Department Awards

The Jeffrey S. Tanaka Asian American Studies Grant

Sponsored by the Asian American Studies Department, University of Illinois, Urbana‐Champaign for Graduate Students, 2022‐2023

The Department of Asian American Studies at the University of Illinois, Urbana‐Champaign, is pleased to announce the availability of a graduate student research grant. The grant is designed to assist a graduate student with their research in areas directly relating to Asian American studies.

This research grant is named for Jeffrey S. Tanaka, a professor in the University of Illinois’ departments of Psychology and Educational Psychology until his untimely death in 1992. He was well known by his students for his generosity in mentoring graduate students.


  1. Any University of Illinois graduate student is eligible to apply, with preference given to dissertation writers.
  2. Grant is to be used to conduct research directly related to and which will contribute to the field of Asian American Studies.
  3. The grant in the amount of up to $1,000.00 must be used for direct research expenses, including travel and material purchases. All expenditures are subject to University guidelines.
  4. The grant must be expended by August 15, 2024. Application materials must include the following:
  • A current scholarly curriculum vitae.
  • A two‐page statement describing the research project and how it will contribute to Asian American Studies. The statement should also provide a detailed budget and description of how the funds will be used.
  • One letter of support from faculty research advisor.

Materials should be emailed directly to Christine Lyke, Administrative Aide, at, phone number (217) 244‐9530.

Completed project, presentations, and any publications resulting from the project should include a clear acknowledgment of Asian American Studies Department support. Awardees are required to present their research by giving a talk in Asian American Studies.

Please submit applications by Monday, March 27, 2023.


The Betty Lee Sung Undergraduate Award

The Betty Lee Sung Undergraduate Award honors outstanding students in the Department of Asian American Studies. An award of $200 is given to an undergraduate major or minor in the department who has excelled in Asian American scholarship and shown leadership in promoting the understanding of Asian American issues on campus and/or in the community.

Betty Lee Sung graduated with a B.A. in Economics from the University of Illinois in 1948. She is an activist, author, and professor emeritus of City University of New York. A scholar of Asian American studies, her publications on Asian American race issues have been recognized as an influential force in advancing the rights of Asian Americans and immigrants in the United States. Her support of the Department of Asian American Studies funds awards like this, programming and scholarship.

The Betty Lee Sung Award Nomination Form

The Department accepts nominations made by any faculty, staff, or student, including self‐nominations. The award will be presented at the end of the Spring semester.

If you are submitting multiple nominations, please submit them separately. Please submit your nomination in the following form:

Nominee: [Insert your name]
Contact: [Insert their contact email]
Nominator: [Insert your name]
Contact: [Insert your contact email]

Body of the nomination should include:

  1. Describe your relationship to this person.
  2. What has this person done to promote understanding Asian American issues. Provide 1‐2 examples. (Please limit your response to 350 words.)
  3. How has this person demonstrated excellence in Asian American studies? Provide 1‐2 examples. (Please limit your response to 350 words)

You may attach supplemental materials such as a resume to aid the nomination.

AWARD NOMINATION LETTERS MUST BE SUBMITTED to Christine Lyke at no later than MONDAY, MARCH 27, 2023.

If you have any questions, please contact Christine Lyke at

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