K. Patricia Cross Future Leaders Award

The K. Patricia Cross Future Leaders Award recognizes graduate students who show exemplary promise as future leaders of higher education and who are committed to academic innovation in the areas of equity, community engagement, and teaching and learning.

Nine Graduate Students Honored with 2024 K. Patricia Cross Future Leaders Award

AAC&U announced the 2024 recipients of the annual K. Patricia Cross Future Leaders Award.

Nomination Process

All doctoral-seeking graduate students who are planning a career in higher education are eligible for nomination, regardless of academic discipline. Graduate students in fields where the master’s degree is the terminal degree (such as the MFA in art) are also eligible.

Nominations by a faculty member or administrator are required.

Nominations undergo a robust and multi-phase review process engaging past Cross Awards winners and AAC&U staff. Winners are selected based upon their demonstrated commitments to equity, innovations in teaching and learning, and community engagement as integrated components of their graduate work.


Each year's award recipients are honored and introduced to the AAC&U community at the AAC&U Annual Meeting in January.

The K. Patricia Cross Future Leaders Award provides financial support for graduate students to attend the AAC&U Annual Meeting. The award includes travel, lodging, meeting registration, and a one-year subscription to Liberal Education magazine.

For more information, contact Kathryn Enke at 202-888-4647 or [email protected].

Recipients of the 2024 K. Patricia Cross Future Leaders Awards

  • Oumarou Abdoulaye Balarabe

    Oumarou Abdoulaye Balarabe

    Higher Education and Student Affairs, Ohio University
  • Tabatha Cruz

    Tabatha Cruz

    Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development, Univsity of Minnesota
  • Anisha Gupta

    Anisha Gupta

    Preservation Studies, University of Delaware
  • Anuj Gupta

    Anuj Gupta

    Rhetoric, Composition, and the Teaching of English, University of Arizona
  • Leah Harmon

    Leah Harmon

    Neuroscience, Yale University
  • Bethany Kaser

    Bethany Kaser

    English, Duquesne University
  • Mayra Nunez Martinez

    Mayra Nuñez Martinez

    School Organization and Education Policy, University of California, Davis
  • Guerdiana Thelomar

    Guerdiana Thelomar

    Community Psychology, University of Miami
  • Teresa Torres

    Teresa Piedad Torres

    Microbe Host Interactions, Vanderbilt University

About K. Patricia Cross

The award honors the work of K. Patricia Cross, Professor Emerita of Higher Education at the University of California–Berkeley. Throughout her career, Dr. Cross helped the higher education community better understand our students, their characteristics, and their needs, and recognize what our responsibilities should be. Her groundbreaking scholarship paved the way for a legacy of work on age, socioeconomic class, gender, race, sexual orientation, and numerous other aspects of intersectional social identity. In Memoriam: K. Patricia Cross