College of Liberal Arts

Gallery of Scholar Achievements

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Post-doctoral | Undergraduate

Cohorts I & II Post-doctoral scholars

Chris Babits:

  • Served as a historical adviser and Assistant Producer for PBS documentary Cured
  • Postdoctoral teaching fellow at Utah State University
  • Taught a section of the History Department's Capstone course and had three student advisees win departmental writing prizes
  • Martin Duberman Visiting Fellowship, New York Public Library
  • Forthcoming book: To Cure a Sinful Nation: A History of Conversion Therapy in the United States (University of Chicago Press)
  • Public History Writings (this is also a link to his personal website)

Micah Bateman:

 T.J. Bolt:

  • Dean's Post-doctoral Scholar in Latin Literature in the Department of Classics at Florida State University
  • Read more about his scholarship here

 Kristin Canfield:

  • Instructional Designer, Apple Inc.
  • Personal website:
  • Lecturer, Engineering Communications at the Cockrell School of Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin 

 Christine Capetola:

  • In Fall 2021, will begin a new position of Postdoctoral Fellow to Assistant Professor of African American Studies at California State University, Fullerton. The first years in the position will be funded by an ACLS fellowship
  • Published "'Gimme a Beat!': Janet Jackson, Hyperaurality, and Affective Feminism" in The Journal of Popular Music Studies (November 2020)
  • Currently finishing up a Visiting Assistant Professor of Communication and Gender & Sexuality Studies position at Tulane University
  • Personal website:
  • Public-facing writing:
  • Spearheaded the virtual project: Synth Sounds Summer 2020 Series, which explored how music can be a space for anti-racism and solidarity building across lines of race, gender, and sexuality. Watch the Houston, San Antonio, Dallas, and Austin summer performances
  • Academic publication:
  • Invited Speaker, Loyola University in New Orleans: “‘We’ll Try to Imagine What Silence Looks Like’: Prince, Femininity, and Vibrationally Navigating the 1980s”

 Joey (Giuseppe) Castellano:

 Paul Edgar:

  • Associate Director of the William P. Clements, Jr. Center for National Security at the University of Texas at Austin
  • Finishing his first book, an international diplomatic history of the Late Bronze Age
  • Public writing has appeared in Foreign Policy, Task & Purpose, and Capital Commentary
  • Read more about his dissertation here

 Lauren Henley:

  • Entering second year on the tenure track at the University of Richmond
  • Published "The Richest Black Girl in America" through Truly*Adventurous
  • Her 2020 article in the Journal of African American History won the Letitia Woods Brown Memorial Article Prize Honorable Mention from the Association of Black Women Historians
  • “Contested Commitment: Policing Black Female Juvenile Delinquency at Efland Home, 1919-1939”
  • Review of Remember Me to Miss Louisa: Hidden Black-White Intimacies in Antebellum America by Sharony Green. Indiana Magazine of History 113 (March 2017): 87-89
  • Read more about her research at her website
  • Assistant Professor of Leadership Studies at the Jepson School of University of Richmond, Virginia. More about her continued work here

 Colin MacCormack:

 Michael Reyes Salas:

 Sarah Ropp:

  • 2021-2022 Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania, conducting research and teaching with both the Mitchell Center for the Study of Democracy and the SNF Paideia Program dedicated to dialogue across difference
  • Partnered with the Texas Book Festival's Reading Rock Stars program to write literacy curriculum for pre-K through 5th grade. Also partnered with Reading Rock Stars to have my intermediate Spanish students translate picture books into Spanish so that they could be used in bilingual and monolingual Spanish classrooms and literacy programs in Austin
  • Partnered with Austin Bat Caves to provide weekly instructional support in writing to bilingual fourth-grade students at Pecan Springs Elementary. Currently working with Austin Bat Caves to provide college essay coaching for first-generation college students in the Austin Independent School District
  • Partnered with Grassroots Leadership to advocate for immigration justice and the closing of the T. Don Hutto women's detention center. Prior to Covid, Sarah visited with women currently in detentione translated letters written by women whose children were separated from them at the border from Spanish to English and was invited to testify as a witness regarding labor rights abuses in the ICE on Trial tribunal (link here) held May 5, 2018, in which formerly detained women delivered testimony and publicly condemned ICE officials for human rights abuses. Here is a link to an article (in Spanish) for which Sarah was interviewed
  • Nominated for 2020 David D. Anderson Award for Outstanding Essay in Midwestern Literary Studies for her article "Troubling Survivorism in The Bluest Eye"
  • Serves as Program Coordinator for the Difficult Dialogues program through the Humanities Institute
  • Read more about her public scholarship, advocacy, and extensive teaching experience in the U.S. and abroad at her website

Ricardo Velasco Trujillo:

  • Mellon Just Futures Minnesota Transform Initiative: Post-Doctoral Fellow, Institute for Advanced Study, University of Minnesota Twin Cities. 
  • Cultural Ecologies of Memory project
  • Documentary project After the Crossfire (2014) and ongoing work with grassroots cultural organizations in Colombia
  • Coordinator, Rapoport Center’s Graduate Student Affiliates Group (2016-Present)
  • Berta Cáceres Human Rights Fellowship, Summer 2018
  • Charles W. Hackett Memorial Award for extraordinary achievements in Latin American studies, Pan-American Round Table, 2019
  • LLILAS BENSON Humanities Intensive Learning and Teaching Summer Institute Scholarship, 2020 and 2018
  • Digital Humanities Summer Institute Scholarship, University of Victoria, 2020

 Amy Vidor:

  • Amy is an Education Content Developer for MELE Associates. As a contractor for the National Nuclear Security Administration’s Office of Program Management, she is responsible for the Education and Awareness Initiative. She works with subject matter experts to foster knowledge transfer, improve decision-making through training, and promote programmatic objectives and plans. She also supports dialogue between internal and external (e.g. Congress and the media) stakeholders.
  • Cofounder, writer, producer for Archival Fever podcast
  • Contributing Editor for Thinking in Public: Public Scholarship at the University of Texas at Austin and The Humanities Media Project
  • Personal website (direct link to public writing & scholarship here)


Cohorts I, II, & III Undergraduate scholars

Irene Ameena:

  • College of Liberal Arts Dean's Distinguished Graduate 2021

Cali Castellanos:

  • Established a collaborative partnership with RAICES (Refugee and Immigrant Center for Educational and Legal Services), conducting hours of interviews with RAICES lawyers in Texas, which culminated in her honors thesis
  • Working with Girasol, a School of Social Work program that facilitates community dialogues around immigration advocacy. She is part of their community engagement planning board and helps facilitate monthly events
  • Read more about her project narrative

 Oscar Corpus:

  • Inducted into the Friar Society for his work in making campus performance venues more accessible to the Latinx community
  • Intake specialist for the Texas Civil Rights Project
  • Policy intern for Texas state senator Judith Zaffirini
  • Working on public website showcasing his research on college students’ experience in self-esteem and positive identity formation with Latinx studies courses

 Zaria El-Fil:

  • Longhorn Research Week Award - “Audience Choice”
  • Gordon-White exhibit, dramaturgy work
  • Watch her engaged scholarship video here

 Apurva Gunturu:

  • Selected to be the Director of Community Engagement for the Asian Desi Pacific Islander American Collective (ADPAC), through UT's Multicultural Engagement Center
  • Community partnership with Asian Family Support Services of Austin, working together to raise awareness and financial support for survivors of domestic violence
  • Currently planning a series of workshops around social justice and religious identity
  • Current work builds on her extensive experience as a research assistant for the UT Department of History, the Cognitive Neuroscience Lab, and Project SEED, a UT-based project that studies the social, emotional, and educational outcomes of Mexican children who translate for parents who do not speak English 

 Jacob Hood:

  • Completed honors thesis, “Bodies in the Circuit: Race and Police Body-Worn Cameras,” involved significant community-engaged research components
  • Conducted IRB-approved interviews with Black Austin residents about their perceptions of police technology
  • Pursued archival research at the Austin History Center
  • Published academic article, “Making the Body Electric: The Politics of Body-Worn Cameras and Facial Recognition in the United States,” in peer-reviewed journal Surveillance & Society in 2020
  • Adapting material from his thesis into a multimedia digital exhibit on the history of policing in Austin
  • Read his Capstone narrative here
  • Doctoral candidate in Sociology at New York University

Elizabeth Le:

  • Rapoport-King Thesis Award, 2020
  • Elizabeth will begin a Ph.D. in Information Sciences at UT Austin's iSchool in fall 2021

 Max McCready:

  • Researched how Texas-based food banks procure, preserve, and distribute fresh produce
  • Conducted extensive interviews with professionals across the country, including food bank directors, community outreach coordinators, and faculty studying food security issues
  • Capstone narrative can be found here
  • Exploring the possibility of creating an app that would allow individuals, community groups, and businesses to pledge and match donations to social justice organizations

 Ann Morris:

  • Co-hosts and edits A Familiar Place, a podcast which aims to destigmatize mental health issues on campus by sharing first-person stories told by UT students
  • Developed a partnership with the Central Texas branch of NAMI; the National Alliance on Mental Illness, using her skills in data visualization, design, and project management to create new resources for NAMI and to make the organization’s existing resources more user-friendly for the public

 Jarie Nabors:

  • Published Medium article
  • Clements Center for National Security Fellow
  • Ambassador for the Terry Foundation, a scholarship program that encourages community engagement
  • Established a partnership with the national organization WCAPS (Women of Color Advancing Peace and Security), which led to her organizing a symposium at UT on diverse perspectives in national security, (unfortunately cancelled by Covid)
  • Actively pursued research for her Capstone, a museum exhibit exploring the stories of “Occupation children” (Afro-German children born to white German women and Black Allied soldiers during WWII), with the goal to create instructional materials that better reflect the values of the affected community and that introduce students to the ethical challenges that arise in writing about traumatic histories

 Donatus Nnani:

  • College of Liberal Arts Dean’s Distinguished Graduate 2021
  • University Honors, The University of Texas at Austin 2020
  • Sylvia S. Miller Scholarship, The University of Texas at Austin 2020
  • Non-Traditional Scholarship, The University of Texas at Austin 2020
  • Religious Studies Honors Program The University of Texas at Austin 2020-21
  • Ford Fellowship Honorable Mention 2021
  • Published "Religion and Social Inequality: A Comparative Study of Rural Communities In Texas Hill Country"
  • In Fall 2021, Donatus will start a doctoral program in Religious Studies at the University of Texas at Austin, where he will study the relationship between religion and the earliest forms of American government

Thomaia Pamplin:

  • Returned as Guest Speaker and mentor for Spring 2021 Mellon ESI Seminar
  • Graduate student at the University of Texas MD Anderson/UTHealth Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
  • Speaker, Racial Health Disparities and Public History Lecture, University of Houston Center for Public History
  • Author, "The Odds are Stacked Against Us: Oral Histories of Black Healthcare in the U.S.", Not Even Past
  • Liberal Art Dean's Research Reception, selected undergraduate research poster "Too Often Unheard: The Narratives and Medical Experiences of Misdiagnosed Black Women"

Cathy Preciado:

  • Accepted to two panels at the Modern Language Association’s 2021 convention in Toronto: a roundtable on anti-racist pedagogies roundtable and a panel entitled “Comics and Illness: Mediating Trauma through Image-Textual Encounters”
  • Won inaugural undergraduate research award from the David Foster Wallace Society for her work on Infinite Jest and online fan cultures
  • Attended the Fan Studies Network of North America’s annual conference, where she had the opportunity to attend workshops and network with faculty in her field
  • Selected as Vice President of Membership for Texas Orange Jackets, where much of her work has focused on improving the organization's practices around equity and inclusion 
  • Working on a research project called “Undocumenting Superman,” which reimagines the quintessential American cultural icon as an undocumented immigrant
  • Read Cathy’s ESI narrative here

Scott J. Spivey Provencio:

  • For his thesis, conducted an anthropological study of Latinx immigrant experiences with chronic illness in the U.S. healthcare system
  • Dean's Distinguished Graduate Award from the College of Liberal Arts
  • Continued to complete M. Phil from University of Cambridge
  • Currently at Dell Medical School, featured for his vision of breaking down walls in health care

Emma Robinson:

  • Thesis explored how public housing design influences and shapes the behavior of residents
  • Worked on a comparative analysis of how public housing is designed, perceived, and resourced in European and American countries
  • Sought connections with Austin- and Houston-based community groups that work on public housing and urban planning issues
  • Involved in collaborative partnership with Community Powered Workshop, a nonprofit that seeks to amplify the voices of marginalized communities in Austin by connecting community members with city planners and policymakers

Estefania Rodriguez:

  • College of Liberal Arts Dean's Distinguished Graduate 2021
  • Co-wrote a paper with Dr. Samantha Shorey titled "Automating the Essential Work of Care: Media Reporting on Automation and Waste Workers Before and During the Covid-19 Pandemic" which was selected for the 71st Annual International Communication Association Conference
  • Created a video narrative of six students' experiences applying for and transitioning to college for a high school college application essay workshop; guided Austin ISD students through the workshop and writing their essays
  • Partnered with Generation Citizen, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing action civics education to underserved students, to research their relationship with Elgin ISD and students' experiences as they undergo the advocacy process
  • Researched the intersections between abolition and environmental justice; created a zine, opinion article, and educational resources on her findings

Jeffery Rose:

  • Completed an honors thesis entitled "Through this White Madness: Horror, Whiteness, and Mad Scapegoating,” for which he was awarded the prestigious Rapoport-King Thesis Scholarship
  • Creating a Wikipedia-style website called DisConnect, which explores disability representation in popular fiction, film, and television
  • Worked closely with faculty and students in UT’s disABILITY Advocacy Student Coalition

Ana Rosa Sánchez:

  • Researched Puerto Rican LGBTQ+ writers
  • Met with scholars and independent booksellers in Puerto Rico, and visited queer cultural spaces that facilitated more grassroots forms of publishing and distributing literary works
  • Compiled resources, citations, and abstracts that they plan to publish on an open-access website
  • Read Ana’s project narrative here 

Christine Vo:

  • Completed graphic novel, Viola, a semi-autobiographical story about a protagonist who switches between different identities at home, work, school, and in different social settings
  • Researched understanding imposter syndrome and belief in one’s intellectual capabilities among minority students, using philosophical frameworks to analyze how first-generation college students navigate different social and academic environments
  • Capstone project narrative is available here