Congratulations to AAUW’s 2019–20 Fellowships and Grants Awardees!July 01, 2019
“I don’t have the words to fully describe how appreciative I am, not only of the monetary support but also for the belief in my work. I have found being an AAUW fellow to be an amazing experience, and I look forward to being a part of this community going forward.”
— Jacqueline Cruz, 2018–19 AAUW American Fellow
AAUW’s fellowships and grants have been helping scholars and activists like Jacqueline Cruz for more than 130 years. These awards enable recipients to overcome barriers to education and advancement and to become leaders in business, government, academia, community activism, the arts and sciences.
For the 2019–20 academic year, AAUW is awarding $4 million in fellowships and grants to 259 women and community projects. This funding has a tremendous impact on women and their communities by expanding women’s potential and supporting their future promise.
By easing the pressure of financing academic and community work, AAUW’s awards help women tackle the growing burden of student debt and focus their efforts on the task at hand: developing the skills and experience to excel in their fields and lead innovative community projects to empower women and girls.
Meet some of the 2019–20 fellows and grantees — and learn what they plan to do with their awards.
Jennifer DeClue, an assistant professor at Smith College, researches the relationship between visual culture and the knowledge produced and circulated about black cis and trans women. Her current book project analyzes short films made by black women filmmakers who, through their engagement with archival documents and avant-garde cinematic techniques, conjure new ways of seeing black women. She argues that these films produce a black feminist avant-garde. Her goal is to complete this book project and attain a publishing contract.
Community Action Grantee
The Arab-American Family Support Center
The Arab-American Family Support Center’s Audacious Young Women of Action! (AYWA!) program encourages immigrant and refugee girls from Arab, Middle Eastern, Muslim and South Asian backgrounds in New York City to reach their full potential. This project will integrate college and career coaching, field trips and guest speakers to inspire high-school students with positive images of female achievement, build communication skills and prepare participants for higher education and professional success.
Career Development Grantee
Sabrina Basquez has a bachelor’s degree in psychology and has served vulnerable populations for nearly a decade. Currently pursuing her master’s in social work at University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Basquez is interested in the concept of “compassion fatigue” in helping fields. Specifically, she is interested in how to treat and advocate for caregivers who work long hours, are exposed to secondary traumatic stress and, as result, are at risk for burnout and PTSD.
Paula Florez Salcedo
Paula Florez Salcedo, a doctoral student at the University of Utah, studies venom from marine cone snails to develop new pharmacological tools and drug leads. Her research uses an interdisciplinary approach that encompasses neurobiology and biochemistry to transform cone snail venom molecules into novel medicine to treat pain. Following her graduate training, Florez Salcedo hopes to use her knowledge and skill to contribute to building a scientific community in Colombia. She is dedicated to serving as a role model and empowering women in STEM.
International Project Grantee
Soracha Thamphiwatana is a professor at Prince of Songkla University School of Medicine in Thailand. Through her project “An Innovative Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation for Future Entrepreneurs in Thailand,” she aims to empower women through research, and education. Her goal is to raise their voice in society, reduce the gender gap and increase women leaders. She currently is a member of the Global Young Academy and serves as cochair of Thai Young Scientists Academy.
Research Publication Grantee
Dior Kelley is a plant developmental biologist and assistant professor at Iowa State University. She earned her bachelor’s degree in chemistry from the University of California, Santa Cruz (2000) and her Ph.D. in plant biology from the University of California, Davis (2009). Her laboratory has recently characterized proteins regulated by auxin, a fundamental plant hormone, and nutrient signaling in Arabidopsis. Future work will focus on understanding how internal and external cues are integrated during seedling development to influence plant growth, with a particular emphasis on stem-cell maintenance.
Selected Professions Fellow
Salimah Hussien is a first-year master’s degree student in integrated biomedical engineering with business at Drexel University. As part of her degree, she will participate in a co-op program at a medical-device company. Meshing her medical-device interest with community service, she hopes one day to be able to open rehabilitation centers for mobility-disabled communities in developing countries and to create programs that will increase women’s participation in STEM.
To learn more about AAUW’s fellowships and grants and past awardees, visit our fellowships and grants web page, read our Following the Fellows blog and check out our online Fellowships and Grants directory to learn more about the women and organizations from your area.
From award-winning authors to international innovators, see in whose footsteps this year’s class will follow.
Seeking funding for academic or community work? Learn more about our programs and applications.
Browse the thrilling stories of our past fellows, use our interactive visual tool, and find powerful reminders of where your support of AAUW goes.