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University of California Fellowships promote research in educational equity and diversity

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LOS ANGELES (October 23, 2013) —Researchers from UC Berkeley, UC Davis, UC Irvine, UC Los Angeles, UC San Diego and UC Santa Cruz received Fellowships and a Grant for their work in addressing educational inequalities in California’s public school system.

UC/ACCORD All Campus Consortium on Research for Diversity awarded Dissertation Fellowships to 11 doctoral candidates from the seven aforementioned University of California campuses. In addition, one Faculty Seed Grant was awarded to an Assistant Professor from UC Irvine beginning a research project on the educational pathways and experiences of Latina Medical Doctors.

Since 2001, UC/ACCORD has awarded 148 Fellowships and Grants to doctoral and postdoctoral students and UC faculty. This year’s fellows will discuss their work at the 13th annual UC/ACCORD conference held in Lake Arrowhead, Calif., Nov. 8-10. The Fellows join a growing network of academics, researchers and education experts interested in replacing prevailing patterns of schooling inequality and disparities in access to higher education with equitable conditions and outcomes for children from all sectors of the state. 

The 2013 Dissertation Fellowships were awarded to the following doctoral candidates:

Nancy Acevedo-Gil is a doctoral candidate in Social Science and Comparative Education at UCLA’s Graduate School of Education & Information Studies.  Her research interests include college access, choice, and enrollment for underrepresented and low-income students.  Acevedo-Gil’s current research identifies effective strategies that high school leaders can implement in under-resourced schools to build a college culture and increase college-readiness.
Dissertation: Building a College Culture in an Under-Resourced High School: Informing Latina/o College Choices and Enrollments

Lisceth Brazil-Cruz is a doctoral candidate with an emphasis in School Organization and Educational Policy at UC Davis’ School of Education. Her research interests include educational issues affecting disenfranchised, underserved and vulnerable student populations. Her dissertation work is focused on understanding parental practices of Latino first generation college students as they transition from high school to college.
Dissertation: From High School to College: Parental Practices of Latino First-Generation College Students

Jennifer Collett is a doctoral candidate in the Language, Literacy, and Culture program at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Education. Her research interests include examining the process of language development and identity construction, as well as issues of equity and race in the public schools. Collett’s dissertation focuses on English language learners in elementary school and the social identities they construct through the process of language learning.
Dissertation: Negotiating an Identity to Achieve in an English Dominant School System: Investigating the Academic Lives of Young Bilingual Learners

Kathryn Hayes is a doctoral candidate with an emphasis in School Organization and Educational Policy at UC Davis’ School of Education. Her work is broadly about the conditions salient to student critical engagement with science, including systemic supports necessary for democratic participation.   Within this frame, she is interested in the organizational and socio-cultural factors which constrain or support critical engagement with science and how assessment research in various fields can support best practice without narrowing goals to those which can be measured. 
Dissertation: Equity in Elementary Science Education: A Study of Institutional Factors

Rafael Hernández is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Counseling, Clinical, and School Psychology at UC Santa Barbara’s The Gevirtz Graduate School of Education. His dissertation focuses on ways to improve college persistence and mental health by examining how Latina/o students cope with perceived racial discrimination in their university environment.
Dissertation: Responding to Perceived Racial Microaggressions: Impacts on Latina/o Mental Health and College Persistence Attitudes

Yvonne Kwan is a doctoral candidate in sociology at UC Santa Cruz. Using mixed methods and a critical understanding of transgenerational transmission of trauma, Kwan’s dissertation strives to identify both challenges and opportunities for Cambodian students at institutions of higher education and within communities. She believes there must be fundamental rethinking of theories of trauma as a handicap, especially in the contexts of higher education.
Dissertation: Encountering Memory and Affect: Transgenerational Transmission of Trauma in 1.5 and Second Generation Cambodian American Refugees

Eduardo Lara is a doctoral candidate in Social Sciences and Comparative Education division at UCLA’s Graduate School of Education and Information Studies, with a specialization in Race and Ethnic Studies. His research interests include the educational experiences of Latino males, the militarization of urban high schools, and the identity development of gay Latinos in schools.  Lara’s dissertation examines the educational experiences of Latino military veterans, including issues of college access and masculinity for this growing population of students.
Dissertation: Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell ‘Em About College: Brown Masculinity Portraitures on the Educational Experiences of Latino Military Veterans 

Kelly Nielsen is a doctoral candidate in Sociology at UC San Diego. His research investigates the relationship between place, aspirations, and higher education institutions.  Nielsen’s dissertation focuses on how over time low-income women in community college forge aspirations and pursue mobility through higher education.
Dissertation: Aspiring in Place: Low-Income Women and the Pursuit of Higher Education in the Outer City

Adriana Ruiz Alvarado is a doctoral candidate in Higher Education and Organizational Change at UCLA’s Graduation School of Education & Information Studies. Her research examines student enrollment and mobility patterns, campus climate and intergroup relations, and college contexts that impact the persistence of underrepresented students.
Dissertation: Latina/o College Student Enrollment Mobility: Who Moves? And in What Ways?

Joanna Wong is a doctoral candidate in Language, Literacy, and Culture at UC Davis’ School of Education, where she is also pursuing designated emphases in Second Language Acquisition and Writing, Rhetoric, and Composition Studies. Her research interests include elementary literacy education for culturally and linguistically diverse students, elementary second language writing, teacher development, and language policy.  Wong’s dissertation examines elementary Spanish-English bilingual students’ writing practices to better understand how they experience and understand their academic writing development.
Dissertation: What to Write? Elementary Bilingual Students Writing in a Second Language

Chenoa S. Woods is a doctoral candidate in Education Policy and Social Context at UC Irvine’s School of Education. Her research examines how institutional sources of college knowledge influence college preparation and attendance for underrepresented students. Woods’s dissertation examines students’ college choice process within classroom, program, and school contexts.
Dissertation: Patches in the Leaky Pipeline: The Influences of Classrooms, Programs, and Schools on Students’ College Preparation and Choice

The 2013-2014 Faculty Seed Grant was awarded to Glenda M. Flores, currently an Assistant Professor of Chicano/Latino Studies (w/courtesy Sociology) at UC Irvine. Her grant project is entitled Latina Doctors in Southern California: Critical Transitions in College and the Workforce. She pursues research on Latina professionals, the intersection of race, gender and class, middle-class minorities, education and the workplace. In her work she explores the mobility pathways of the children of Latino immigrants and their workplace experiences in white-collar occupations.

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