The UCSB Graduate Division and deans across UCSB graduate schools, including the Bren School, have launched an initiative designed to enhance the recruitment of graduate students committed to teaching, research, and mentorship around racial justice.
The Racial Justice Fellowships will provide recipients $8,000 in summer funding for three years on top of a five-year package of full funding. Four fellowships, open to incoming students in any discipline, will be offered each year. All departments may nominate students for this opportunity.
“The Racial Justice Fellowship Program is desperately needed and right on time,” said Walter Boggan, graduate division director of admissions, outreach, and diversity initiatives. “This most important action by the UC Santa Barbara Graduate Division and deans from across all disciplines highlights their support and a true commitment to our future Black, Indigenous and graduate students of color.”
Interim Graduate Dean Leila Rupp worked with fellow deans and campus leaders to build this program to recognize and provide financial support for incoming graduate students committed to racial justice. “Students in a variety of disciplines are engaged in research that explores the historical roots or contemporary experiences of racism; the educational, environmental, health or economic disparities impacting Black, Indigenous and communities of color; cultural, social and political anti-racist resistance; and other ways in which systemic racism and responses to it have shaped and continue to shape human societies,” she said.
Rupp noted that graduate students also work to translate and mobilize research on topics unconnected to racial justice in the interests of marginalized communities. “In addition, some have provided mentorship for underrepresented high school students, and have participated in university or community organizations in the interests of racial justice,” she said. “They have worked in so many ways to demonstrate a commitment to building an inclusive and just campus or community environment.”
The Racial Justice Fellowship Program is a campuswide collaboration supported by the Graduate Division as well as the deans of the Bren School of Environmental Science & Management; the College of Engineering; the Division of Humanities and Fine Arts; the Division of Social Sciences; the Division of Mathematical, Life, and Physical Science; and the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education.
Fellowships for Justice, The UCSB Current