Awards and Scholarships

Deans', Chancellor's and Steck Awards

These awards recognize exceptional achievements in research projects or other creative activities, in order to encourage outstanding scholarship and promote research as an important part of undergraduate education.  Students may apply for the awards based on research projects they produced in courses taken in Spring 2022, Fall 2022, or Winter 2023, and will need to identify a faculty sponsor to write a letter in support of their application. Students can find the award guidelines and apply directly online, by going to the Deans’ and Chancellor’s Undergraduate Awards website, https://dca.ue.ucsc.eduThe deadline for students to submit applications is March 29, 2023.

Gabriel Zimmerman Memorial Scholarship

The Gabriel Zimmerman Memorial Scholarship Fund has been established to support undergraduate students in the Division of Social Sciences who are passionate about social issues and committed to public service. Gabriel “Gabe” Zimmerman graduated from UC Santa Cruz in 2002 as a Sociology major, and he was working for Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords as her Director of Community Outreach when he was tragically shot and killed. Generous donations from more than 520 alumni, community members, and the general public funded this endowment. In 2022 up to $9,000 is available to award to one or more outstanding undergraduate students majoring in any of the departments within the Division of Social Sciences.

Undergraduate majors in the social sciences are invited to apply for this scholarship by submitting: 1) a short essay (2-3 pages maximum) about their passion for social issues and commitment to public service, 2) a resume and 3) an unofficial copy of a transcript. Candidates must be in good academic standing. Applications for Legal Studies must be submitted by April 7th through this form.


Benjamin Quaye Memorial Scholarship

The Benjamin Quaye Memorial Endowment for Social Justice award is an annual undergraduate scholarship for a student with significant financial need who is pursuing educational and career goals in social justice, with a strong preference for a student who is the first in his/her family to attend college. Students who, like Benjamin, volunteer to help the underserved, such as foster youth, people with disabilities, and the homeless are ideal recipients of this award. Students will be nominated by their departments, and do not need to put forward an application for this scholarship.

Students who feel they are good candidates are invited to submit to the department a 1-2 page letter describing their qualifications for the award. Such a letter should include an account of the student’s educational and career goals, whether the student is a recipient of Cal Grant or other forms of need-based aid, whether the student is a first-gen student, and anything else about themselves and their accomplishments that they think are relevant to the social justice theme of the award. The letter should be submitted by April 7th through this form.