Agricultural Development. Her interests lie in exploring participatory agricultural extension and ways to better support marginalized farmers. Her research examines a participatory silvopastoral extension program in Panama, and the ways in which this model facilitates an informal knowledge exchange amongst model farmers and farmers newly entering the program.

Marina discovered her passion for food and agriculture in college after being drawn to the interdisciplinary nature of food systems. After graduating from Cornell University in 2018 with a BS in Environmental and Sustainability Sciences, Marina moved to Panama to serve with the U.S. Peace Corps as an Agriculture Extension Agent, working with small-scale, organic cacao farmers in product development, marketing, and sales. Marina then served with AmeriCorps VISTA in South Texas, where she focused on coalition building for increasing food security and youth curriculum development for food justice and sovereignty in the Rio Grande Valley.

Marina is passionate about supporting marginalized farmers, through collaboration in projects and increasing equity in access to extension support and materials. In her free time, you can find Marina outside hiking, biking, or lounging with her dog Claudia, at the local coffee shop with a good book, or trying something new and tasty to eat.