Department ofHistory

graduate

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Graduate Awards

Graduate Awards

This award is given to incoming students or current students who have exhibited exemplary academic achievement

Current Recipients:

Ana Hidrovo-Lupera

Ana Hidrovo-Lupera is a dual Ph.D. candidate in History and Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. Her research interests are located at the intersection of the history of science and medicine in Latin America and women’s and gender history. Her dissertation project will be oriented toward researching U.S. and European scientific expeditions in Ecuador during the late nineteenth and early twentieth century for the purposes of bioprospecting, medical botany, and developing patents. 

Xiangyi Liu

Xiangyi Liu is a fourth year PhD candidate in Early Modern Global History, with a minor in French and Francophone Studies. Her dissertation research focuses on Antoine Gaubil (1689-1759), an eighteenth-century French Jesuit missionary in China, and the French Jesuit missionaries in general in the eighteenth century, exploring their scientific missions and the cultural encounters between France and China during the same period. Recently she has been presenting her works at the International Symposium on Jesuit Studies, and the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies conference.

This award is given to recognize outstanding graduate students who are a candidate for a graduate degree in History

Current Recipient:

Samantha Davis

Sami Davis is currently a fellow at the John Carter Brown Library. Her dissertation, “Social Fibers: A History of Gender and Intersectionality in Early Modern Yucatan,” has been supported by the Fulbright-Hays and CCWH. She is interested in textiles, social relationships, and the role of ‘scandalous’ behavior in the manipulation of gender and racial identities. 

Current Recipients:

Steven Casement

Steve Casement is a 5th year Ph.D Candidate working in early modern global history under the direction of Dan Beaver and Ronnie Hsia.  Steve entered the department in 2018 after receiving his undergraduate degree in history-education from Le Moyne College and went on to receive his M.A. at Penn State in 2020.  His dissertation project examines the Anglo-Spanish diplomatic world surrounding the English Restoration and the English embassy in Madrid during the later seventeenth century, as well as the personal and political motivations behind efforts towards collective cooperation.  He is particularly interested in how epistolary communication fostered relationships that transcended borders as a part of this process.   

Heather Carlquist Walser

Heather Carlquist Walser studies law and politics in the United States in the nineteenth century. Her dissertation explores the roots of the amnesty crisis which occurred at the conclusion of the American Civil War and demonstrates how amnesty helped to build a legal and political system based on white supremacy. Her research has been funded by multiple institutions including the Massachusetts Historical Society, the Library Company of Philadelphia, and the Charles Redd Center for Western Studies.

This award is given to enrich the College of the Liberal Arts by providing monies for support of graduate research and/or travel expenses related to research in the Department of History

Current Recipient:

Xiangyi Liu

Xiangyi Liu is a fourth year PhD candidate in Early Modern Global History, with a minor in French and Francophone Studies. Her dissertation research focuses on Antoine Gaubil (1689-1759), an eighteenth-century French Jesuit missionary in China, and the French Jesuit missionaries in general in the eighteenth century, exploring their scientific missions and the cultural encounters between France and China during the same period. Recently she has been presenting her works at the International Symposium on Jesuit Studies, and the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies conference.

Current Recipient:

Austen Walker

Austen Walker is a first-year dual title PhD student in Latin American History and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and a Ted H. and Tracy Winfree McCourtney Family Distinguished Graduate Fellow in American History. This research funding award will support a trip this summer to Bogotá, Colombia to research in the national archive and the national library. Their research will support their paper “Detestable Remedies: Plants, Reproduction, and Indigenous Knowledge in Late Colonial New Granada,” which just won the Bantjes Award for Best Graduate Student Paper from the Rocky Mountain Council for Latin American Studies, as well as other studies of racialized and gendered knowledges in colonial New Granada.

Current Recipients:

Zachary Clark

Zachary Clark is a third year PhD Candidate in Modern Chinese History. His dissertation observes the political, environmental, and multiethnic realities that shaped modernizing efforts within municipalities across the Sino-Tibetan borderland in the early-twentieth century. His revisionist approach aims to bring the two divergent discourses of early twentieth century Tibet and Republican Era China into closer conversation, as well as highlight the overlapping discourse’s role in modern conceptions of ethnicity, identity, and modernization. Starting this summer as part of his dissertation work, he will be utilizing various fellowships and grants to travel to archives across the U.S., Taiwan, and India for the next twelve months.

Tashi Namgyal

Tashi is a PhD student in modern history of Tibet and China at Penn State University. His research focuses on 19th and early 20th century transregional interactions on the Tibetan plateau and in the regions of Sino-Tibetan borderland and Trans-Himalaya at large. Tashi holds an MA in International Affairs specializing in Asian Studies from George Washington University and a BA from University of Madras. 

Jamphel Shonu

Jamphel Shonu is a first-year doctoral student studying the connected histories of Tibetan and the trans-Himalayan regions in the early modern and modern periods. His research focuses on the social, religious, economic and linguistic ties that were instrumental in creating a distinct Himalayan civilisation based on centuries of interaction. Before coming to Penn State, Jamphel received a Master of Arts degree in International Relations from New York University (NYU) and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Bangalore University. He has also served for over seven years as the editor of tibet.net, the official website of the Central Tibetan Administration based in India, and Tibetan Bulletin, a bimonthly magazine on the Tibetan freedom movement. 

Frankie Urrutia-Smith

In 2023/24, Frankie will be a fourth-year PhD Candidate in the Departments of History and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. She holds a BA in History from Utah State University and an MA in History from Penn State. Her dissertation research will investigate the roles of widows and the institution of widowhood in the early modern Basque country as an avenue for exploring understandings of gender in the Spanish Empire. Frankie looks forward to the coming year, in which she will spend as much time as possible in archives in the Vizcayan and Guipuzcoan provinces of Spain.

Current Recipients:

Ana Hidrovo-Lupera

Ana Hidrovo-Lupera is a dual Ph.D. candidate in History and Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. Her research interests are located at the intersection of the history of science and medicine in Latin America and women’s and gender history. Her dissertation project will be oriented toward researching U.S. and European scientific expeditions in Ecuador during the late nineteenth and early twentieth century for the purposes of bioprospecting, medical botany, and developing patents. 

Travis Meyer 

Travis is a graduate student specializing in colonial Latin American religious history, with subfields in Early Modern Global history and colonialism and nationalism. Before coming to Penn State to work with Professors Martha Few and Matthew Restall, Travis earned his bachelor’s degree in history from Brigham Young University. A firm believer that Indigenous voices are crucial to understanding the scope and limits of Spanish colonialism, Travis conducts his research on religious negotiation between Spanish Catholicism and Indigenous religion through the lens of Indigenous-language documents, particularly those written in Nahuatl and Mayan languages. Born and raised in Southern California, Travis loves the summer and during the winter months can often be found taking shelter inside a movie theater.

J. Norma Watson

J. Norma Watson is a third year graduate student studying Latin American history and African American Studies. Their research interest spans from 19th to 21st century constructions of race and gender, resistance movements, and mutual aid in Brazil and Cuba. Norma has taught courses in Latinx Studies and in the African American Studies Department. The proposed title for their dissertation is Black Women at the Root: Tracing Transnational Diasporic Conversations in Black Solidarity Movements in Brazil and Cuba”. Using an ethnographic approach alongside interviews and archival research their dissertation will examine Black women’s intellectual history and roles in social movements in the 20th and 21st centuries in Brazil and Cuba.

Current Recipients:

Zachary Clark

Zachary Clark is a third year PhD Candidate in Modern Chinese History. His dissertation observes the political, environmental, and multiethnic realities that shaped modernizing efforts within municipalities across the Sino-Tibetan borderland in the early-twentieth century. His revisionist approach aims to bring the two divergent discourses of early twentieth century Tibet and Republican Era China into closer conversation, as well as highlight the overlapping discourse’s role in modern conceptions of ethnicity, identity, and modernization. Starting this summer as part of his dissertation work, he will be utilizing various fellowships and grants to travel to archives across the U.S., Taiwan, and India for the next twelve months. 

In 2002, Ann and George Richards made an outstanding contribution to the Civil War Era Center that has enabled it to permanently fund faculty and graduate student research as well as public programming. The University named the Center in honor of their generosity. In January of 2013, Ann passed away, and in her memory the Ann Richards Paper Competition Award was created to celebrate the best work that our graduate students have to offer. The award comes with an honorarium that serves as an enduring tribute to Ann’s passion for education and scholarship.

 

Current Recipients:

Best ABD- Research Category

First Place: Kellianne King

Second Place: Christopher Thrasher

 

Best Historiography Category

First Place: Micaela Wiehe

 

Best Pre-ABD Research Category

First Place: Joseph Bienko

Second Place: Austen Walker

Current Recipient:

Tashi Namgyal

Tashi is a PhD student in modern history of Tibet and China at Penn State University. His research focuses on 19th and early 20th century transregional interactions on the Tibetan plateau and in the regions of Sino-Tibetan borderland and Trans-Himalaya at large. Tashi holds an MA in International Affairs specializing in Asian Studies from George Washington University and a BA from University of Madras. 

Richards Center Endowments:

Current Recipients:

Moyra Schauffler

Moyra Williams Schauffler is a third-year PhD candidate in the Department of History.

Her research interests include the politics of veterans’ welfare in the long nineteenth century, institutional care, and histories of material culture, the built environment, and historic preservation. Her dissertation, “Constructing a ‘Comfortable Harbour’: The United States Naval Asylum and the Systemization of Veterans’ Care in the Nineteenth Century,” traces the development of systematized veterans’ care through the establishment, opening, and operation of the U.S. Naval Asylum in Philadelphia between 1810 and the early 1870s.

Heather Carlquist Walser

Heather Carlquist Walser studies law and politics in the United States in the nineteenth century. Her dissertation explores the roots of the amnesty crisis which occurred at the conclusion of the American Civil War and demonstrates how amnesty helped to build a legal and political system based on white supremacy. Her research has been funded by multiple institutions including the Massachusetts Historical Society, the Library Company of Philadelphia, and the Charles Redd Center for Western Studies.

Current Recipients:

Edward Green

Ed is a historian of Native America and the American West. My research focuses on the ways that Choctaws understood, wielded, and legitimized power within and beyond their nation between 1729 and 1924. I argue that the Choctaw approach to power resulted in continual attempts to develop and maintain interdependent relationships, both with their kin and with outsiders.

Jamie Henton

Jamie Henton is a fourth-year Ph.D. candidate in the History Department, advised by Dr. Christina Snyder. Jamie’s dissertation, “Reclaiming the Sacred Heart: Choctaw Spaces and Places in the Segregated South,” centers on race in discussing interracial relations, and Native Americans’ pursuit of sovereignty and economic autonomy in the Segregated South. Her work received funding from the College of the Liberal Arts at Penn State. Jamie is currently co-authoring an article on the criminalization of whooping in Indian Territory. Her other research interests include Black and Native tourism in the Segregated South, Black indigeneity, and African American and Native American topics in environmental history.

Kellianne King

Kellianne is a PhD candidate in 19th and 20th century United States history pursuing a dual-title in Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies. My research interests include the history of science and medicine, particularly the professionalization of neurology and psychiatry in the latter half of the nineteenth century. I am interested in the ways diagnoses, treatments, and prognoses differed along race, gender, and class lines.

Current Recipients:

Ana Hidrovo-Lupera

Ana Hidrovo-Lupera is a dual Ph.D. candidate in History and Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. Her research interests are located at the intersection of the history of science and medicine in Latin America and women’s and gender history. Her dissertation project will be oriented toward researching U.S. and European scientific expeditions in Ecuador during the late nineteenth and early twentieth century for the purposes of bioprospecting, medical botany, and developing patents. 

Héctor Linares

Héctor Linares is a second year PhD student in History, specializing in Early Modern Global History, Race and Ethnicity and Latin American History. His dissertation explores cases of indigenous and Afro-descendants who successfully negotiated their socioeconomic and political status with the Spanish Crown and achieved aristocratic titles, positions and honors. He is the author of tewnty-one peer-review articles and books chapters, and he has edited six books on Spanish nobility, ecclesiastical elites, and the Spanish Empire with some of the most prominent European publishers, including Silex, Doce Calles, Palermo University Press, and Brill. His research has been funded by numerous institutions, namely: the European Commission, the French Republic and the Spanish government. At Penn State he works under the direction of Dr. Ronnie Hsia and Amanda Scott. He also serves as the Vice President of the History Graduate Student Association.

Austen Walker

Austen Walker is a first-year dual title PhD student in Latin American History and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and a Ted H. and Tracy Winfree McCourtney Family Distinguished Graduate Fellow in American History. This research funding award will support a trip this summer to Bogotá, Colombia to research in the national archive and the national library. Their research will support their paper “Detestable Remedies: Plants, Reproduction, and Indigenous Knowledge in Late Colonial New Granada,” which just won the Bantjes Award for Best Graduate Student Paper from the Rocky Mountain Council for Latin American Studies, as well as other studies of racialized and gendered knowledges in colonial New Granada.

Micaela Wiehe

Micaela is a second year History PhD candidate and a colonial Latin Americanist. Her dissertation, titled “Making Moves: Indigenous Mobility under Colonialism in New Spain, the Philippines, and the Spanish Caribbean, 1490-1800,” centers the movement of Indigenous people as a form of colonial resistance and identity formation. Her research seeks to reconstruct the story of Indigenous migration under Spanish colonialism by tracing Indigenous people through the prosecution of crimes against marriage, the pursuit of justice in centralized courts, the practicing of pre-colonial religion, and more. With the support of the Penn State History Department, the Richards Civil War Era Center, and the Latin American Studies Program, she is looking forward to continuing her dissertation research this summer across multiple archives in Mexico City.

Current Recipients:

Kellianne King

Kellianne is a doctoral student in nineteenth and twentieth century U.S. history pursuing a dual-title in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. Her research interests include the history of science and medicine, particularly the professionalization of neurology and psychiatry in the latter half of the nineteenth century. She is interested in the ways diagnoses, treatments, and prognoses differed along race, gender, and class lines.

Hayden Lamphere

Hayden Lamphere is a graduate student in the Department of History at Penn State and joined the Center for Black Digital Research as a research scholar in the fall of 2020. She has a bachelor of arts degree from Beloit College, where she studied history and museum studies. Hayden is interested in studying twentieth-century U.S. Black female activism and organizing.

A.J. Perez

A.J. is a third-year graduate student from Houston, Texas, where he earned a bachelor of arts degree in history and a bachelor of fine arts degree in painting. His primary field is U.S. history and his secondary fields are Latin America and race. Although early in its development, his dissertation project examines the proposed annexation of the Yucatán at the tail end of the Mexican–American War.