Social Sciences recognizes students amid unprecedented times

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“During these uncertain times it is more important than ever to honor and recognize the wonderful student work that is continuing in spite of all the challenges that 2020 has presented,” said Social Sciences Dean Katharye Mitchell. “I’m so proud of these students’ ability to adapt, adjust, and achieve so much in their time at UC Santa Cruz. Their resiliency in the face of a pandemic and other difficulties is just remarkable.” (Photo collage by Pamela Dewey)

Students, faculty, staff, and friends of the Division of Social Sciences have historically gathered at the end of spring quarter to recognize excellence in student scholarship and creativity. Led by Dean Katharyne Mitchell, the annual Student Award Luncheon honors undergraduates and graduate students across the division. This year the event could not be held due to the ongoing coronavirus crisis.

Nevertheless, Mitchell is delighted to announce the recipients of divisional achievement awards and to celebrate the success of students in the Division of Social Sciences at UC Santa Cruz. 

“During these uncertain times it is more important than ever to honor and recognize the wonderful student work that is continuing in spite of all the challenges that 2020 has presented,” said Mitchell. “I’m so proud of these students’ ability to adapt, adjust, and achieve so much in their time at UC Santa Cruz. Their resiliency in the face of a pandemic and other difficulties is just remarkable.” 

“This group of students will have many more successful endeavors as graduates, or when we welcome them back to campus,” she added.

Division of Social Sciences Awards

Gabriel Zimmerman Memorial Scholarship: This scholarship was established to honor Gabriel "Gabe" Zimmerman, the alum who was shot and killed in the 2011 attack on Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. Zimmerman was working as Giffords' community outreach director at a constituent-engagement event he had organized when gunshots rang out; he ran towards Giffords, who was gravely wounded in the assassination attempt. Gabe was killed. The scholarship was established in the weeks after the shooting by UC Santa Cruz graduates Jonathan Klein (Merrill '89, politics) and Alex Clemens (Porter '89, international politics) and has since attracted support from more than 520 donors. It supports undergraduates who are passionate about social issues and committed to social service.

Walsh Family Scholarship: This scholarship was established by Economics Professor Carl Walsh and his wife, Judy Walsh (MS, '90, applied economics), in honor of Carl's parents Eugene and Bessie Walsh. The award is presented to one or more undergraduates within the Division of Social Sciences, based on academic merit and financial need.

Weiss Family Scholarship: The Weiss Family Scholarship was established in 2005 by Timothy and Jean Weiss to support students in Colleges Nine and Ten. It is presented to one or more students who are working directly with faculty who are affiliated with a divisional research center.

Benjamin Quaye Memorial Award: The Benjamin Quaye Memorial Endowment for Social Justice was established in 2016 to honor the memory of UC Santa Cruz undergraduate Benjamin Quaye. Ben had a strong commitment to spreading values of tolerance and social justice, and this scholarship supports students pursuing educational and career goals in these areas

Keeley Coastal Scholars Award: The Keeley Coastal Scholars Award supports underrepresented undergraduates by providing the financial assistance needed to engage in summer research and policy work related to coastal sustainability. Former Assemblyman and Santa Cruz County Treasurer/Tax Collector Fred Keeley is a widely recognized champion of the coastal environment and the author of the Marine Life Management Act.

Milam-McGinty-Kaun Award for Teaching Excellence: Professor Emeritus of Economics David Kaun established this award in 1999 to recognize two talented teaching assistants each year. He was inspired to endow the award and name it after the first recipients, international economics graduate students Garrett Milam and Matt McGinty, who were TA's in Kaun's Intermediate Microeconomic Theory course. Recipients are selected each year based on academic merit, one from Economics and one from another department in the Social Sciences Division. 

Rick Hooper Scholarship for Human Rights in Palestine and Conflict Resolution: The Rick Hooper Scholarship was established to honor the memory of Richard "Rick" M. Hooper, who died in the August 19, 2003, terrorist bombing of the United Nations headquarters in Baghdad. Hooper, a 1985 graduate of UC Santa Cruz, spent many years in the Middle East and became one of the UN's chief experts on the region. Recipients are selected on academic merit and financial need with preference to those interested in one or more of the areas in which Hooper focused his life's work. 

In addition, students in the Division of Social Sciences received the following campuswide Deans' and Chancellor's Awards: Deans’ awards recognize outstanding achievement by undergraduates in each academic division. Each student or team works on a senior research or milestone project under the mentorship of a faculty member. A committee in each division selects ten Deans' Award recipients; of those, up to three in each division may be selected to receive a Chancellor's Award. 

2020 Deans' Undergraduate Award and a Chancellor's Award: 

2020 Deans' Undergraduate Award: