Martin Farfan

Martin F - CopyPlacement: San Francisco International Airport – Revenue Development and Management

My Hometown: Los Angeles, CA

My Education: San Francisco State University, B.A. (Cum Laude)

Major(s): Political Science; Urban Studies and Planning

Minor: Race and Resistance Studies

University of Amsterdam – Concentration(s): Urban Geography; Sociology

Selected Honors: SFSU Dean’s List (Fall 2010-Spring 2014); Member of Pi Sigma Alpha Political Science Honor Society (Fall 2012-Spring 2014); SFSU Study Abroad Program Nominee: University of Amsterdam, Urban Geography (Spring 2013); SFSU Urban Action Journal 2014 Contributing Author (Spring 2014).

Selected Activities and Community Involvement: JusticeCorps Service Member – San Francisco Superior Court; Academic Tutor/Mentor – College Track San Francisco; Team Member – SF Office of Economic and Workforce Development (OEWD) Tenderloin Survey Project 2014; Campaign Fellow – David Chiu for Mayor 2011 Campaign; High School Curriculum Intern – Roots of Success; Resident Services Assistant – San Francisco State University Residential Life; Volunteer – Los Angeles Mission.

Why San Francisco is important to me: When I moved to San Francisco over four years ago, I came with the intention of learning about the progressive political initiatives that the City is nationally known for pushing on a large scale. I did this with the hopes and intentions of learning how to utilize those same ideas and practices in efforts to alleviate poverty in Los Angeles’ inner-city. However, my romanticized view of the City soon became transformed and more informed once I was able to interact with its long-tenured residents. I came to realize that though many visitors and current inhabitants highlight the diversity of the City as a major asset, these same groups often neglect to discuss the nuanced issues and challenges that arise from having such a heterogeneous population in San Francisco.

My involvement with local organizations and residents within the neighborhoods of the Tenderloin, Bayview/Hunter’s Point, the Excelsior, and Ingleside furthered my understanding that San Francisco possessed its own social equity concerns. Through seeing how issues of affordability and limited connectivity hampered on these resident’s abilities to sustain themselves on a day-to-day basis, I recognized that there was a significant need to address the stratification of classes and cultural groups within the City. Through this process, I have forged many deep and meaningful relationships with San Francisco natives and communities at-large. These experiences have greatly contributed to my professional and emotional development, allowing for the City to become a second home.

Something unique about me:  While studying abroad in Amsterdam, I had the opportunity to interact with refugees and asylum-seekers from throughout the world at several community meetings and housing rights protests. Their shared stories and personal narratives about day-to-day life in their home countries shed a unique light on issues such as immigration and foreign policy in the Middle East and Northern Africa. This experience has contributed in shaping my views of both domestic and international issues today, in addition to widening my perspective about the human experience outside of the United States.