Carnegie Mellon University

Recent Achievements

Congratulations to our recent recipients of research grants, professional recognition, teaching awards and more.

Research Grants & Fellowships

José Estrada has been selected as one of the 2021-2022 Provost's Inclusive Teaching Fellows at the Eberly Center for Teaching Excellence and Educational Innovation. 

Mame-Fatou Niang has been awarded the Melodia Jones Chair, a distinguished visiting position in the  Department of Romance Languages and Literatures at the University of Buffalo, where she will be in residence during the Fall 2021 semester. 

Jacob Feldgoise (minor: Chinese Studies) is the recipient of the highly renowned James C. Gaither Junior Fellowship, which will fund him to work at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

Mame-Fatou Niang is the recipient of a Falk Grant for her research project titled, “Race and Remembrance in the 21st Century”.

2020 Carnegie Mellon University graduate Zachary Rapaport (major: Hispanic Studies) has obtained a fellowship with the highly selective, nine-month Urban Fellows Program which introduces a diverse group of college students and graduates to local government and public service.

Seth Wiener has been selected as one of the Fall 2020-2021 Faculty Fellows for the Innovative Models for Undergraduate Research (IMUR) Program through the Eberly Center.

Felipe Gómez has been selected as one of the 2020-2021 Provost's Inclusive Teaching Fellows to redesign the undergraduate class "Comics, Community, and Coding: Electronic Textuality and Culture in Latin America".

SLA doctoral candidate Joy Maa has received a two-year MEXT scholarship from the Japanese government to conduct dissertation research in the Japanese Linguistics program at Osaka University.

Teaching Awards

Nuria Ballesteros Soria is the recipient of the 2020-2021 Graduate Student Teaching Award. Soria is a Ph.D. student recognized for her dedication to students, pedagogical innovation, and exemplary commitment to professional development as an educator as well as a scholar.

Felipe Gómez is the recipient of the 2020 Teaching Innovation Award. Gómez holds a Ph.D. in Spanish Language and Literatures (U. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, U.S.A.) and is a Teaching Professor of Hispanic Studies (HS) in the Modern Languages Department at Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh. Gómez’s area of expertise is 20th-21st century Latin American cultural studies, focusing on the analysis of countercultural expressions within literature, film, popular music, and comics and graphic novels. His research interests also include the cycles of political violence and impunity in 20th century Latin American history as presented in its literature and popular culture. He has co-edited and written for critical volumes examining the literary production of Colombian writers Andrés Caicedo and Evelio Rosero, and has authored dozens of articles and chapters on recent and contemporary Latin American literature, films, and comics. His current research project examines manifestations of resilience and endurance in Spanish-language apocalyptic comics, analyzing community responses and survival strategies employed by their protagonists. His Latin American Comics Archive (LACA), which originated from a 2016 Dietrich/Mellon seed grant, was nominated for a Dean's Educational Innovation Fellowship Award at CMU, and was recently awarded “Best Formative Initiative Developed in 2018” by the Hispanic Digital Humanities international organization.

Lexi Adams is the recipient of the 2020 Dietrich College Graduate Student Teaching Award.  Lexi graduated with a Ph.D. from the Department’s Second Language Acquisition program and has taught courses in Spanish in the Hispanic Studies Program and courses for English language learners in the English Department and at CMU-Qatar.   She also serves as an Assessment Fellow of Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences.

Undergraduate Highlights

Polina Petrov earned a Silver Medal and Alexander Dorfman earned an honorable mention in the American Council of Teachers of Russian's annual National Post-Secondary Russian Essay Contest. Over 1100 students from 30 universities submitted essays that were evaluated by judges in Moscow.

Russian studies students earned 5 bronze medals, 7 silver medals, and 5 gold medals in an ACTR Olympiada of Spoken Russian. Benjamin Malinski and Julia Timmons were awarded ACTR book prizes for their exceptional performance.

Esther Bedoyan (minor: Chinese Studies) has received a Barry Goldwater Scholarship

Seung Eun Lee, Matthew Fang , Lilianna Turner, Carrie Haney, and Connor Leemhuis have been inducted into the National Collegiate Chinese Honor Society.

Kyra Balenzano (major: Hispanic Studies), Anna Sophia Boyd (major: German Studies), Jake Feldgoise (minor: Chinese Studies), Grayson Frazier (minor: Russian Studies), Rachael Johnson (major: French and Francophone Studies), Stephen McIntosh (minor: Japanese Studies), Rachel Motz (minor: Chinese Studies), and Douglas Patterson (minor: Hispanic Studies) have been inducted into the honor society Phi Beta Kappa

Jonathan Fritz (MCS 2020, Physics with an additional major in German Studies) has received a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship in Germany.

Haider Nazir (DC 2020, Global Studies with an additional major in Chinese Studies and a minor in Religious Studies) was awarded an Fullbright English Teaching Assistantship to go to Taiwan but declined in order to accept the Yenching Academy Scholarship. 

Victoria (V) Reiter ( DC 2020, Global Studies with additional majors in Chinese Studies and Hispanic Studies) received a Fullbright English Teaching Assistantship in Columbia.

Haider Nazir and Christopher Vielott are recipients of the 2020 G. Richard Tucker Award for Scholarship and Leadership. The award was established in honor of Dr. G. Richard Tucker, Paul Mellon University Professor of Applied Linguistics Emeritus, who retired in 2015. It is presented annually to a student in recognition of scholarly excellence in modern languages, and for leadership and dedication to the university.