2020 CSW Student Award Recipients

We are pleased to announce the recipients of the 2019-2020 CSW Student Awards and Fellowships!

CSW is proud to honor the achievements of UCLA graduate and undergraduate students who conduct groundbreaking research and activism around issues related to women and gender. The 2019-2020 recipients will be celebrated in a virtual event in October 2020.

Penny Kanner Dissertation Research Fellowship

Funded by the late Penny Kanner, a longtime CSW Research Affiliate, this Fellowship helps fund an exceptional dissertation research project pertaining to women or gender that uses historical materials and methods.

Jessica Horvath Williams

Jessica Horvath Williams is a PhD candidate in English. She is affiliated with Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies at the University of Minnesota and co-chairs the Critical Disability Studies Collective. She teaches and researches at the crossroads of nineteenth-century US literature and feminist disability studies, with emphasis on questions of women’s writing, domestic labor, and literary form. She is a disability activist in the Twin Cities, educating healthcare professionals on disability, intersectionality, and health equity.

Kali Tambreé

Kali Tambreé is a PhD student in Sociology. Her work largely considers historiographic and archival accounts of living and dying in the Middle Passage of the transatlantic slave trade. She is from Baltimore.




Madina Thiam

Madina Thiam is a PhD candidate in History, working on the social and intellectual histories of the Sahel in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Her dissertation investigates the mobilities and freedom strategies of itinerant Muslim figures from present-day Mali. It draws on archival and oral research conducted in Mali, Senegal, France, England, Ireland, and Jamaica. She also helps coordinate the Bamako-based Projet Archives des Femmes, an archival initiative that preserves endangered documents belonging to Malian women who undertook anti-colonial struggles in the 1950s and women’s rights activism in the decades that followed.


*Due to an available balance in funds, additional awards were given this academic year.

Elizabeth Blackwell, MD, Graduate and Undergraduate Awards

Also funded by Penny Kanner and named for the first woman to receive a medical degree in the United States, the Elizabeth Blackwell, MD, Award recognizes an outstanding research report, thesis, or article related to women and health or women in health-related endeavors.

Jessica Shropshire (Graduate Award Recipient)

Jessica Shropshire is a PhD candidate in Social Psychology. She received a BS in Psychology and a BA in Global Health from Arizona State University. She also received an MA in Social Psychology from UCLA. Even before engaging with someone, people make a number of judgments about them from a brief glance. As such, visual cues, while informative, bias interpersonal judgments about other people. Shropshire’s research investigates the role of visual cues in influencing a host of consequential judgments about individuals who vary along the dimensions of gender and race.

Carrianne Leschak (Graduate Award Recipient)

Carrianne Leschak is a PhD candidate in Social Psychology. She received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology, Sociology, and Criminology from the University of North Carolina Wilmington, and a master’s degree in Psychology from UCLA. Her research aims to understand the bidirectional relationship between social interactions and physical health. Her master’s thesis explored how olfactory dysfunction in females predicts mortality via reduced physical contact with others. Her ongoing research includes investigating links between social support and immune factors in female breast cancer survivors, as well as neural mechanisms of this link.

Aneri Suthar (Undergraduate Award Recipient)

Aneri Suthar is an undergraduate senior studying Human Biology and Society, International Development Studies, and Entrepreneurship. Her current campus involvements include USAC, UC Womxn’s Leadership Conference, Bruin Mental Health Advisory Committee, and Fellowship for International Service and Health (FISH). This summer, you can find her interning with the Profitable Good Group and The Giving Spirit before serving as a California Judicial Fellow next year. Suthar’s research and advocacy focuses on reproductive justice, which she hopes to study further in law school through a dual JD/MPH program.


*Due to an available balance in funds, additional awards were given this academic year.

Jean Stone Dissertation Research Fellowship

Jean Stone cared deeply about the graduate students whose research embodied the promise of the next generation of feminist scholars. The Jean Stone Research Dissertation Fellowship provides support for a doctoral student engaged in research focusing on women and/or gender.

Amy Elizabeth Alterman

Amy Elizabeth Alterman (MPH) is a PhD candidate in Culture and Performance. Working at the nexus of performance studies, gender studies, anthropology, and public health, she applies feminist and performance theory to current sexual and reproductive health problems. Based on two years of ethnographic research, her dissertation analyzes the obstacles, resiliencies, and support networks associated with independent abortion clinics in the United States—spotlighting the Abortion Access Front comedy show as an arts-based public health intervention. Her work has been published in Contraception, The Journal of Adolescent Health, and other publications.

Megan Baker

Megan Baker (Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma) is a PhD candidate in Anthropology and Research Associate for Choctaw Nation Historic Preservation. Her dissertation examines the gendering and racializing work of instituting private property in Choctaw treaty lands and its effects on contemporary Choctaw economic development in Oklahoma. She holds an MA in American Indian Studies from UCLA and a BA in Race and Ethnicity Studies from Columbia University.

Marta Bornstein

Marta Bornstein is a PhD candidate at the Fielding School of Public Health in Community Health Sciences. Within public health, Bornstein is committed to scholarship that embodies the true vision of reproductive rights: helping people achieve their reproductive goals, whatever they may be. Her dissertation explores the interrelatedness and health impacts of a spectrum of reproductive experiences, including both unintended pregnancy and infertility, in Malawi. Prior to UCLA, she worked on issues ranging from HIV/STD prevention to maternal health infrastructure. She earned her MPH from Tulane University and BA from Beloit College.

Hannah Carlan

Hannah Carlan is a PhD candidate in Anthropology. Her work broadly addresses the gendered politics of multilingualism in contemporary India, with particular emphasis on how everyday linguistic practices shape rural development efforts in the Himalayas. Previously, she has conducted research on the linguistic politics of gendered violence in digitally-mediated contexts, and on the relationship between language, class, and joking practices in the South Asian diaspora. Hannah holds an MPhil in Social Anthropology from the University of Cambridge and a BA in Anthropology and Linguistics from New York University.


*Due to an available balance in funds, additional awards were given this academic year.

Paula Stone Legal Research Fellowship

Funded by Jean Stone and named in honor of her daughter, the Paula Stone Legal Research Fellowship supports research that focuses on women and the law with preference given to research on women in the criminal/legal justice system.

Estefania Castañeda Pérez

Estefania Castañeda Pérez is a PhD candidate in Political Science. Her research interests include state violence, discrimination, and gender at the Mexico-US border. She is a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program Fellow and Ford Predoctoral Fellow. Castañeda Pérez’s research projects have been motivated by her experience commuting daily from Tijuana to San Diego for a transborder pursuit of education. Her dissertation examines the impacts of state violence at the Mexico-US border on transborder commuters’ mental health, sense of belonging, and legal consciousness.

Lucía León

Lucía León is a PhD candidate in Chicana/o Studies. She grew up in Orange County, where she began organizing with undocumented youth and their families in the mid-2000s. Her research interests include immigration law, legalization process, immigrant families, undocumented young adults, race/ethnicity, gender, and sexuality. Her dissertation is an intersectional examination of the consequences of immigration law for undocumented young adults navigating the marriage-based legalization process.


*Due to an available balance in funds, additional awards were given this academic year.

Constance Coiner Graduate and Undergraduate Awards

These awards honor the lives of Dr. Constance Coiner, 48, and her daughter, Ana Duarte-Coiner, 12, who perished on TWA flight #800 in June of 1996. Made possible through donations of family and friends, these awards support research on feminist and working-class issues, and honor excellence in teaching and a commitment to teaching as activism.

Jenna Tamimi (Graduate Award Recipient)

Jenna Tamimi is a PhD candidate in Theater and Performance Studies. She received her master’s in Performance Studies from New York University and her bachelor’s in Theater and Feminist Studies from UC Santa Cruz. She will be starting a postdoc at Lewis and Clark College this Fall. Her research works at the intersections of performance studies, gender studies, queer studies, and historiography. Tamimi’s dissertation explores minoritarian subjects’ engagements with the past through different embodied practices.

Samar Saif (Undergraduate Award Recipient)

Samar Saif is a healer-in-progress; community organizer; multi-medium “artivist”; and creator through shapeshifting means, modalities, and mediums; born and based in Los Angeles. Saif is an undergraduate honors student in Sociology and Gender Studies with a minor in LGBT Studies. Saif has worked in prison abolition, QTPOC organizing and programming, sexual violence advocacy, founded multi-media art collectives, and continues to host discussion spaces and workshops surrounding issues such as mental health in communities of color, racial fetishism, Indian fascism, and sharing healing modalities.

Renaissance Award

A former CSW Research Affiliate, Dr. Myrna Hant received her PhD in Higher Education from UCLA. Dr. Hant created and funds the Renaissance Award, which is a scholarship that rewards the rebirth of academic aspirations among women whose college careers were interrupted or delayed by family and/or career obligations and encourages achievement in the pursuit of a bachelor’s degree at UCLA.

Rebecca Redmond

Rebecca Redmond is an undergraduate honors student in Sociology and African American Studies. She returned to UCLA as a non-traditional transfer student after a 12-year absence from academia spent working and raising her three children, Isaiah, KT, and Kingston. She is an Alfrey Blue and Gold Scholar, Bernard Osher Scholar, UCOP Black Staff and Faculty Scholar, and a Graduate Opportunity Fellowship recipient. Following graduation in June, Redmond will pursue a Master of Social Welfare at the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs.


Black Feminism Initiative (BFI) Graduate Fellowships

The CSW Black Feminism Initiative (BFI) has established two fellowships to support intellectual work that centers black feminist frameworks of analysis: The Alisa Bierria Graduate Fellowship in Black Feminist Research and the Mariame Kaba Graduate Fellowship in Black Feminist Research. In the tradition of abolitionist feminist activism and labor, the BFI Graduate Fellowships seek to advance black feminist work on any topic with a focus on scholarship that interrogates historical and ongoing regimes of violence, enclosure, and captivity and offers original insights for conceiving of freedom, redress, abolition, and refusal.

This is the inaugural year of the BFI Fellowships. The 2019-2020 recipients were also announced in a previous post in February.

Bianca Beauchemin

Bianca Beauchemin is a PhD candidate in Gender Studies. She obtained her bachelor’s degree with honors at York University with a Summa Cum Laude distinction. Her dissertation research explores the interplay of the unintelligibility of Black female sexuality and Black feminist possibilities through the spatial-temporal landscape of the Haitian Revolution. Some of her key sites of research interests also include Black diasporic studies, Black queer studies, Black feminist theory, postcolonial literature, feminist geography, queer of color critique, Caribbean history, and histories of slavery.

Jaimie Crumley

Jaimie Crumley is a PhD student in Gender Studies. She earned her Master of Divinity and Master of Sacred Theology degrees at Yale Divinity School, and her Bachelor of Arts degree at Wellesley College. Her work explores the history of the free African American in the nineteenth-century United States through the lens of the Black Christian women who preached, taught, wrote, and lectured in Boston, Philadelphia, New York, Washington, D.C., and England.


Zama Dube

Zama Dube is a PhD student in Cinema and Media Studies. Her research is often preoccupied with the gnawing responsibility of trying to articulate what she has observed as the “precarity of Black creativity.” This is informed by years of experience as a South African radio broadcaster, voice-over artist, and television content researcher and producer. Her research interests explore the contributions of Black women media makers in envisioning decolonial visual representations of Black womanhood, the aestheticization and representation of Africa in the Hollywood imagination, and the liberatory aesthetics of Black cinema.


Ariel Hart

Ariel Hart is a joint MD/PhD student in the Charles R. Drew/UCLA Medical Education Program and UCLA Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP). Prior to starting medical school, Hart received an MPH in Community Oriented Public Health Practice from the University of Washington. They have taught structural racism and public health practice courses, and worked as a child development researcher and anti-racist community organizer. Hart’s research interests lie at the intersection of Black feminist thought, social movements, and medical sociology. Their current project examines historical and modern-day Black birth-workers as creators of Black social life and futurity.

Brittnee Meitzenheimer

Brittnee Meitzenheimer is an MA student in African American Studies. Grounded in Black Feminist Studies, her thesis examines anti-Blackness as a structure that shapes discourses of migration and the precariousness of belonging and home for “UndocuBlack” Students. Through storytelling, this project seeks to grapple with questions about political agency and citizenship, embodiment and ways of knowing, racialization and gendering, deviance and normalcy. She holds a Master of Education from UC Riverside, focusing on Education, Administration, and Policy.

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