Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics
Former Professor and Director, Julian Samora Research Institute
AEC/AFRE Faculty, 1994 to 1998
Ph.D., 1971. Michigan State University MA., 1969. Michigan State University MS., 1967. University of Arizona BA., 1966. University of California, Berkeley
Dr. Refugio (Will) Rochin was a former Professor of Sociology, and Agricultural Economics at Michigan State University from July of 1994 through July 1998. He was also the first Permanent Director of the Julian Samora Research Institute (JSRI) at MSU and was also a Principal Investigator and administrator for the Midwest Consortium for Latino Studies. Professor Rochin is also Professor Emeritus of Chicana/o Studies and Agricultural Economics at the University of California, Davis, and retired Director of Research and Evaluation, Educational Partnership Center at U.C. Santa Cruz.
While at MSU he augmented JSRI’s publications from 8 in 1994 to over 120 in 1998; posting all publications online for free downloads before the advance of Google. JSRI generated thousands of downloads each month, rating JSRI as the number one source of Latino scholarship. During his tenure JSRI produced 5 regional conferences, 4 books and led the way for MSU’s first program in Latino Studies. Over Professor Rochin’s career he advanced to Full Professor in three disciplines: Agricultural Economics, Sociology, and Chicano - Latino Studies at U.C. Davis, Michigan State University, and The University of Notre Dame. In his career work he has co-developed new academic programs and curriculum, including the MS degree programs in Community Development and International Agricultural Development (at UC Davis), the BA degree program in Chicana/o Studies (at UC Davis); and drafted plans for Latino Studies at Michigan State University and the University of Notre Dame.
At the beginning of his professional career, he was a member of Dr. Norman Borlaug’s (Nobel Laureate) Green Revolution team in Asia, where he generated research on the diffusion and adoption of high-yielding varieties of wheat, rice, potatoes and corn, primarily among small farmers in Pakistan and Bangladesh. His research was based on field studies and interviews with small farmers. He published key reports on the primary and secondary impacts of new seed technology in Asia.
Professor Rochin is a native of Carlsbad California, born in a barrio and raised by hard—working, Spanish-speaking parents. His professional aim has been to enhance the effectiveness of programs and policies that improve education, socio-economic conditions, health and environment, and community well-being. To achieve these goals he has engaged in community service, research and evaluation, networking, and training through various government and charitable organizations. He has worked closely with both public and private sectors to strengthen their effectiveness in multicultural settings. He actively mentors to foster professional careers and academic leaders. His publications number over a hundred articles in professional journals, government reports and monographs on topics ranging from the shifting demographics in the U.S. and economic contributions of undocumented workers to public programs and rural reform policies to education and employment opportunities for immigrants from Central America.
Graduate Level: International Trade, Finance & Development, Business Enterprise Development, Project Planning & Evaluation, Welfare Economics and The Economics of Community Development.
Undergraduate: American Demographics, Latino Community and Economic Development, Social Science Research Methods, Race & Ethnicity, Latino/a Studies, The Economics of Poverty & Inequality, Regional Planning & Development.
Subject Matter: Interdisciplinary Programs, Economic Development, Small Business Economics, Rural Workers, Latino Communities, Globalization, Immigration and Transnational Labor; Project & Cost Benefit Analysis; Strategic Planning & Impact Assessment.
Doctoral Dissertations Directed at Michigan State University.
Elaine Allensworth, Sociology, PhD., “Ethnic Transformation of Rural Communities of California,” 1998.
Doctoral Dissertations Directed at U.C. Davis - Thesis titles approximate.
Buckley, Robert Agricultural Economics, PhD candidate, ”Tests of Labor Market Segmentation Hypothesis: Analysis of Latino Concentration in Places & Occupations,” 1981.
Soheila Khoii, Agricultural Economics, PhD, “Impact of Changing Property Tax Laws on Small Cities,” 1982.
Zhu, Feng - Shu, Scholar from China, “Farming and Optimal Resource Utilization in the Region of Guyuan, China,” 1986.
Mohammed Bahardar, PhD. Environmental Studies. “The Economic Returns to Biosphere Reserve Areas,” 1993.
Bea Calo, PhD. “Chicano Entrepreneurship in Rural California: An Empirical Analysis,” 1995.
Steve Hampton, PhD., “Self-employment Enterprises Within Colonias of the Southwest,” 1995. Rochin was committee member.
Elias Lopez, PhD., “Social Capital in the Educational Attainment of Latinos,” 1994.
Dawn Thilmany, PhD., “IRCA and Mexican Farm Labor in the United States,” 1994. Rochin was committee member.
Supervised Thesis and Dissertations Master Degree Thesis - University of California, Davis.
El Fadil M. Elamin, “Economic Development in the Sudan,” 1982.
David Masumoto, ”Community Development Organizations,” 1982.
Feliz Temel, “Community Development in Turkey,” 1982.
Judith K. Stoft, “Women’s Movements and Community Development,” 1982.
Heidi Knight, “Labor Organizing and Community Development,” 1985.
Louie Valenzuela, “California’s Farm Labor and Strawberry Production,” 1986.
Joseph C. Grossman, “Peasant Co-ops and Government Controls in Egypt,” 1987.
Lynn Gilliland, “Women’s Cooperatives of Nicaragua,” 1987.
An Educational Journey. 2011. By Dr. Refugio Rochin – A Video Presentation: Taking students along the path of his educational journey from the barrio of Colton, California to becoming one of “America’s Top 100 Influential Hispanics.” Texas Lutheran University. 2011.
U.S. Latino Patriots. 2005. By Rufegio I. Rochin and Lionel Fernandez . Julian Samora Research Institute - Michigan State University e-book series (2005): 1-58.
Full-Professor in three disciplines: Sociology, Agricultural Economics, and Chicano/Latino Studies. Developed new academic programs and curriculum, including the MS degree programs in Community Development and International Agricultural Development (at UC Davis), the BA degree program in Chicana/o Studies (at UC Davis); and drafted plans for Latino Studies at Michigan State University and The University of Notre Dame.
Former Program Administrator of the Ford Foundation and member of the Nobel Laureate team of Dr. Norman Borlaug, known for “The Green Revolution in Asia”. Developed research on peasant systems, diffusion and adoption of innovations, & income generation.
Team member of consultant teams and advisor to USDA, USAID/State Department and international organizations, for economic development projects and programs, including the following international activities: ( as Consultant (C), Team Leader (TL), and Principal Investigator (PI).
July-Aug 2014: CNFA Volunteer Farmer To Farmer Chimoio, Mozambique
Fall-2012: Kenya, CNFA Tech Expert on Resource Mobilization and Marketing