Student Achievement

Constance Holden Wins Conference Paper Prize

Constance Holden HeadshotHistory conferences are no doubt different these days, but even in virtual and online spaces, they still honor excellent historical scholarship. And that’s certainly the case with UConn History PhD student Constance Holden.

Constance’s paper, “Black Visibility and Whitened Modernity: Constructing Argentine Nationalism in Caras y Caretas, 1898-1910,” for Virginia Tech’s Innovative Perspectives in History Graduate Research Conference won the Brian Bertoti Award for Outstanding Historical Scholarship.

Well done, Constance, and congratulations on this incredible honor! Keep up the great work and making UConn History proud.

UConn History Faculty and Student Win Humanities Institute Fellowships

It’s that time again: the announcement of the University of Connecticut’s Humanities Institute (UCHI) Fellows.

Once again, UConn History is well represented. Please join us in congratulating Professor Micki McElya, Associate Professor Fiona Vernal, and PhD candidate Erik Freeman for receiving 2021-2022 UCHI Fellowships. As a UCHI Fellow, Professor McElya will work on the project, “No More Miss America! How Protesting the 1968 Pageant Changed a Nation.” For Professor Vernal, her UCHI Fellowship means working on “Hartford Bound: Mobility, Race, and Identity in the Post-World War II Era (1940-2020).” And as a Draper Dissertation Fellow, Freeman will work towards the completion of his doctoral dissertation, “The Mormon International: Communitarian Politics and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, 1830-1890.”

Well done, folks, and we look forward to seeing and hearing more about these exciting projects.

UConn PhD Alum Nathan Braccio Accepts Postdoctoral Fellowship

Nathan and his advisor, Prof. Nancy Shoemaker

Congratulations are in order to UConn PhD alum Nathan Braccio (2020) for receiving and accepting a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Environmental History at Utah State University – Uintah Basin. Nathan will take up the fellowship this fall. We look forward to hearing Nathan’s stories about teaching and researching at USU-UB as well as about the beautiful scenery he will enjoy out there.

Well done, Nathan, and keep making UConn History proud!

Megan Streit Wins Critical Language Scholarship

Megan Streit, UConn History, Graduate StudentOn top of recently receiving a Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations (SHAFR) Samuel Flagg Bemis Dissertation Research Grant, UConn History PhD student Megan Streit can add another honor to her already impressive list of accomplishments: the Critical Language Scholarship (CLS). Out of a national field of applicants, Megan was chosen to participate in CLS’s Azerbaijani program. The CLS program is an eight-week immersive language program where students obtain beginning, advanced beginning, intermediate, or advanced training in fifteen languages that are critical to America’s national security and economic prosperity. The CLS program is housed within the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

Congratulations, Megan, on this latest, incredible honor. Well done, and keep up the great work. You make UConn History proud!

Frances Martin and Megan Streit Win Dissertation Research Grants

When one UConn History student wins a prestigious dissertation grant, that’s great news. But when two students win the award, well, that’s just another sign of the caliber of history graduate students here at UConn.

Please join us in congratulating Frances Martin and Megan Streit on winning Samuel Flagg Bemis Dissertation Research Grants from the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations (SHAFR). SHAFR is the premier academic organization for diplomatic historians and foreign relations history. The competition for SHAFR grants is competitive as candidates from all over the world vie for a select number of grants.

These grants are the latest honors for Frances and Megan as they complete their respective dissertations. Well done, Frances and Megan, and continue making UConn History proud.

Evan Wade and Britney Yancy Deliver MLK Celebration Lecture

UConn History PhD students Evan Wade and Britney Yancy will be delivering a virtual talk at Kent State University on Thursday, January 28, from 12-2 PM EST. Wade (a Professor at San Joaquin Delta College) and Yancy (a Professor at Goodwin University) will speak about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s lasting impact and his influence on the fight for fairness, justice, and equality. Their talk is titled, “A Time to Break the Silence: From Martin Luther King to Black Lives Matter.” You can register for the talk through this link. Here is more information about their forthcoming talk:

In 1967, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered a speech entitled, “A Time to Break Silence,” criticizing the United States on the Vietnam War and the continued injustices at home. He called for the nation to “rapidly shift from a ‘thing-oriented’ society to a ‘person-oriented” society. The fight for freedom and equity has made tremendous steps forward since 1967. And there is more work to be done.

As we celebrate the life of Dr. King, his call to break the silence continues to resonate in 2021 with the rallying cry for Black Lives Matter. On January 28 at Noon, join Professor Evan Wade from San Joaquin Delta College and Professor Brittney Yancy from Goodwin University for a critical conversation honoring Dr. King’s lasting impact and the current struggle for fairness, equity, and justice.

Britney Murphy Named Humanities Without Walls Fellow

Britney Murphy Profile PicCongratulations are in order to UConn History PhD student Britney Murphy. Britney will be a 2021 National Humanities Without Walls Predoctoral Fellow. Humanities Without Walls (HWW) is a “a consortium of humanities centers and institutes at 16 major research universities throughout the Midwest and beyond.” Thanks to funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, doctoral students learn about careers outside of the academy and/or the tenure track professoriate. Britney will be virtually attending the event, which includes workshops, talks, and virtual field trips, and learn how to leverage her skills and training towards careers in the private sector, the non-profit world, arts administration, public media and many other fields.

Well done, Britney, and great job continuing the tradition of UConn students participating in this incredible initiative.

PhD Alum Aimee Loiselle’s Work Honored

Aimee Loiselle, Doctoral Student, History Department, University of ConnecticutCongratulations to Dr. Aimee Loiselle (2019 PhD) for winning the Catherine Prelinger Award from The Coordinating Council for Women in History (CCWH).

Dr. Loiselle’s research endeavors and service to women, along with her personal story and non-traditional pathway to academia, embody the spirit of the Prelinger Award. The CCWH’s awards committee was particularly impressed by her commitment to mentoring and teaching immigrant women and her dedication to highlighting ordinary women’s voices and experiences. Expanding on her award-winning dissertation, the book project, Creating Norma Rae: Southern Labor Activists and Puerto Rican Needleworkers Lost in Reagan’s America, stood out as cutting-edge, comprehensive, and timely. Her book promises to be a major contribution to cultural history, labor history, oral history, women’s and gender history, and the history of capitalism and transnational political economies.

Congratulation, Aimee, on this incredible honor! This is the second award Aimee’s dissertation has received so far. Well done, Aimee, and keep making UConn History proud.

Orlando Deavila Pertuz’s Dissertation Honored

Congratulations to UConn History alum Orlando Deavila Pertuz (2019 PhD), whose dissertation, “The Battle for Paradise: Tourism Development, Race, and Popular Politics during the Remaking of Cartagena (Columbia), 1942-1984” received Honorable Mention in the Michael Katz Award for Best Dissertation in Urban History from the Urban History Association. Well done, Orlando, and keep up the great work!

UConn-Stamford Maria Oliveira ’21 Receives Phi Beta Kappa Honor

We would like to congratulate UConn-Stamford rising senior, Maria Oliveira ’21, for being just one of twenty students in the country selected as a Key into Public Service Scholar by The Phi Beta Kappa Society, the nation’s most prestigious academic honor society. This award recognizes students who have revealed a passion for working in the public sector and who demonstrate a strong academic record in the arts, humanities, mathematics, natural sciences, and social sciences. Scholars receive a $5,000 undergraduate scholarship and will participate in a virtual conference in late June that provides training, mentoring, and reflection on pathways into active citizenship (in the tradition of Phi Beta Kappa’s founders). 

As an honors history major with a minor in mathematics, Oliveira is an exceptional student. She is President of the Student Government Association at UConn-Stamford, and was named a Babbidge Scholar in 2019 and 2020, earned the 2019 Cohen and Henes Scholarship for Judaic Studies, and received the 2019 Award for Outstanding Achievement in Mathematics and the 2018 Award for Outstanding Achievement in Chemistry. Oliveira is a member of both the Phi Beta Kappa and Phi Kappa Phi Societies, and is on the dean’s list with a 4.0 GPA following her third year. Additionally, we are must excited to read Oliveira’s upcoming honors thesis on the 16th and 17th century Portuguese empire in India, which according to Professor Edward Guimont is “truly excellent work” especially given the recent Covid-19 restrictions on materials.

To read more about Maria Oliveira’s hard work and wonderful success, please click here.