Published: July 2, 2020

Ethnic Studies PhD student Cassy Gonzalez is one of 132 outstanding scholars nationwide who have been awarded fellowships in the 2020 Ford Foundation Fellowship Programs competition administered by the Fellowships Office of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. Gonzalez won in the Dissertation Competition, for her dissertation project, Remnants of Chattel: Black Women, Sex Trafficking, and the Criminal Justice System. Cassy is the first person from the CU Boulder College of Arts & Sciences to ever win the prestigious Ford Fellowship, an enormous honor.

Cassy also won the Graduate School's Helen Christy Summer Fellowship and the Beverly Sears Research Award. The Beverly Sears Graduate Student Grants are competitive awards sponsored by the Graduate School that support the research, scholarship and creative work of graduate students from all departments at CU Boulder. The highest-ranked proposals are considered for a Named Graduate Student Grant; Cassy won the Eloise Timmons Award.

Cassy's research examines the phenomenon of domestic human trafficking utilizing an intersectional criminological framework. Within this research, she focuses on the experiences of Black individuals as both victims and perpetrators of trafficking and how their intersecting identities of race, class, gender, and sexuality may interact with their experiences of exploitation and navigating the criminal legal system. Her research methods include interviewing Black women survivors of trafficking, field observations of anti-trafficking events, and a historical analysis of the evolution of slavery, sexuality, and race. She loves dogs, getting coffee with friends, and reading anything she can get her hands on. Cassy hopes to be employed as a tenure-track professor at a historically Black college/university (HBCU) or at a criminology/criminal justice department where she can mentor undergrads and graduate students. 

Congratulations, Cassy, on these distinguished and much-deserved honors!