Graduate Student Research

Eyes Wide Open, Downtown Los Angeles (Photo by Catherine S. Ramírez)

The RCA supports graduate students at UC Santa Cruz via our Mini-grants, the Lionel Cantú Memorial Award, and our Graduate Student Research and Professional Development Award.

Graduate Student Mini-grants
The Research Center for the Americas will award mini-grants (up to $1000 each) for UCSC graduate students conducting research in the areas of interest to the RCA including Chicanx, Latinx, and Latin American, migration, cross-border/hemispheric, and human rights studies. Funds are available for domestic and international travel for the purpose of archival research and data collection, and for research supplies and services.

Eligibility: Graduate students in good academic standing at UC Santa Cruz. 

Recipients are expected to acknowledge the RCA's support in any publications related to the sponsored research and to share their findings in a public forum convened by the RCA. They must also submit a report at the end of the fiscal year. Aplications due Friday, November 1, 2019 by 5 p.m. pacific time. Click here to apply.

Lionel Cantú Memorial Award
The RCA is proud to collaborate with the Departments of Sociology and Latin American and Latino Studies in supporting graduate students working in Latino sociology, immigration studies, transnational/cross-border studies, and gender and sexuality studies, particularly with a focus on gay men and masculinity, via the Lionel Cantú Memorial Award.  The call for applications is generally issued during the spring quarter. 

Graduate Student Research and Professional Development Award
While we encourage UC Santa Cruz graduate students to apply for our Mini-grants during the fall and for the Lionel Cantú Memorial Award in the spring, we recognize that research and professional opportunities sometimes arise at other times of the year. The RCA director maintains a modest fund that supports graduate students' research and professional development. Recipients may use the award for travel for research or to present work or to interview for an academic job at a professional meeting.

To apply, students must demonstrate that Chicano, Latino, Latin American, and/or migration studies is a primary field of their research and they must be in good academic standing in the Arts, Humanities, or Social Sciences Divisions at UC Santa Cruz. In addition to submitting a one-page application letter and itemized budget to the RCA director, applicants must be recommended by a member of the UC Santa Cruz faculty. A faculty recommendation may be in the form of a brief email (to in which the faculty member confirms the graduate student is in good academic standing and that the proposed project aligns with the RCA’s research areas of interest. Awardees must submit a one-page report and a short video to the RCA no more than 4 weeks after spending the funds and are expected to acknowledge the RCA's support in any publications related to the sponsored research.  Applications are accepted on a rolling basis and pending funding.  

Tip Sheet for Endorsement Letter Writers

Feel free to share the "Tip Sheet for Endorsement Letter Writers" by Dr. Ben V. Olguín (Robert and Liisa Erickson Presidential Chair in English, University of California, Santa Barbara) with your faculty letter writers.