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Faculty Nominated Awards

Each year faculty advisors have the opportunity to nominate their graduate students for different awards and prizes based on their accomplishments, exceptionality, and area of research. These awards have monetary value possible through generous donations from members of alumni, emeriti, History Associates and those that value the recognition of graduate student achievements and goals.

General Studies

Donald Van Gelderen Memorial Fellowship

The Donald Van Gelderen Memorial Fellowship is an endowment that was created by one of the History Associates’ most stalwart supporters, Dr. Jo Beth Van Gelderen, to recognize non-traditional students who, like herself, returned to graduate study in history after taking time off to pursue career and family interests.


Richard ‘59 and Jeanne Williams Endowed Graduate Fellowship

The Richard And Jeanne Williams Endowed Graduate Fellowship is used to recruit and support History graduate students of the highest caliber. Richard Williams is an alumnus of UCSB and former chair of the UCSB Foundation.

Latin American Studies

Philip W. and Maria Powell Prize

The Philip W. and Maria Powell Prize is awarded to a History graduate student who has made a distinguished contribution to Latin American and Iberian studies at UCSB. It is given in memory of Philip W. Powell, a founding member and first chair of the department, who was Professor of History from 1948 to 1981

United States

Van Gelderen Graduate Fellowship

The Van Gelderen Graduate Fellowship was established by longtime History benefactor JoBeth Van Gelderen and her late husband, Don, to support graduate students in American history, preferably students of the American West.

Deconde/Burns Prize

The DeConde/Burns Prize is awarded to a graduate student judged to be the best in outstanding accomplishment in foreign relations generally, with a preference for students in U.S. foreign relations. It was established in 2005 with a gift from Dr. Andrew Farrand (PhD 1979) to honor emeritus Prof. Alexander DeConde, a former chair of the department, and Prof. Richard Burns of CSULA, the two men who, he says, taught him to “think and analyze and express myself clearly.”

Robert L. Kelley Fellowship

The Robert L. Kelley Fellowship recognizes the outstanding graduate student in the fields of Professor Kelley’s interest: U.S. intellectual history, public history, or the history of public policy. Robert Kelley was one of the founding members of the UCSB Department of History.

Wilbur R. Jacobs Prize

The Wilbur R. Jacobs Prize honors Wilbur R. Jacobs, Professor of History from 1949 to 1988 and a founding member of the History Department. It is awarded to an outstanding History graduate student in one of the three areas of Professor Jacobs’ research interest: colonial, Native American,
or frontier studies.


Esme Frost Fellowship

The ESMÉ FROST FELLOWSHIP was created by emeritus Professor Frank J.
Frost in memory of his daughter Esmé, after her tragic death in an automobile accident. The fellowship supports graduate study toward the Ph.D. degree in the various fields of pre-modern European History, including Ancient Mediterranean work, Medieval Europe, and Early Modern Europe.

Ken Mouré and Sara Norquay Graduate Student Award

Kenneth Mouré was professor of European economic history at UCSB from 1989-2009 and chair of the department from 2005-2009. Upon leaving to chair the History department of the University of Alberta, Prof. Mouré and his wife, artist Sara Norquay, created this award to support graduate student research in European archives and libraries.

Mary Beth McGee Fellowship Fund

The Mary Beth McGee Fellowship Fund, an endowed fund, shall be used to support graduate study toward the Ph.D. degree in medieval and early modern European history, including European overseas empires (ca. 1000 – 1850 CE).

Scholarly Excellence

Rick K. Mayberry Award

The Richard K. Mayberry Award goes to Ph.D. students in the Department of History for overall scholarly excellence. This prize is to be used for purchase of books in the student’s area of study. It is given in memory of Richard K. Mayberry, UCSB graduate student (1979-80).

Medieval Studies

Warren Hollister Memorial Fund

The C. Warren Hollister Memorial Fellowship was created in 2002. It honors the memory of Warren Hollister, a founding member and former chair of the department (1958 – 1992) who turned UCSB into a world-recognized center for the study of medieval European history. The Hollister Fellowship supports graduate students in the field of medieval European history.


Bruce Anderson Memorial Fellowship 

The J. Bruce Anderson Memorial Fellowship is awarded to the outstanding teaching assistant in the Department of History, in memory of J. Bruce Anderson, UCSB graduate student (1969-76).

African History

African and African Diaspora Fellowship

Established by Helen Murdoch, History Associates President, to honor a graduate student who is doing impressive work in African History, history of the African Diaspora, including African-American history.

Middle East

Stephan and Eloise Hay Fellowship

The award honors the memory of Professor Stephen Hay, who died in March 2001. The award supports graduate study of Islamic thought and culture.

Public History

Michael Bransfield Prize

Michael Bransfield was a highly talented member of one of the department’s first classes in Public History. An avid environmentalist, Michael hitchhiked across the country twice by himself, camping along the way. Here began his love affair with the national parks, especially Yosemite. Michael died prematurely in 1983 while completing an internship in Louisiana. His extensive personal library forms the basis of the department’s Public History book collection. This prize was created in 2011 through a generous gift of Michael’s sister, Kate (Kathy) Bransfield, with support from Michael’s many friends and colleagues. It recognizes the best paper or project in Public History by a graduate or undergraduate student.

Robert L. Kelley Fellowship

The Robert L. Kelley Fellowship recognizes the outstanding graduate student in the fields of Professor Kelley’s interest: U.S. intellectual history, public history, or the history of public policy. Robert Kelley was one of the founding members of the UCSB Department of History.

Service Award

Dick Cook Memorial Fellowship

The Dick Cook Memorial Award is presented to a graduate or undergraduate student who is outstanding in terms of service to the department. It is given in honor of Dick Cook, the founding president of the UCSB History Associates. This gift is eligible for matching dollars from the Van Gelderen challenge.


Required Materials for Nomination:
  • Letter of recommendation for each individual student you nominated, named “Student Last Name, First Name”. You’ll be able to upload your letter of recommendation using the nomination link below.
  • Deadline: Friday, April 19, 2024

Please nominate your students for any of the above prizes/awards that apply to them using this link: https://forms.gle/ocso9xEpx7B47tCb6