Jennifer Nations of sociology was under the impression that she was going into a meeting with her dissertation adviser Isaac Martin when she was surprised with an award and $20,000 prize. Nations, who recently received her PhD at the UC San Diego Department of Sociology, was selected as the first recipient of the Dean’s Fellowship Award for Humanistic Studies.
Nations said that it was both “gratifying and a little surreal.”
The Dean’s Fellowship Award for Humanistic Studies was created by an anonymous donor with the passion to support graduate students. It is described as a gift to benefit the recipient, which is selected selected on the basis of academic merit as well as demonstrated perseverance to overcome personal hardship. This award celebrates PhD students in Anthropology, Communication, History, Linguistics, Literature, Philosophy and Sociology, recognizing these fields as ones who help to “drive creative innovation in our society” and are “intrinsic to campus enrichment and critical to our shared future.”
Jennifer Nations, who studies social inequality and public policy, explores in her dissertation how it is that states have wound up with wildly different approaches to helping their citizens afford the costs of college. Isaac Martin, in nominating her for the surprise fellowship, wrote both about Nations’ stellar scholarship and about how she’s been raising three young children in sometimes challenging financial circumstances. He also noted that she goes out of her way to help undergrads who are struggling for one reason or another.
A campus photographer snapped pictures of the shock, the smiles, the tears and more smiles.
Photos by Erik Jepsen/UC San Diego Publications.
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Congratulations to Sociology PhD Cristina Lacomba, who will begin a postdoctoral fellowship with Professor Roberto Gonzales at the Harvard Graduate School of Education this Fall. Dr. Lacomba and Dr. Gonzales are seeking to understand how the American immigration policy known as DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) affects the everyday lives of eligible young people. Dr. Lacomba’s primary responsibility will be to manage and analyze the National UnDACAmented Research Project (NURP) interview-based qualitative data set. In her position, she will be expected to lead particular strands of inquiry and to publish this work with others on the research team.
Congratulations, Cristina, and good luck with this important endeavor!
Graduate student, Pablo Perez-Ahumada has received a “Friends of the International Center” Friends Fellowship.
This fellowship will help Pablo’s continued research on the politics of labor in Chile.
The Friends of the International Center is a volunteer organization on campus whose mission is “to support international education, to foster friendship, understanding, and cooperation within the international community, and to create a meeting place on the UC San Diego campus for people who share these aims.
Natalie Aviles has accepted a post doctoral fellowship at Colby College to begin this Fall. This is a new two-year program initiated by Neil Gross, former editor of Sociological Theory and sociologist of intellectuals, knowledge, culture, higher education, and politics. Congratulations Natalie!
Grad student Dan Davis was informed that he has received a highly competitive dissertation fellowship from the Kauffman Foundation in support of his research on student technology incubators on university campuses.
This follows the great news that Dan (and his co-author Professor Amy Binder) have had two papers accepted, one on “Career Funneling” at elite universities (to appear in Sociology of Education, Nick Bloom also a co-author) and one called “Selling Students” about corporate partnership programs on college campuses (to appear in a special issue about higher education in Research in the Sociology of Organizations). All of this work examines in various ways the increasing corporatization of higher education. Congrats Dan.
Grad student Natalie Aviles has been awarded a President’s Dissertation Fellowship for 2015-2016. The competition for these fellowships is very steep, and we are pleased that Natalie has been recognized by the university. This year there were 33 nominations at the university level.
Professor Vanesa Ribas has been awarded the 2015-16 Hellman Fellowship. This fellowship is designed to provide early-career funding to promising faculty as they progress toward tenure.
Congratulations to Katie Kenny, who has just accepted a 2-year postdoctoral fellowship at the new Practical Justice Initiative in the Faculty of Arts and Social Science at the University of New South Wales in Sydney!