Gund Graduate Fellow, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

Luis Alexis Rodríguez-Cruz is a PhD student at the Food Systems Graduate Program. He studies farmers’ adaptive capacity and vulnerability in the context of natural hazards in the Caribbean. Specifically, Luis is interested in understanding the extent to which socio-cognitive factors relate with other determinants of climate change adaptation amongst farmers. Furthermore, he includes social and agroecological perspectives to better understand how political structures relate to farmers’ vulnerability to natural hazards, and the extent to which such structures impact adaptive capacity.

Luis holds a BS in biology, and a MS in food science and technology from the University of Puerto Rico. Before coming to UVM, he worked with Puerto Rican fisherfolks to understanding factors affecting their seafood safety and processing. Among other experiences, Luis also worked with the UPR Extension Service in the development of culturally-appropriate nutrition education materials for 4H kids.

Advisor: Meredith Niles, PhD

Areas of Expertise and/or Research

Natural hazards, Adaptive capacity, Island food systems, Climate change


  • MS, Food Science and Technology, University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez
  • BS, Biology, University of Puerto Rico at Ponce