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Ethnic Minority Dissertation Fellowship

Each academic year the Provost’s Office, under the leadership of the Office of Diversity Engagement and Community Outreach, invites scholars from underrepresented ethnic minorities to apply for the USF Ethnic Minority Dissertation Fellowship. In this program, scholars are expected to complete their dissertation on a diversity related research topic, while teaching one course per semester in the school where they are placed. Through this program, promising scholars from diverse backgrounds become familiar with the responsibilities of a USF faculty member.  

History of The Program

The Ethnic Minority Dissertation Fellowship began in 1993 with major grant funding from the James Irvine Foundation. Dr. Gerardo Marin, currently Vice Provost of Academic Affairs, was the principal architect of this initial fellowship program at USF. Funding from the Irvine grant ended in 2010. Since that time, the Provost's Office has funded this fellowship due to its highly successful record of recruiting and retaining talented ethnic minority scholars from across the country.

This academic year marks the 20th anniversary of the Ethnic Minority Dissertation Fellowship (EMDF) program at USF, previously called the Irvine Fellows. Thanks to the support of the Provost’s Office and the Dean’s Office in the College of Arts and Sciences, this year USF has welcomed two EMDF scholars onto our faculty: Marian Liu and James Zarsadiaz. 

Many of USF’s celebrated professors began their careers at the university through this fellowship, and the university currently has 13 faculty members that are Irvine Fellows. In the words of Professor Kevin Chun, (Fellow '95-96): “This program was essential because it contributed to a critical mass of ethnic minority faculty on campus, which helped to reshape and strengthen USF's curriculum and intellectual life. Many of the Fellows eventually became the first members of their ethnic groups to become full-time, tenured professors in their academic departments. Fellows brought innovative research programs to USF and developed pioneering academic courses that directly speak to and serve San Francisco's diverse communities, thus raising USF's profile both locally and nationally. This fellowship continues to represent the heart and soul of USF's mission to distinguish itself as a diverse, socially responsible learning community of high quality scholarship and academic rigor sustained by a faith that does justice."

Fellows

Year Name
2004-2005 Victor Rios
                  Evelyn I. Rodriguez
  Shawan Worsely
2003-2004 Gena Chandler
2002-2003 Stephanie Sears
1999-2000 Ange-Marie Hancock
  Rachel Gortarez Salas
1998-1999 Eileen Fung
  Rod Hernandez
  David Kim
  Julio Moreno
1997-1998 Rebecca Chiyoko King-O'Riain
1995-1996 Kevin Chun
1994-1995 Eduardo Mendieta
1993-1994 Paul Lopez

2014 − 2015 Fellows: Jaclynn Hawkins, Nicole Gonzales Howell, & Rigoberto Marquez

Jaclynn HawkinsJaclynn Hawkins


Fellowship Placement: Public Health Program, School of Nursing & Health Professions

 
  
  

Nicole Gonzales HowellNicole Gonzales Howell


Fellowship Placement: Rhetoric and Composition, College of Arts and Sciences

 
 
 
 
 
Rigoberto MarquezRigoberto Marquez


Fellowship Placement: Leadership Studies & International and Multicultural Education, School of Education

 
 

2013 − 2014 Fellows: Marian Liu & James Zarsadiaz

Marian LiuMarian Liu

Adjunct Professor, Pyschology Department
College of Arts and Sciences, University of San Francisco
 

Marian Liu - Curriculum Vitae
Marian Liu - Dissertation Summary

Fellowship Placement: Psychology, College of Arts and Sciences

Marian Liu - Faculty Profile

The Ethnic Minority Dissertation Fellowship is essential to my career development. My Ph.D. program values research on its applied value in changing the world, and USF's mission on social justice resonates well with my research in social issues faced by older adults. The fellowship not only provided support for me to complete my dissertation on elder financial exploitation, it also allowed me to function as a university faculty member. I taught courses on elder mistreatment, and directed my lab on projects related to elder abuse. Most importantly, intellectual and personal relationships built with students and colleagues are invaluable. The opportunity to emerge oneself in a scholarly community that cherishes diversity is not easy to obtain. USF's Ethnic Minority Dissertation Fellowship encourages young scholars of color to make the world a better place, and I am a proud member of this community.

 

zarsadiaz_jamesJames Zarsadiaz

Assistant Professor, History
College of Arts and Sciences, University of San Francisco
 

Fellowship Placement: History, College of Arts and Sciences

James Zarsadiaz - Faculty Profile

The Ethnic Minority Dissertation Fellowship is a valuable and necessary program at the University of San Francisco. It provides prime professionalization opportunities for scholars of color who remain underrepresented in the American professoriate. Fellows gain additional teaching experience, cultivate relationships with respected scholars at the university and in the Bay Area, and are allotted time and funding to finish their dissertation. Students, staff, faculty, and community members benefit from this fellowship committed to inclusivity.

2012 - 2013 Fellow: Ruth Kim

/uploadedImages/Destinations/Offices_and_Services/Provost/Diversity/images/ruth kim_web.jpgRuth Kim

Ruth Kim - Curriculum Vitae
Ruth Kim - Dissertation Summary

Fellowship Placement: International and Multicultural Education, School of Education


 
 

 

 2011 - 2012 Fellow: Valerie Francisco

/uploadedImages/Destinations/Offices_and_Services/Provost/Diversity/images/Valerie Francisco_web.jpgValerie Francisco

Assistant Professor, Sociology
College of Arts and Sciences, University of Portland

Fellowship Placement: Sociology, College of Arts and Sciences

"The Ethnic Minority Dissertation Fellowship was a valuable experience that allowed me to have a supported and sustained amount of time to concentrate on finishing my dissertation. But the lasting relationships I was able to build with students, faculty, staff, administrators and the larger San Francisco community is what I value the most. I felt that USF appreciated my global scholarship, commitment to teaching and community engagement and I felt encouraged to do all of those things while I was a fellow. I believe that USF is a better institution with the presence of this program as it acknowledges the obstacles that people of color face in today's academe and it provides generative space and time for scholars of color to produce their important contributions to the world while being part of an amazing community."

2008 − 2009 Fellows: Decoteau Irby, & Quayshawn Spencer

Decoteau Irby

Assistant Professor, Department of Administrative Leadership
School of Education, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee

/uploadedImages/Destinations/Offices_and_Services/Provost/Diversity/images/quayshawn.jpgQuayshawn Spencer

Assistant Professor, Philosophy
College of Arts and Sciences, University of San Francisco

Fellowship Placement: Philosophy, College of Arts and Sciences

Quayshawn Spencer - Faculty Profile

Professor Spencer's Website

"USF's Ethnic Minority Dissertation Fellowship was integral to my development as a young scholar. It gave me my first job teaching a college course. The fellowship also helped me push my dissertation writing forward by structuring my time better (due to teaching demands) and giving me access to academics who were specialists in my area of research. Specifically, my dissertation was in the philosophy of race, and USF has more philosophers of race than any other university on the West coast. The fellowship also introduced me to the benefits and responsibilities of an academic, and solidified my desire to become a college professor. This fellowship is valuable to USF because there is no better way to achieve faculty diversity than to actively seek it out through an institutionalized recruitment program like USF's Ethnic Minority Dissertation Fellowship."

2007 - 2008 Fellow: Violet Cheung, Kouslaa Kessler-Mata, & Wanjiru Kamau-Rutenberg

/uploadedImages/Destinations/Offices_and_Services/Provost/Diversity/images/violet cheung.jpgViolet Cheung

Assistant Professor, Psychology
College of Arts and Sciences, University of San Francisco

Fellowship Placement: Psychology, College of Arts and Sciences

Violet Cheung - Faculty Profile

"The year that I spent in the dissertation scholar program prompted a significant shift in my professional life. Not only did I complete the transition from student to teacher, but I also realized that pure research could be wielded to solve real world problems. Though my formal academic training took place at a research university where applied research is seen as less prestigious than basic research, nevertheless, USF’s values of social justice, equality and common good inspired an interest in applying emotion theories to study inter-group aggression. My research on the public’s support for war in the aftermath of 9/11 flourished during my tenure as a dissertation scholar. In addition, my current research on the emotional underpinnings of cyber policies is a continuation of this work, of using theory to address real world problems. To me, the dissertation scholarship is a chance for USF to showcase its thriving academic community and for candidates to immerse themselves in a unique and stimulating environment.

kessler-mata_kouslaaKouslaa Kessler-Mata

Assistant Professor, Politics
College of Arts & Sciences, University of San Francisco

Kouslaa Kessler-Mata - Faculty Profile

 

 

/uploadedImages/Destinations/Offices_and_Services/Provost/Diversity/images/Wanjiru.jpgWanjiru Kamau-Rutenberg

Assistant Professor, African Studies
College of Arts & Sciences, University of San Francisco

Wanjiru Kamau-Rutenberg - Faculty Profile

Professor Kamau-Rutenberg serves as the Director of Akili Dada

"The Ethnic Minority Dissertation Fellow made it possible for me to finish my dissertation and become an academic. USF believed in me and my abilities and provided me with all I needed to succeed."

2006 - 2007 Fellow: Melissa Moreno

Melissa Moreno

Professor, Ethnic Studies
Social Sciences, Woodland Community College 

Fellowship Placement: International & Multicultural Education, School of Education

Co-Author of Speaking from the Heart: Herstories of Chicana, Latina, and Amerindian Women

 

2005 − 2006 Fellow: Jorge Aquino & Christina Grijalva

aquino_jorgeJorge Aquino

Assistant Professor, Latin American Studies
Assistant Professor Theology and Religious Studies

College of Arts and Sciences, University of San Francisco

Jorge Aquino - Faculty Profile

 

Christina Grijalva


 2004 - 2005 Fellow: Victor M. Rios, Evelyn I. Rodriguez, & Shawan Worsely

Victor RiosVictor M. Rios

Associate Professor, Sociology

College of Letters and Science, University of California, Santa Barbara

Fellowship Placement: Sociology, College of Arts and Sciences

Dr. Victor Rios website and Punished: Policing the Lives of Black and Latino Boys 

"The EMDF launched my career as a Sociologist. It helped me create a solid dissertation project that was then turned into a book manuscript that has received much acclaim. At USF I learned how to be a great undergraduate instructor and I carry that as I continue on with that tradition at a larger university today" 

rodriquez_evelynEvelyn I. Rodriguez

Associate Professor, Sociology
College of Arts and Sciences, University of San Francisco

Fellowship Placement: Sociology

Evelyn I. Rodriguez - Faculty Profile

Chair of USF Critical Diversity Studies & Author of Celebrating Debutantes and Quinceañeras: Coming of Age in American Ethnic Communities

"I think that the most important thing that being an Irvine Fellow enabled me to do was benefit from the wise and generous mentorship of senior faculty of color who truly understood my commitment (and the challenges) to developing research, teaching, and service that not only enriched my academic field but that contributed to empowering a next generation of informed and compassionate scholar-citizens in and out of the university. I am confident that the experience it gave me in the classroom and building relationships with my department helped make me a more qualified and competitive candidate for the nationally-posted position I was eventually hired for (at usf) while i was still abroad. While I've been at USF, I have personally witnessed the concrete ways the Irvine Fellowship has enriched our campus community. Our Irvines have been USF's workhorses: they helped establish African American Studies and Chican@/Latin@ Studies; they are serving as program directors, student and organization advisors, and in the Dean's office; and they are creating and maintaining vital partnerships between USF and community groups across San Francisco and beyond. The work of our Irvines has and continues to insure that USF walks the walk--and doesn't just talk the talk--when it comes to real diversity, and real community connections.
Shawan Worsely


 

 

2002 - 2003 Fellow: Stephanie Sears

Professor Stephanie SearsStephanie Sears

Director of African American Studies, University of San Francisco
Director of Esther Madriz Diversity Scholars Living Learning Community

Fellowship Placement: Sociology

Stephanie Sears - Faculty Profile

Author of Imagining Black Womanhood (SUNY, 2010)

 
 
 

Rachel Gortarez Salas

Assistant Professor, Literacy


1998 − 1999 Fellows: Eileen Fung, Rod Hernandez, David Kim, & Julio Moreno

fung_eileenEileen Fung

Associate Dean, College of Arts and Sciences
Academic Director, Master of Fine Arts in Writing Program
College of Arts and Sciences, University of San Francisco


Eileen Fung - Faculty Profile 

 

kim_davidDavid Kim

Associate Professor, Philosophy 
College of Arts and Sciences, University of San Francisco

Fellowship Placement: Philosophy, College of Arts and Sciences

David Kim - Faculty Profile

 

moreno_julioJulio Moreno

Associate Professor, History

College of Arts and Sciences, University of San Francisco

Julio Moreno - Faculty Profile

 

 

1997 − 1998 Fellow: Rebecca Chiyoko King-O'Riain

Dr. Rebecca Chiyoko King-O'RiainDr. Rebecca Chiyoko King-O'Riain

Senior Lecturer, Sociology
Social Sciences, National University of Ireland, Maynooth

Fellowship Placement: Sociology, College of Arts and Sciences

"The Irvine Scholarship (now the Ethnic Minority Dissertation Fellowship) changed my life and launched my international career as a scholar. When I arrived at USF from UC Berkeley, I was one of the first Irvine Scholars and was fortunate to arrive just after Dr. Kevin Chun (Psychology) and just prior to Dr. Eileen Fung (English). Together, we formed a critical mass of scholars in Asian American Studies and this allowed us to formulate new and diversify existing curricula at USF. Intellectually, the rich, engaging, and personable community at USF (I now realize, a fine and rare combination!), provided me with the support to complete my PhD and write my first book 'Pure Beauty: Judging Race in Japanese American Beauty Pageants.' When I left USF, to pursue a career in Europe, I was well prepared to meet what I see as the global challenge of social justice both in San Francisco and the world at large. All of this, would not have been possible without the scholarship at USF."

1995 − 1996 Fellow: Kevin Chun

Kevin ChunKevin Chun

Professor, Psychology
College of Arts and Sciences, University of San Francisco

 

Kevin Chun - Faculty Profile

“This program was essential because it contributed to a critical mass of ethnic minority faculty on campus, which helped to reshape and strengthen USF's curriculum and intellectual life. Many of the Fellows eventually became the first members of their ethnic groups to become full-time, tenured professors in their academic departments. Fellows brought innovative research programs to USF and developed pioneering academic courses that directly speak to and serve San Francisco's diverse communities, thus raising USF's profile both locally and nationally. This fellowship continues to represent the heart and soul of USF's mission to distinguish itself as a diverse, socially responsible learning community of high quality scholarship and academic rigor sustained by a faith that does justice."

1994 − 1995 Fellow: Eduardo Mendieta

Eduardo Mendieta

Professor, Philosophy
Department of Philosophy, Stony Brook University

 

1993 − 1994 Fellow: Paul Lopez

Paul Lopez