Chancellor’s ADVANCE Postdoctoral Fellowship Program

In 2013, UC Irvine began funding the Chancellor’s ADVANCE Postdoctoral Fellowship Program (CAPFP). Chancellor’s ADVANCE Postdoctoral Fellows are selected from the pool of applicants who identified mentors at UC Irvine and were ranked highly in the University of California President’s Postdoctoral Fellowship Program.

Awards will be announced beginning as early as mid-March. Inquiries regarding the program may be directed to Associate Director Sharon Block at

About the CAPFP

Criteria: Candidates who will contribute to diversity in higher education through their teaching, research or service and who will have a doctorate awarded by the start of the appointment on July 1 of the year following their applications.

Application Deadline: November 1st each year.
Faculty Mentor and Reference Letters Deadline: December 1st each year.

The Program: The UCI Chancellor's ADVANCE Postdoctoral Fellowship Program for Academic Diversity offers postdoctoral research fellowships and faculty mentoring to qualified scholars in all fields whose research, teaching, and service will contribute to the diversity and equal opportunity at the University of California. These contributions may include public service addressing the needs of our increasingly diverse society, efforts to advance equitable access to higher education for women and minorities, or research focusing on underserved populations or understanding issues of racial or gender inequalities. The program is seeking applicants with the potential to bring to their academic careers the critical perspective that comes from their non-traditional educational background or understanding of the experiences of members of groups historically underrepresented in higher education. Participants in both the President's and Chancellor's ADVANCE Postdoctoral Fellowship Program are eligible for the University of California Hiring Incentive. To learn more about the faculty hiring incentives, please refer to the President's letter, the Provost's letter, and the PPFP/CFP Faculty Hiring Incentive FAQs.

Awards and Tenure: Awards will be made to applicants who show promise for tenure-track appointments on the Irvine campus. The Fellowship will be for one year, in residence at the Irvine campus. Each award is for a 12-month period in residence.  One-year awards for 2022-2023 will fund selected scholars beginning July 1, 2022, and ending June 30, 2023, regardless of start date.

Salary: The annual award provides an annual salary beginning at approximately $55,631 . The award also includes health insurance, vision and dental benefits, four weeks paid time off and up to $5,000 for research-related and program expenses.

Eligibility: Applicants must receive a Ph.D. from an accredited university before the start of their fellowship. Successful applicants must present documents demonstrating that they are legally authorized to work in the United States without restrictions or limitations. Individuals granted deferred action status under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program are encouraged to apply.

Application Process: All applicants for the UCI Chancellor’s ADVANCE Postdoctoral Fellowship Program should follow instructions on the webpage of the University of California President’s Postdoctoral Fellowship Program. The mentor’s letter should address the department’s future hiring plans and the applicant’s potential for appointment at University of California. Applications must be completed online by November 1.

Awards will be announced beginning in March. Inquiries regarding the program may be directed to Associate Director Sharon Block at


Aidee GuzmanDr. Aidee Guzman

University of California, Berkeley
PhD in Environmental Science, Policy, and Management 2021

Aidee Guzman received a PhD in Environmental Science, Policy, and Management from the University of California, Berkeley in 2021. Her dissertation research focused on below- to above-ground interactions between crop diversity, pollinators, and mycorrhizal fungi in agricultural systems. For this work, she worked with small-scale diversified embedded in the monocultural landscape of California’s San Joaquin Valley. Her research as a Chancellor’s Advance Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of California, Irvine will examine agroecological approaches that harness biodiversity and ecosystem functioning for improved agricultural resilience. Specifically, she plans to investigate plant-fungal interactions in soils that could alleviate drought stress for small-scale farmers contending with water shortages.

She completed her BS in Botany and Environmental Studies with a minor in Latinx and Chicanx studies at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Chancellor’s ADVANCE Postdoctoral Fellowship Research Topic: The buried solution for agricultural resilience: arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi

Mentor: Dr. Kathleen Treseder

Department, School: Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, School of Biological Science

Chancellor’s ADVANCE Postdoctoral FellowshipDr. Gopolang Mohlabeng

University of Kansas
PhD in Philosophy in Physics 2017

Dr. Gopolang 'Gopi' Mohlabeng holds bachelor's degrees in physics and astrophysics from the Universities of Pretoria and Cape Town in South Africa. In 2011 he moved, on a Fulbright fellowship, to the University of Kansas where he completed his Ph.D in theoretical particle physics. After his Ph.D, he moved to Brookhaven National Laboratory as a postdoctoral research associate.

Dr. Mohlabeng's research focuses on understanding the fundamental building blocks of nature using data from the smallest scales in particle physics to the largest scales in cosmology. He is particularly focused on dark matter, a non-luminous and mysterious form of matter whose existence has been proven by cosmological and astrophysical observations. Dark matter is far more abundant than all the visible matter in the universe and is responsible for the formation of galaxies, the solar system and ultimately life as we know it. Dr. Mohlabeng's main research focus is uncovering and understanding the particle nature of dark matter and the dark sector. Dr. Mohlabeng is also quite passionate about outreach and changing the view of what a physicist should look like. He enjoys giving public talks about dark matter and having general science discussions. Outside of academics, he is an avid football (soccer) fan, likes playing pickup games and supports Arsenal football club.

Chancellor’s ADVANCE Postdoctoral Fellowship Research Topic: Illuminating Signals of Dark Matter at Current and Future Experiments

Mentor: Dr. Timothy Tait

Department, School: Department of Physics & Astronomy, School of Physical Sciences

Maria MontenegroDr. Maria Montenegro

University of California, Los Angeles
PhD in Information Studies 2021

Originally from Chile, María Montenegro received her Ph.D in Information Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles in summer 2021 and an MA in Museum Studies at New York University in 2015. Her research sits at the intersection of Indigenous studies, critical archival theory and tribal law and policy, and is in conversation with global studies and the Indigenous data sovereignty movement. Her dissertation takes the U.S. Federal Acknowledgement Process as a site in which to investigate the political, socio-cultural, and affective dimensions and roles of settler-colonial archives as they shape evidence legitimization practices within tribal recognition petitions, with particular focus on the Fernandeño Tataviam Band of Mission Indians petitioning process. Her project has been supported by UCLA’s Year Dissertation Fellowship, a UC Critical Mission Studies Grant, a Huntington Library Research Fellowship, and American Philosophical Society’s Phillips Fund for Native American Research. She has published articles in Archival Science, the Journal of Documentation, the Interdisciplinary Journal of Information Studies, and chapters in two Routledge edited volumes. María is currently the project manager of UCLA’s American Indian Studies Center’s Mukurtu Hub, the digital archivist of UCLA’s repatriation program Carrying our Ancestors Home (COAH) and part of a UC Multicampus Research Grant titled “Gifting Knowledge: Centering Tribal Stories of Cultural Preservation in Difficult Times.” She is also a consultant for Chile’s Ministry of Cultures’ Department of Indigenous Peoples in matters of cultural revitalization, digital return and knowledge organization.

Chancellor’s ADVANCE Postdoctoral Fellowship Research Topic: Unsettling Evidence: Imagining anticolonial forms of evidence for Indigenous sovereign futures

Mentor: Dr. Eve Darian-Smith

Department, School: Department of Global and International Studies, School of Social Sciences

Jorge E. Delgadillo NúñezDr. Jorge E. Delgadillo Núñez

Vanderbilt University
PhD in History 2021

Jorge is a historian of slavery, Afro-descendants, and social differentiation processes in Mexico and the Atlantic world at large. His first book project is a longue-durée study of the emergence, transformations, and disappearance of the social categories associated with African ancestry in colonial Guadalajara. It is also an examination of issues of black invisibility and historical memory in the Mexican press of the nineteenth century. Jorge’s research has been published in Spanish and English by the University of Guadalajara, El Colegio de México, and The Americas. He has also published book reviews with them and Hispanic American Historical Review. Jorge is also an alumni of the 2020 class of the Mark Claster Mamolen Dissertation Workshop in Afro-Latin American Studies held at Harvard University.

As a Chancellor’s Advance Postdoctoral Fellow, Jorge will further explore the place of slavery in Mexican history, as well as Afro-Mexicans’ contributions to colonial Guadalajara’s society, economy, and culture.

Chancellor’s ADVANCE Postdoctoral Fellowship Research Topic: A Social and Cultural History of Free and Enslaved Afro-Mexicans from Colonial Guadalajara

Mentor: Dr. Alex Borucki

Department, School: Department of History, School of Humanities

Chancellor’s ADVANCE Postdoctoral FellowshipDr. Kira Tait

University of Massachusetts Amherst
PhD in Political Science 2021

Kira Tait, PhD in Political Science is a recent graduate from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and a Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Fellow at UC Irvine. In her dissertation, she explores ordinary Black South Africans' perceptions of the law and how these perceptions impact their views of the desirability and appropriateness of appealing to courts when they have problems accessing constitutionally guaranteed services. Specifically, she studies why people choose not to use courts to secure access to water, healthcare, education, and housing when it is both legal and possible to do so. Kira’s research relies on 12-months of fieldwork funded by the U.S. Fulbright Program, the National Science Foundation, and the UMass Graduate School.

Chancellor’s ADVANCE Postdoctoral Fellowship Research Topic: Roadblocks to Access: Perceptions of Law and Socioeconomic Problems in South Africa

Mentor: Dr. Mona Lynch

Department, School: Department of Criminology, Law, and Society, School of Social Ecology

The UC Irvine Chancellor's ADVANCE Postdoctoral Fellowship is a partnership of several campus units including the Offices of the Provost, Graduate Division, and Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity.