UROP Special Call Awards




In response to the UCI Women’s Empowerment Initiative and the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) 2014 Special Call for Proposals, we are pleased to announce the Fellows, whose research collaborations will advance knowledge to empower women:


Jessica Pedraza
Social Science major

Socioeconomic Status:
The Impacts of Familismo on Latinas Decision-Making Process in Academia

Mentor: Caesar Sereseres, Political Science


Paola Sotelo
Social Ecology major

Mi Salud, Mi Vida:
Examining the Impact of Family Members on Health Behaviors of Latina Breast Cancer Survivors

Mentor: Dara Sorkin, Medicine


Jazmyne McNeese
Sociology major

Black Economic Discourse Assessing Wealth, Gender and Linked-Fate

Mentors: Samuel Gilmore, Sociology & Tiffany Willoughby-Herard, African American Studies


Katerine Alegria, Stephanie Fernandez
Sociology majors

Latina College Students, their Perceived Relationship with their Fathers, and Academic Persistence

Mentor: Jeanett Castellanos, Social Science


Edward Gutierrez
Psychology & Social Behavior major

Latina and Latino Racial Microaggressions and Well-Being:
A Quantitative Analysis

Mentor: Jeanett Castellanos, Social Science


Evangel Penumaka
Political Science major

A Critical Discourse Analysis of Media Representations of Rape in the U.S and India

Mentor: Victoria Bernal, Anthropology


Danielle Lauber
Criminology, Law & Society major

The Gender Paradox in Homicide

Mentors: Keramet Reiter, Criminology, Law & Society & Nicholas Scurich, Psychology & Social Behavior


Tarra Laperdon
Social Science major

Turning the Point:
The Adjustment in Pursuing a Career as a Female Professional Dancer

Mentor: Jeanett Castellanos, Social Science


Ashley Burnett
English major

The Transformation of the American Female Bildungsroman during the 20th Century

Mentor: Amy Wilentz, English


Laura-Elena Garza
Sociology major

The Difference in Rape Myth Acceptance among Latina and White Undergraduate Students

Mentor: Francesca Polletta, Sociology


Susana Verduzco
Anthropology major

Vaginas and Dungarees:
The Life, Strife and Disparities of the Enlisted Woman in the Armed Forces

Mentor: Jennifer Terry, Humanities & Arts


Venus Green
Political Science major

"It takes a Village”:
The Role of Family on African American Female Undergraduates’ (AAFU) Academic Success

Mentor: Jeanett Castellanos, Social Science


Monica Becerra
Psychology & Social Behavior major

African American and Latina Graduate Students:
Mentorship, Persistence, and Well-Being

Mentor: Jeanett Castellanos, Social Science


Peying Lee
Sociology major

Shelters' Support of Homeless Women and Staff

Mentors: Jacob Avery & Samuel Gilmore, Sociology


Alejandra Hernandez
Sociology major

Evolving Leadership Styles and Gender

Mentor: Francesca Polletta, Sociology


Marie Hautier
Film & Media Studies major

Pauline Lesterquy
Economics major

Gender Mix and Balance:
Insights on a Source Credibility Bias in Economic Decision-Making and Tolerance to Risk

Mentor: Michael McBride, Economics


Austin Chen
African-American Studies major

Tracing the Shadow of Slavery in Post-Colonial Thought:
A Critical Reading of Homi Bhabha and Fanon

Mentors: Jared Sexton & Tiffany Willoughby-Herard, African American Studies


Nicole Taylor
Psychology & Social Behavior major

How Familial Characteristics and Parental Gender Socialization Influences the Divergence of Expectations and Aspirations in African-American Youth

Mentors: AnneMarie Conley & Jacquelynne Eccles, Education


Lizeth Tamayo
Sociology major

Mexican American Fertility:
The Factors that Influence Fertility Rates among Women

Mentor: Frank Bean, Social Science


Nicole Ulgado
Public Health Sciences major

Design and Development of an mHealth Application:
Discovering the Specific Needs and Values of Women with Gestational Diabetes Mellitus

Mentors: Yunan Chen & Alfred Kobsa, Informatics & Dara Sorkin, Medicine


Savenaca Gasaiwai
Political Science major

The Effects of Education, Gender, and Citizenship Acquisition on the Likelihood of Voter Turnout among 1st and 2nd Generation Pacific Islander Immigrants

Mentor: Caesar Sereseres, Political Science


Yvette Leon
Chicano/Latino Studies major

The Discourse on Racial Politics on Latina Reproductive Health:
Addressing Latina Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights and Accessibility to Health Services through Community-Based Organizations and Family Dynamics

Mentor: Ana Rosas, Chicano/Latino Studies


Bijal Lal
Psychology & Social Behavior major

Tanzanian Women Coping and Well-Being:
A Qualitative Study

Mentor: Jeanett Castellanos, Social Science


Darby Darling
Film & Media Studies major

Riot Grrrl in Los Angeles

Mentor: Fatimah Tobing Rony, Film & Media Studies


Isheeta Rahman
Political Science major

Women in Political Campaigns and How the Media Portrays Them

Mentor: Daniel Brunstetter, Political Science


Veronica Castillo
Chicano/Latino Studies

Latina Students Thrive to Obtain a Bachelor’s Degree while Balancing a Busy Lifestyle

Mentor: Ana Rosas, Chicano/Latino Studies


Alexandra Wimberly
Criminology, Law & Society major

Students’ Understanding of Sexual Consent as a Tool for Reducing Campus Acquaintance Rape

Mentors: Sora Han & Donna Schuele, Criminology, Law & Society


Thalia Fabian
Biological Sciences major

Latino Medical Doctors:
The Effects of Gender and Racial Inequalities in their Education and Professional Careers

Mentor: Glenda Flores, Chicano/Latino Studies


Sabina Goldstein & Shannon Ho
Criminology, Law & Society majors

“Watch Out, Deviant Doctors are Making a Comeback”:
A Demographic Portrait of Physicians Reinstated by the Federal Government in the United States

Mentor: Paul Jesilow, Criminology, Law & Society


Long Hoang
Psychology & Social Behavior major

Mother-Daughter Attitudes toward Homosexuality:
The Gap between two Generations

Mentor: Wendy Goldberg, Psychology & Social Behavior


Shannon Chang
Sociology major

Asian American Women in Leadership

Mentors: Samuel Gilmore, Sociology & Linda Vo, Asian American Studies


Maria Nguyen
Psychology & Social Behavior major

How do Coping Strategies Affect the Mental Health of a Victim of Repeated Intimate Partner Violence?

Mentors: Meeta Banerjee & Jacquelynne Eccles, Education


Cindy Nguyen & Kathleen Nguyen
Biological Sciences majors

The Assessment of Correlation between Periodontal Disease and Breast Disease

Mentor: Hannah Park, Epidemiology


Breauna Spencer
Sociology major

African-American and Asian-American Women in Biological Sciences:
Undergraduate Experiences that Contribute to Persistence and Success
at UC Irvine and UC Los Angeles

Mentors: Joanne Christopherson, Social Science; Samuel Gilmore, Sociology & Douglas Haynes, History


Vincent Doan
Public Health Policy major

Level of Acceptance among Vietnamese-American Women on Various Education and Counseling Approaches

Mentor: Veronica Vieira, Program in Public Health


Matthew Guevara
Criminology, Law & Society major

Law Enforcement Interpretative Understanding of Sex Trafficking Bodies through Policy

Mentor: Valerie Jenness, Criminology, Law & Society