Simon Gonzales

Ph.D. student, Department of Anthropology


Simon’s research goals in medical anthropology are for Dallas Texans and neighbors to focus on the cultural gaps in our medical and mental health and wellness systems, especially for Chicanos/as. Simon is interested in the mental health of family dynamics that are affected by a family member’s substance abuse. Access to health resources might not always be a financial or cultural possibility. Therefore, he is interested in alternative pre-health treatment methods through art therapy and personal narratives, while using intersectional theories, group counseling theories and applied anthropology that incorporate a smooth transition toward care through mutual aid and collaborations. 


Simon is a Tejano-Chicano from Dallas, Texas, who graduated with a B.A. in psychology and a concentration in drama from University of Dallas in 2017. He was accepted to the University of Houston with both a graduate fellowship and teaching fellowship, where he earned an M.F.A. in art with a graduate certificate in women’s studies in 2020. Simon traveled to Central America in 2021, while taking online classes with Dallas College, eventually earning both a certificate and an Associate of Applied Science in substance abuse counseling, as well as becoming a Texas licensed chemical dependency counselor intern. He also finished an Associate of Science in liberal sciences from Dallas College in the summer of 2023, while working as a lab specialist. Simultaneously, Simon enrolled at the University of North Texas in 2022, where he took online graduate anthropology classes to advance his background in medical anthropology. In his free time, Simon teaches kindergarten Sunday school, volunteers delivering medical equipment with his best friend and enjoys going to the gym.