HUX Student Winners of the CSUDH Graduate Thesis/Project of the Year

HUX student success in the annual, university-wide CSUDH Office of Graduate Studies Thesis/Project of the Year competition is a tribute to the academic excellence of our students. This is a competition between all of the graduate programs in the university in which students produce theses or projects as the "capstone experience" in their degree.

In every year since entering the competition (2000), a HUX student has won outright or tied for first place in at least one of the separate competitions for outstanding thesis and outstanding creative project.


  • HUX student Randall Weaver has been awarded for the 2013 Outstanding Thesis in the Humanities at CSUDH! His thesis, entitled The Forest Beneath The Clouds: Chinese-Americans And Accommodation In Nineteenth Century Northwestern California (Thesis Committee Chair: Linda Pmerantz-Zhang, Ph.D), analyzed the experience of Chinese-Americans in northwestern California between 1850 and 1900. This was accomplished by a comparison of the conditions and experiences of two adjacent Chinese-American communities in Humboldt and Trinity Counties.


  • Michael Kimmel won the CSUDH Outstanding Project of the Year for his play: “In Lincoln’s Footsteps." His mentor was Dr. Abe Ravitz. This play, based on the assassination of President James A. Garfield, is extremely laudable, for its interesting development of the characters, a difficult venture for a dramatist when dealing with actual historical figures whose true realities are a matter of public record in the preserved so-called antiquities of the era, a time rich in tumultuous literary possibilities.

  • Jeremiah Shelton was the co-winner of the CSUDH Outstanding Thesis of the Year for his paper entitled: “A Comparative Reader-Response Analysis between ‘The Stranger’ and’ Crime and Punishment’." His mentor was Dr. Lyle Smith. This thesis offers unique and compelling research, analysis and insight as the writer explores the themes of Dostoyevsky’s and Camus’s canonical exploration of their protagonists’ motivations for crime while discovering and revealing his own personal misdeed’s motives in relation to those. The negotiation of rigorous academic exposition with the writer’s own introspection while incarcerated produces an innovative study that offers new dimensions to the scholarship regarding the novels under review and also the scholarship of the reader-response genre, one that employs research methodologies that are both quantitative and qualitative.

    MA Humanities External Degree program students awarded CSUDH Masters Project and Masters Thesis of the Year.


  • Charles Sawin White Jr. won the 2010 CSUDH Outstanding Project of the Year for his work entitled: “Right Brain Killed Left." His mentor was Dr. Jacqueline Shannon. Mr. White’s original composition “Right Brain Killed Left” is a through-composed suite of seven movements, inspired by many of the humanities, including music, history and philosophy. The musical influences range from Classical to jazz and popular artists including Ludwig van Beethoven, Esquivel, Maria Schneider, Igor Stravinsky and Stan Kenton. The philosophical influences come from studies of Zen Buddhism, Chinese Tao and Utopian society; the historical influence from the type of ensemble used, that of the U.S. Navy Fleet Band, a 35-60 piece ensemble centered on the traditional jazz big band most commonly associated with the Swing era of the 1930’s and 1940’s.


  • Megan Andassarov won the 2009 CSUDH Outstanding Thesis of the Year for her paper entitled: “Thracian Art: Unique or Highly Influenced.” Her mMentor was Dr. Bryan Feuer. This thesis elaborates the defining features of Thracian art through precise elaboration of the artistic practices of different cultural influences, the Greeks, Persians, and Scythians, using comparative analysis that is detailed and nuanced. Her conclusions, that in fact there is considerable evidence to reevaluate the historical assumptions about Thracian art, are amply supported.



  • Michael Vezzuto was 1st runner up in 2008. His thesis was entitled The Divine Proportion and It's Uses in Musical Composition: An Investigation and Interpretation.

  • 2007

  • Robert W. Alcock won all-campus Thesis of the Year in 2007. His thesis was entitled Brothers inArms: The Daley Boys in the First World War.

  • 2006

    • Eric Sandberg won CSUDH Outstanding Graduate Thesis of the Year for "Unity and Isolation in the Novels of Virginia Woolf." His mentor was Stephen Clifford (Literature).
    • Dianne Drayse Alonso won CSUDH Outstanding Graduate Project of the Year for "The Linocut: A One-Hundred Year History and Redemption of a Marginalized Medium." Her mentor was Patricia Gamon (Art).

    From left: CSUDH Provost Allen Mori, Dianne Drayse Alonso, and HUX Professor Patricia Gamon.



    • Daniel Stewart won CSUDH Outstanding Graduate Thesis of the Year for "General Sherman in Fayetteville, North Carolina: Impact on a Community." His mentor was Dr. Judson Grenier (History).
    • Rosie Taravella won CSUDH Outstanding Graduate Project of the Year for "Mother of Frankenstein," a two-act play. Her mentor was Dr. Hal Marienthal (Literature).


    • Michael Carlos (HUX 2003 alumnus) won CSUDH Outstanding Graduate Thesis of the Year (Arts and Letters category) for "The Political Implications of Modernism: The Brecht-Lukacs Debate." His mentor was Dr. Thomas Giannotti, Jr. (Literature).
    • Jonathan Clark (HUX 2003 alumnus) was runner-up for CSUDH Outstanding Graduate Project of the Year for "Photogravure: Art and Technique." His mentor was Dr. Louise Ivers (Art).


    • Chris Conkling (HUX 2003 alumnus) won the CSUDH Outstanding Graduate Project of the Year, 2003, for “’Twa Corbies’: An Original Stage Play Based on the Historic Sir Thomas More/William Tyndale Debates.” Chris wrote the screenplay for the animated version of The Lord of the Rings.
      About the HUX program brochure, he remembers saying to himself, “You mean I can get a degree in all the things I’m interested in anyway and for reading books I want to read?”


    • Marchelle Brain (HUX 2002 alumna) tied for the CSUDH Outstanding Graduate Thesis of the Year, 2002, for “Implications of the Children in The Brothers Karamazov: Searching for Unity in the Polyphonic Novel.” Her faculty mentor was Dr. Thomas Giannotti, Jr. (Literature). Her husband is also a graduate of the HUX program, and is pursuing a Ph.D. in History at U.C. Berkeley.
    • Teri Robertson (HUX 2002 alumna) tied for the CSUDH Outstanding Graduate Project of the Year, 2002, for “The Creation of a Single-Panel Cartoon Series” (called Snapshots). Her mentor was Professor Bernard Baker (Art). She has found the comic strip to be a great way to communicate the Humanities: “The comic strip talks about who we are every single day in a completely honest way. It’s kind of a diary of our times—a two-second pleasure that everyone takes with their breakfast.”


    • Kristin Weber won the CSUDH Outstanding Graduate Thesis of the Year, 2001, for “A Jungian Study of Violence and Grace in the Fiction of Flannery O’Connor.”
    • Wayne Wesley Ignalls won the CSUDH Outstanding Graduate Project of the Year, 2001, for “Bosworth, 1485: A Tactical Level Simulation of the Battle of Bosworth.” His mentor was Dr. John Auld (History).


    • Andrew Cox (HUX 2000 alumnus) tied for the CSUDH Outstanding Graduate Thesis of the Year, 2000, for "The Criminal Trial of O.J. Simpson and Enlightenment Rationalization of Knowledge."
    • John Deaderick (HUX 2000 alumnus) won honorable mention in the CSUDH Outstanding Graduate Project of the Year, 2000 competition.