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College of Liberal Arts
University of Mississippi

Record 20 UM Researchers Earn Isom Center Fellowship

Isom Center fellowship supports cross-disciplinary gender, sexuality research

Jaime Harker

Jaime Harker

JUNE 10, 2024

The Sarah Isom Center for Women and Gender Studies at the University of Mississippi has announced its largest class yet of Isom Center fellows, with 20 awardees.

The two-year fellowship was created in 2017 and provides $4,500 per year to support recipients’ research. This year’s cohort includes the center’s first staff fellow.

“When I started as director, we wanted to help promote scholarship in a number of disciplines on gender and sexuality,” said Jaime Harker, Isom Center director. “There’s a lot of interesting work that’s happening across the academic fields, and we really wanted to up our support of that research.”

This year’s cohort includes:

  • Miles Armaly, associate professor of political science
  • Sarah Baechle, assistant professor of English
  • Katharine Brown, assistant professor of criminal justice and legal studies
  • Kesicia Dickinson, assistant professor of political science
  • Kariann Fuqua, instructional assistant professor and director of museum studies minor
  • Tamar Goulet, professor of biology
  • Rachel Greenspan, assistant professor of criminal justice and legal studies
  • Sarah Hennigan, assistant professor of film production
  • Laura Huber, assistant professor of political science
  • Almas Khan, assistant professor of law
  • Amber King, instructor of writing and rhetoric
  • Frances Kneupper, associate professor of history
  • Natalia Norwood, law fellow and investigator for equal opportunity and regulatory compliance
  • Abigail Novak, assistant professor of criminal justice and legal studies
  • Anne Quinney, professor of French
  • Carmen Sanchis-Sinistera, assistant professor of modern languages
  • Teresa Simone, instructional assistant professor of theater
  • Marquita Smith, associate dean for graduate programs and research
  • Kristen Swain, associate professor of integrated marketing communications
  • Kexin Xiang, associate professor of marketing.

The purpose of the fellowship is to support Ole Miss researchers and professors as they study gender and sexuality in the context of their fields and to encourage cross-disciplinary research.

“Some of the most pressing issues in society cannot necessarily be solved by applying the methods and concepts within a singular field,” Provost Noel Wilkin said. “This is why interdisciplinary research is so important.”

Harker took her idea for the fellowship to the Office of the Provost and the Office of Research and Sponsored Planning, and each committed $90,000 to fund the program.

“It’s one of the most fun things I get to do – pass on money to really smart people, and then watch them do cool things with it,” she said.

The recipients’ research includes a variety of topics, from sexual consent in medieval English literature to perceptions of women in the military and how news media have described transgender school policies.

“There were already people doing or interested in doing this kind of research,” Harker said. “But now there’s a space for it, and if anyone wants to explore a new idea, there’s a way to get started.”

The Isom Center fellowships are sponsored by the Office of the Provost and the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs.