Awards and Fellowships


Please email the Center for the Study of Women and Society office at email, for further information about the following awards.

Koonja Mitchell Award
The Koonja Mitchell Memorial Prize will be awarded to a student in any Ph.D. Program at the Graduate Center working on a dissertation concerned with issues of social justice. Special consideration will be given to work on militarism and trauma.

To be considered for the prize, candidates must submit a 10-page dissertation prospectus and a CV to A letter of recommendation from the student’s advisor should be sent to the same address, with the student’s name and award name in the subject line.

These materials should be emailed to:

The deadline for proposals is February 15th, 2022.

The amount of the award is $1000. The prize will be announced in the middle of the Spring 2022 semester.

2020 Recipient
China Sajadian, “Debts of Displacement: Syrian Refugee Farmworkers at the Lebanese-Syrian Border”
2019 Recipient
Natalie Haziza, “Traces of Absence: How the trauma of the Yemenite, Mizrachi and Balkan Children Affair is present in photographs and home movies”
2018 Recipient
Arinn Amer, “Tar and Feathers: Colonial Culture and the Making of Patriot Violence”
2017 Recipient
Sonia Sanchez, “Toward Complex Solidarities: Lessons from Migrant Justice Organizing at Intersections of ‘Multiple Struggles'”
2016 Recipient
Einat Manoff, “Counter-Mapping in the South Bronx: Local Perscpective on Disinvestment and Over-Policing”
2015 Recipient
Wen Liu, “Beyond Orientalism and Cultural Essentialism: A Queer Geopolitics of Asian Americanness in Neoliberal Time”
2014 Recipient
Rachel Brown, “The Emotional Politics of Migrant Labor: Domestic Caregivers and the Case of Israel”
2013 Recipient
Carolina Munoz Proto, “‘When I Heard about the March’: Peacebuilding through Testimonies and Participatory Archives”
2012 Recipient
Mohamad Junaid, “Being and Becoming in Kashmir: Military Occupation, Resistance, and the ‘Critical Experience'”
2011 Recipient
Sandra Trappen, “The Surgical Imagination”
2010 Recipient
Kim Cunningham, “The EMDR Machine: Sensory Assemblages of Memory and the New BioPolitics of Trauma”
2009 Recipient
Marisa Lerer, “30,000 Reasons to Remember: Patronage and Artistic Strategies for Memorializing Argentina’s Disappeared”
2008 Recipient
Shana Siegal, “Transgenerational Trauma related to the History of Militarized Repression of Indigenous Populations in Canada”

Sue Rosenberg Zalk Endowed Fund Award
The Sue Rosenberg Zalk Endowed Fund Award of $4000.00 will be given to assist the scholarly research of a student enrolled in the Women’s Studies Certificate Program. While special consideration will be given to proposed research projects related to globalism and transnationalism, all proposals will be eligible. Awards will be granted on the basis of financial need and academic excellence. Preference will be given to students at the dissertation stage.

Students who wish to be considered for the award should submit a copy of an unofficial transcript, their CV, a description of their project, and a letter of recommendation from the student’s advisor should be sent to, with the student’s name and award name in the subject line.

Submissions should be sent by email to:

Deadline for submissions for the 2021-2022 award is February 15th, 2022.

The prize will be announced in the middle of the Spring 2022 semester.

2020 Recipient
Joanna Beltrán Girón, Critical Social-Personality Psychology,
“Embodied Transmissions: Emotionally-Engaged Participatory Action Research with Diasporic Salvadorans”
2017-2018 Recipient
Brenna McCaffrey, Anthropology, “Pharmaceuticalizing Abortion: Feminism, Biomedicine, and Reproduction in Ireland”
2016-2017 Recipient
Sumru Atuk, Political Science, “Politics of Femicide: ‘Woman’ Making and Women Killing in Turkey”
2015-2016 Recipient
Heather Denyer, Theatre
2014-2015 Recipient
Lauren Suchman, Anthropology, “Preparing for PrEP: Comparing the Use of Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) for HIV in Two Large-Scale Public Health Campaigns”
2013-2014 Recipient
Pilar Ortiz, Sociology, “Coffee with legs: the production of gendered bodies in Santiago’s ‘cafés con piernas’”
2012-2013 Recipient
Antonia Levy, Sociology, “Polyamory Movement in the U.S. and Germany”
2011-2012 Recipient
Natascia Boeri, Sociology
2010-2011 Recipient
Zoë C. Meleo-Erwin, Sociology
2009- 2010 Recipient
Soniya Munshi, Sociology, “Exceptional Victims and Unruly Others: Violence Against South Asian Immigrant Women and Biopolitical Citizenship.”
2008-2009 Recipient
Valerie Francisco, Sociology, “Going Abroad: Filipino Women, Labor and Transnational Governance.”
2007-2008 Recipient
Keridiana Chez, English, “Construction of “the human” in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries”
Award $500
2005-2006 Recipients
Robert Diaz, Sociology
“Performance Studies International,”
Award $255
Kara Van Cleaf
“Eastern Sociology Society”
Award $255
Craig Willse
“Eastern Sociology Society”
Award $255
Salvador Vidal-Ortiz
“First Congress of Qualitative Inquiry”
Award: $255
2002-2003 Recipient
Ananya Mukherjea, Sociology
Award: $1100

Carolyn G. Heilbrun Dissertation Prize
The Carolyn G. Heilbrun Dissertation Prize will be awarded to an outstanding feminist dissertation in the humanities completed at the CUNY Graduate Center in a given academic year. The prize is meant to recognize feminist scholarship consonant with the broad intellectual aims of Carolyn Heilbrun’s work.

To be considered for the prize, candidates must submit the completed dissertation and a dissertation abstract by email. A letter of recommendation from an advisor, committee member, or EO of the student’s program should be emailed separately. These materials should be directed to with the student’s name in the subject line. The amount of the award is $300. The prize will not be awarded in a given year unless the committee agrees that the dissertation is worthy of distinction

The competition for the Carolyn G. Heilbrun prize will be open to dissertations completed between April 1, 2021 and May 14, 2022.

For further information, contact the Center for the Study of Women and Society office at 212-817-8895 or e-mail us at

Submissions should be sent to:

Center for the Study of Women and Society, Room 5116
The Graduate Center, CUNY
365 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10016

Deadline for submissions is May 15th, 2022.
The prize will be announced at the end of May.

2020-2021 Recipient
William Camponovo, English, “‘An instrument in the Shape / of a Woman’: Reading as Re-Vision in Adrienne Rich”
2019-2020 Recipient
Erin Spampinato, English, “Awful Nearness: Rape and the English Novel, 1740-1900”
2018-2019 Recipient
Madison Priest, English, “The Women We Don’t Want to Be: The Anti-Heroine in American Women’s Modernisms”
2017-2018 Recipient
Danica Savonick, English, “Insurgent Knowledge: The Poetics and Pedagogy of Toni Cade Bambara, June Jordan, and Adrienne Rich in the Era of Open Admissions”
2016-2017 Recipient
Alberto McKelligan Hernández, Art History, “Mónica Mayer: Translocality and the Development of Feminist Art in Contemporary Mexico”
2015-2016 Recipient
Annie Cranstoun, English, “Ceasing to Run Underground: 20th-Century Women Writers and Hydrological Thought”
2014-2015 Recipient
Magdalena Bogack-Rode, English, “Straight Record and the Paper Trail: From Depression Reporters to Foreign Correspondents”
2013-2014 Recipient
Stephanie Campos, Anthropology, “‘Small Village/Large Hell’: Cocaine and Incarceration in Lima, Peru”
2013-2014 Honorable Mention
Amanda Springs, English, “The Advance Mobile Woman: Representations of British Women’s Physical Mobility, 1660-1820”
2012-2013 Recipient 
Jen Jack Gieseking, Environmental Psychology, “Living in an (In)Visible World: Lesbians’ and Queer Women’s Spaces and Experiences of Justice and Oppression in New York City, 1983-2008”
2011-2012 Recipient
Sara Pursley, History, “A Race Against Time: Governing Femininity and Reproducing the Future in Revolutionary Iraq, 1945-63”
2010-2011 Recipient
Stacie McCormick, English, “The Open Wound: Writing Black Female Bodies”
2009-2010 Recipient
Sophie Martinez, French, “Gender, Architecture, and Self-Construction in the Works of Mademoiselle de Montepensier”
2009-2010 Honorable Mention
Jody Cross-Hansen, History,”Transcendental Reform: Quaker Women and Social Reform During the Kicksite Schism”
2008-2009 Recipient
Sara McClelland, “Intimate Justice: Sexual Satisfaction in Young Adults”
2008-2009 Honorable Mentions
Federica Clementi, “Recreating the Mother: Shoah Autobiography in Ruth Kluger, Edith Bruck, Sarah Kofman”
Kathryn Coad Narramore, “Beyond Agency; Women Writing Romance as Political Intervention in the English Revolution”
2007-2008 Recipients
Stepahnie Jensen Moulton, Music, “Sparring with Fate: Miriam Gideon’s 1958 Opera ‘Fortunato’”
Rebecca Wisor, English, “’My country is the whole world’: Three Guineas and the Culture of Pacifist Dissent”
Honorable Mention
Diedre Conlon, Environmental Psychology, “The Nation as Embodied Practice: Women, Migration and the Social Reproduction of Nationhood in Ireland”
Hosu Kim, Sociology, “Virtual Mothering: A Cultural Critique of the Emergent Figure of Korean Birthmothers in Popular Media”
Jean Mills, English, “Goddesses and Ghosts: Virginia Woolf and Jane Ellen Harrison”
2006-2007 Recipient
Katherine D. Harris, English, “The Nineteenth Century British Literary Annual: A genre’s Journey from Nineteenth-Century Popularity to Twenty-First Century Representation”
2005-2006 Honorable Mention
Anne M. Hayes, History, “Rich Coast : Female Prostitution in the Port Puntarenas, Costa Rica, 1880-1930”
2004-2005 Recipients
Christine Rudisel, English
Karen Winkler, Clinical Psychology
2003-2004 Recipient
Kimberly Engber, English, “Intimate Observers: American Women Writers in an Ethnographic Tradition”
Debra Wacks, Art History, Honorable Mention
2002-2003 Recipient
Jennifer Disney, Political Science
Sara Claire Peacock Raymond, English
2001-2002 Recipient
Susan H. Berg, School of Social Work, Hunter College
2000-2001 Recipient
Robin Hackett, English
Gay Wachman, English

Nina E. Fortin Memorial Fund Dissertation Proposal Award
PLEASE NOTE: The annual Nina E. Fortin Dissertation Proposal Award is not accepting applications at this time. 

The annual Nina E. Fortin Dissertation Proposal Award of $300 plus tuition is given to a student in any Ph.D. Program at The Graduate School who submits an outstanding dissertation proposal that addresses an issue of concern in the lives of women from a feminist perspective.  While special consideration will be given to those proposals that examine a health-related issue, any Ph.D. proposal that has been accepted by the student’s program is eligible.  In the event that no proposals qualify for the award, it will not be given until the following year.

Please email a 5-page summary of the proposal, including a brief bibliography. Underscore its feminist perspective, research design, and policy implications for the lives of women. Please attach a statement on the progress of the dissertation to date, (maximum two pages,) with a tentative timetable for completion, along with two letters of reference: one from your dissertation advisor, one from a professor in your discipline. Attach a completed application form.

For further information, contact the Center for the Study of Women and Society office at 212-817-8904 or e-mail us at

2016-2017 Recipient
Abigail Kolker, Sociology, “The Potency of Policy?: A Comparative Study of Filipino Elder Care Workers in New York and Tel Aviv”
2015-2016 Recipient
Emily Brooks, “‘Wayward Minors,’ ‘Prostitutes,’ and ‘Sexual Delinquents’: Gender and Policing in 1940s New York”
2014-2015 Recipient
Livia Arndal Woods, “Heavy Expectations: Reading Pregnancy in the Victorian Novel”
2013-2014 Recipient
Margarite Whitten, “Decentralizing Compassion: Biomedical Politics of Ethics and Life in US Community Health”
2012-2013 Recipient
Amy Baker, “Running Head: Unmasking the Female Face of the Risky Lending Crisis”
2011-2012 Recipient
Risa Cromer, “Inconceivable? The Politics of Frozen Embryos in the United States”
2010-2011 Recipient
Leah Souffrant , English,”‘She said plain, burned things’: A Feminist Poetics of the Unsayable in Twentieth Century Literary & Visual Culture”
2009-2010 Recipient
Diana Polson, Political Science, “The Caring Precariat: Home-Based Care Work in America’s Three Largest Cities”
Kery Chez, English, “The Affect of Humaneness: Humane Movements and Pet-Keeping in late 19th-century England and America,” Honorable Mention.
2008-2009 Recipient
Lauren Jade Martin, “Reproductive Tourism in the Age of Globalization”
2007-2008 Recipient
Zeynep Goker, Political Science, “Silence in Presence: Feminist and Democratic Implications of Ordinary Political Practices”
2006-2007 Recipients
Jennifer Gaboury, “The Case for Gender Liberation: Citizenship and Fatherhood in the Remaking of Masculinity in the United States” (co-winner)
Alicia Bralove Ramirez, “The Road Not Taken: Portrayal of Women in Ten French Novels on the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939)” (co-winner)
2005-2006 Recipient
Jean Mills, “Goddesses and Ghosts: Virginia Woolf and Jane Ellen Harrison”
2004-2005 Recipient
Deidre Conlon, Environmental Psychology, “Women, Migration and the Social Reproduction of Nationhood”
Catherin Ma, Psychology/Social Personality, “Beyond Mother’s Milk: A Critical Examination of Breast-feeding and its impact on Women’s Lives,” Honorable Mention
2003-2004 Recipient
Melanie Panitch, “Accidental Activists: Mothers, Organization and Disability”
2002-2003 Recipient
Ann Wallace, English, “Inscribed in Skin: Gender, Trauma and Marked Bodies”
2001-2002 Recipient
Sarah Carney, Psychology, “Analyzing Cases of ‘Failure-to-Protect’: Legal, Media, and Maternal Narratives”
2000-2001 Recipient
Anne Hayes, History, “Rich Coast: Export-Led Economic Growth and the Rise of Female Prostitution in the Port of Puntarenas, Costa Rica, 1880-1940
Melissa Ditmore, “Trafficking and Sex Work,” Honorable Mention
1999-2000 Recipient
Sue C Grady, “Low Birthweight Among Black Women and the Contribution of Residential Segregation: A Neighborhood Assessment, New York City”
1998-1999 Recipient
Julie Miller, “The Discovery of the Foundling: New York City’s Abandoned Infants, 1819-1920”
1997-1998 Recipient
1996-1997 Recipient
Cecilia T. Castelino, “Battered Women’s Relationship to the Housing in Which They Were Battered: Institutional Programs and Non-institutional Strategies Some Battered Women Use to ‘Stay Put’ and Get Their Batterers to Move Out”
1995-1996 Recipient
Ann E. Cameron, “Life Histories of Women with HIV Disease”
1994-1995 Recipient
Longmun Wong, “Disrupted Journeys: Poor Women, Institutions and Subjectivities”
1993-1994 Recipient
Ara Wilson, “Gender and Consumption in Bangkok, Thailand”
1992-1993 Recipient
1991-1992 Recipient
Margaret Yard, “Social Silences: Illustrated Features of the Epiphenomenon of Silence in the Institution of Medicine”
1990-1991 Recipient
Jaclyn Packer, “Effects of Weight Attribution on the Attitudes of Fat People Toward Physician Visits”

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