Downing is delighted to announce that Dr Monica Moreno Figueroa, Fellow in Social Sciences and University Lecturer in Sociology, has been awarded a Pilkington Prize.

In order to raise the profile of teaching within the University, the Pilkington Prize is awarded to those individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to teaching and learning. Each year the prize is awarded to 12 members of staff who have achieved excellence in the field of teaching. The 2017 prize winners are listed here.

With 12 years of prior teaching experience at the universities of Princeton (2012), Newcastle (2008-14), Nottingham (2006-7), and Goldsmiths College (2004-6), Dr Monica Moreno Figueroa joined Cambridge in 2014 to establish provision for teaching on race, ethnicity and racism well as on intersectional and transnational approaches to social issues relating to race, gender and class oppressions. Her papers now attract the highest numbers of students in the Sociology track of HSPS, and her teaching evaluations are consistently outstanding.

Dr Moreno Figueroa combines a varied portfolio of teaching strategies, which encourage and incorporate student participation.  Praise for her teaching extended to Cambridge University Student Union (CUSU) Women’s Campaign who gave her their WomCam award for ‘Academic of the Year’, stating: “Your role as a “highly inspiring” and “supportive role model”, as well as your involvement with “Student and political activism”, has been recognised.”

She has pushed a strong agenda of diversification of the curricula in her courses, as well as calling out to colleagues to include the work of BME female and male scholars and expose students to knowledge of and from the ‘global south’. Dr Moreno Figueroa has had a large group of PhD and MPhil students further developing this agenda. She promoted the creation of the ‘Race Research Cluster’ bringing together Undergraduate and Postgraduate students, and successfully gained funding to co-host a CRASSH research group “Decolonizing the Curriculum in Theory and Practice” (2016-17). Through co-organising this seminar research group, she is also taking a leading role in contributing to bringing important conversations to the University’s teaching provision and learning environment.

Published 22nd February 2017.