Monthly Program, May 2014

Thirty-seven doctoral candidates from a broad range of disciplines at the University of Texas at Austin submitted applications for the Austin Branch of AAUW (American Association of University Women) fellowships for the coming academic year. The strength of their applications made the choice difficult. After careful consideration, the scholarship committee selected the following six women to receive awards of $2,500 each.

  • Roanne Kantor studies Comparative Literature (English, Spanish, Hindi, Urdu). Her dissertation “Cartographies of Engagement” compares the parallel journeys and partial solidarities of Latin American and South Asian authors in the twentieth century.
  • JuHee Lee is a citizen of South Korea majoring in Curriculum and Instruction (Foreign Language Education Program), whose dissertation is: “Exploring Interdependence of Second Language Skills: Effects of Extensive Reading and Extensive Writing on Language Development for Adolescent English Learners.”
  • Valerie Martinez’s interest in Twentieth Century U.S. History/Mexican American studies led to her dissertation “The Benito Juarez Squadron: An Evaluation of Pan Americanism and Latina Servicewomen during World War II.”
  • Jennifer Scott worked in Peru as a research assistant for a local NGO. This experience combined with her current job with the Workers’ Defense Project and previous work with poor women and families led to her dissertation “Working on the Margins: Latino Immigrants, Citizenship, and Low Wage Labor in Texas.”
  • Jennifer Shapland is a doctoral candidate in English contemporary literature of place and environment which is directly related to her dissertation topic “Narrative Salvage: Repurposing Material, Place and Environment in Contemporary Literature.”
  • Esther Sullivan is a doctoral candidate in Sociology with special interests in poverty, inequality and housing. Her dissertation is titled: “Halfway Homeowners: A Geospatial and Ethnographic Analysis of Forced Relocation in Mobile Home Parks.”

These six women were recognized at the AAUW meeting on May 17, which also included memorials for 4 recently deceased members and installation of branch officers for 2014-15.

An endowment fund at the University of Texas was established with the first contribution of $1,100 in 1934. The Austin Branch has awarded fellowships yearly since 1985 to women doctoral candidates at The University of Texas at Austin. Mildred Englert is the Austin Branch member who finished the endowment, and the Branch contact is the UT Fellowship Chair. Esther Sullivan is also the lucky recipient of a National AAUW Fellowship.  AAUW annually provides more than $4 million in fellowships and grants to support women’s education in the United States and around the world.