Five Early Career Researchers Selected for 2016 William T. Grant Scholars Program

We are pleased to announce the 2016 class of William T. Grant Scholars. Launched in 1982, the Scholars Program supports the professional development of promising researchers in the social, behavioral, and health sciences who have received their degree within the past seven years. To date, the program has sponsored more than 150 talented researchers.

Each Scholar will receive $350,000 to execute rigorous five-year research plans that stretch their skills and knowledge into new disciplines, content areas, or methods. As they commence their projects, they will build mentoring relationships with experts in areas pertinent to their development. Their professional development will also be furthered through annual retreats with fellow Scholars, Foundation staff, and other senior researchers.

This year’s Scholars will focus on important research questions that may inform policy and practice in a range of systems, including child welfare, K-12 education, higher education, and justice.

Of our newest Scholars, Vice President Vivian Tseng remarked, “Our Foundation is dedicated to funding research to advance theory, build evidence, and improve policy and practice. Key to this goal is supporting a pipeline of diverse researchers who will tackle the weighty issues facing kids and families across the country. This new cohort of Scholars has demonstrated a willingness to expand their expertise and to take some measured risks in order to take on these challenges. We are pleased to have them join our community of William T. Grant Scholars.”

Each year, the Foundation selects four to six new William T. Grant Scholars from a highly competitive pool of applicants who are nominated by their supporting institutions. The applications are reviewed by a selection committee of prominent senior academics. A small group of finalists are invited to New York for interviews.

Applications for 2017 awards are due on July 6, 2016. The online application opens on April 25. Read more about funding criteria, eligibility, required documents, and applying online.


2016 William T. Grant Scholars

When the State Takes Your Children: How the Child Protective Services System Changes Young Parents

What circumstances bring parents under Child Protective Services (CPS) supervision? How do parents respond after their children are removed from them? How does CPS intervention change the attitudes, behaviors, and material conditions of birth parents?

Matthew Desmond, Harvard University

7/1/2016–6/30/21


Healthy Pathways Toward Academic Achievement and Social Mobility for Low-SES Youth

Can a school-based intervention focused on increasing school motivation and academic outcomes of low-SES adolescents have positive effects on students’ health?

Mesmin Destin, Northwestern University

7/1/2016–6/30/21


How Does Institutional Context Matter? Shaping Success for Disadvantaged College Students

What are the organizational features of colleges and universities that promote success for low-income, Black, and Latino students?

Laura T. Hamilton, University of California, Merced

7/1/2016–6/30/21


Supporting Young Students’ Special Needs in New Immigrant Destinations

How are elementary schools’ policies and practices for special services (e.g., special education, English acquisition, and gifted/talented education) shaped by communities’ immigration contexts?

Jacob Hibel, University of California, Davis

7/1/2016–6/30/21


The Unequal Consequences of Paternal Incarceration: Considering Sensitive Periods, Resiliency, and Mechanisms

What are the consequences of paternal incarceration on children’s well-being?

Kristin Turney, University of California, Irvine

7/1/2016–6/30/21