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University of Texas University of Texas Libraries

Black Queer Studies Collection

Black Queer Studies Student Awards

The Black Queer Studies Collection Student Awards

Congratulations to the 2023-24 Winners and Honorable Mentions!

Hogan/Schell Undergraduate Award

  • Winner: Jayden McCree, Liberal Arts Honors
  • Honorable Mention: Chidera Oruzalike: Radio-Television-Film

Monica K. Roberts Graduate Award

  • Winner: Kyle Okeke, New Writers Project/English
  • Honorable Mention: Leandro Stoffels, Spanish & Portuguese

Learn more about this year's winners!



Banner announcing call for submissions to the Black Queer Studies Collection Student Awards


The UT Libraries is thrilled to announce the second annual Black Queer Studies Student Awards. These awards will recognize, honor, and celebrate excellence in student scholarship and creative endeavors in the field of Black Queer Studies.

The 2023-24 awards cycle is complete. Please check back in Fall 2024 for information about the upcoming 2024-25 awards cycle.


  • The Monica K. Roberts Graduate Award, $1,200 (pre-tax).
  • The Hogan/Schell Undergraduate Award, $800 (pre-tax).
  • Awardees may be invited to publish their work on, the online platform Monica Roberts bravely founded.
  • Winning submissions are eligible to be archived in the Texas ScholarWorks repository. Winners retain their copyright and can publish the work elsewhere.

To Submit

  • Please read the Eligibility, Submissions and Evaluation Criteria carefully.
  • Submissions are due Monday, February 26th, 2024 at 11:59 pm.
  • To submit, you need to do two things:
  1. Fill out this Google Form with your information and project abstract:
  2. Send your submission as a file attachment to 


  • All currently-enrolled students, graduate or undergraduate, from any UT Austin college or school are eligible to apply.
  • Submissions must be from the current or past academic year. Works previously published are ineligible, so that judging across submissions is as fair and equitable as possible.
  • Previously exhibited or performed work is still eligible for consideration.
  • Work submitted for or awarded other prizes is still eligible for consideration.
  • Previous awardees are ineligible for reapplication for one academic year.
  • Applicants confirm their intellectual property rights over the work by submitting to the Roberts and Hogan/Schell Awards.


  • Format: Submissions may take many forms but most may fall into two non-mutually exclusive categories: academic/research papers and creative work.
    • Academic/Research Projects: An eligible academic paper must have been written in the current or previous academic year. Work from class assignments and works in-progress are acceptable, including thesis or dissertation chapters (no more than 30 pages). Works that have gone through a peer-review process or have been published in academic journals are not eligible.

      All  submissions must engage deeply and thoughtfully with works by Black Queer and Trans authors, artists, and scholars in the Black Queer Studies Collection. We are not necessarily looking for a large quantity of citations, but rather meaningful engagement with the collection.
    • Creative/Non-traditional Works: Eligible creative works include, but are not limited to, visual art, collections of poetry and creative writing, playscripts, recordings of music or performances, podcasts, or zines. Works that have been published previously are ineligible. For example, a poem that was published in a literary magazine with an editor is not eligible, but a self-published poem in a zine is eligible.

      Creative works must be accompanied by a 1-2 page cover letter, treatise and/or artist’s statement explaining and contextualizing the work along with citations or references to the Black Queer Studies Collection. The cover letter/artist’s statement is an opportunity to explain to those outside of your discipline how your creative work serves as scholarship.
  • Length
    • Written work: Submissions should be no longer than 30 pages. In order to remain within the page limit, authors may submit an excerpt of a longer text.
      • For creative works like novels or plays, please submit a few chapters or scenes, and provide a brief plot synopsis in your artist’s statement. 
      • For dissertations or theses, please submit a chapter (or two if within the 30 page limit) and a brief abstract (200-300 words max) contextualizing how the selection fits within your larger work.
      • There is no minimum length.
    • Audio/Video Work (short films, recordings of a performance, video installation, etc.): Submissions of varying lengths are accepted, but should be no longer than 30 minutes. If the entire work is longer than 30 minutes, please provide an excerpt and include a brief synopsis (200-300 words max) contextualizing the segment within the work as whole in your artist’s statement. 

Evaluation Criteria

Submissions must draw upon the body of work in the Libraries’ Black Queer Studies Collection and must include citations and references to books, films, works, or other materials in the collection. 
Additionally, the prize committee is looking for submissions that demonstrate strong understandings of the field of Black Queer Studies, as well as originality, creativity, and critical analysis.



About the Awards


About Monica K. Roberts


The graduate award is named in honor of the late Monica Katrice Roberts (May 4, 1962 – October 5, 2020).  Known as the TransGriot (Gree-oh) a French term for West African jele/kevel/gewel/arokin a storyteller, oral historian, and praise singing poet-musician — Ms. Roberts was an African-American blogger, journalist, archivist, online talk show host and trans human rights advocate. A native Houstonian, proud Texan and unapologetic Black Trans woman, she founded her blog TransGriot in 2006 to appropriately and respectfully document violence against and accomplishments within transgender communities globally, nationally and locally. Ms. Roberts used her blog to speak truth to power, discuss the world around her, share her passion for sports and foster understanding and acceptance of trans people especially within communities of color. Beyond her blog, her writing also appeared in various online and print publications including the Bilerico Project,, the Huffington Post and the Advocate. Among her many honors, she received the Virginia Prince Transgender Pioneer Award (2015), the Robert Coles Call of Service Award (2016), a GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Blog (2018), the Barbara Jordan Breaking Barriers Award from the Mayor of Houston (2019), and the Susan J Hyde Award for Longevity in The Movement from the National LGBTQ Task Force (2020). On the day of Ms. Roberts’ memorial service, Houston’s Mayor declared October 24 Monica Katrice Roberts Day. Her great legacy continues at


About K.A. Hogan and Lindsey Schell

The undergraduate prize is named for former UT librarians K.A. Hogan and Lindsey Schell, who – alongside former UT professor Dr. Matt Richardson – founded the UT Libraries’ groundbreaking Black Queer Studies Collection in 2009. At the time, K.A. was a graduate student at UT's School of Information, and they observed issues in library cataloging practice when describing race, sexuality, and gender. They approached Dr. Matt Richardson, then a faculty member with English and African and African Diaspora Studies, and Lindsey Schell, who at the time was the librarian for Women's & Gender Studies. Together, they advocated for a new description practice that made books by Black Queer and Trans authors more visible and discoverable in UT's library catalog. To learn more about the collection’s founding, please see this article by K.A. Hogan in the journal Progressive Librarian

Prize Funding

The prize money is dispersed through the UT Libraries, and primarily draws from the Black Queer Studies Collection Endowment, originally funded through a crowd-sourced fundraising campaign in 2021. Additional support for these awards and the Black Queer Studies Collection comes from the African and African Diaspora Studies Department, the Warfield Center for African and African American Studies, the Center for Women's and Gender Studies, and the English Department.

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