2022 Dissertation Grant Recipients Announced

In February 2022, the Center for Poverty & Inequality Research participated in the UC Davis Crowfund campaign. The goal of our campaign was to fund small dissertation grants for PhD students studying issues related to poverty and inequality. Thanks to the generous support of our donors, we raised $3,500! A huge thank you to those who made these awards possible.

We briefly describe our grantees and their research below.

Jee Young Bhan
Department of Sociology

Jee Young Bhan’ research focuses on community-level interventions to increase social and cultural capital among immigrant and low-SES families with school-age children.

Paola Langer
Department of Sociology

Paola Langer’s dissertation will research the role of structural racism as a fundamental cause of health. Paola is devising new measures of structural racism in U.S. county, city, and state governments that she will link to population health data captured in U.S. vital registration systems and longitudinal surveys. In doing so, she will examine how structural racism impacts health and mortality across the life course.   

Chang-Jae Lee
Department of Economics

CJ Lee’s project uses panel data to document how public assistance programs such as the Food Stamp Program affect intergenerational mobility and improve the economic opportunity of children from disadvantaged families.

Seujung Oh
Department of Economics

Seujung Oh’s research uses data from the 1990s welfare to work experiments to quantify how the imposition of lifetime limits on welfare use affects single mothers’ welfare use, labor supply, earnings, and family income.

Karla Rodriguez
Department of Sociology

Karla Rodriguez is following the experiences of DACA recipients who do and do not develop a critical consciousness about their legal (immigrant) status. She has developed the concept of  ”immigrant amnesia” to describe how DACA recipients reconcile experiences of hardship and exclusion with their parents’ ideas about immigrant sacrifice and upward mobility, and she will be interviewing DACA recipients about the process of applying for the permit: what submitting records of their life histories as undocumented people in the United States entailed, and what it has meant to them.

Samantha Sime
Department of Sociology

Samantha Sime’s research uses mixed methods and policy implementation theory to identify barriers to, and facilitators of, the successful implementation of doula Medicaid policy with the hope of developing actionable information for stakeholders working to normalize doula services and improve maternal and fetal outcomes among Black Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC).

Jenny Wagner
Department of Public Health Sciences

Jenny Wagner’s dissertation research will examine the relationship between historical residential redlining and neighborhood health outcomes.  She plans to contribute to this literature by articulating the mediating and moderating pathways that shape the detrimental long-term effects of this racist policy, and formulating her own novel index of current institutional racism.