Prof. Ming Hsu Chen Wins Prestigious Fellowship

UC Law San Francisco Professor Ming Hsu Chen was recently awarded the prestigious Public Voices Fellowship, which will help broaden the reach of her research and ideas on important issues related to race, immigration, and equality.

Less than a year after launching a cutting-edge center that tackles issues of race, citizenship, and equality, UC Law San Francisco Professor Ming Hsu Chen was recently awarded a prestigious fellowship that will broaden the reach of her research and ideas in American media.

Chen is one of 20 distinguished experts from wide-ranging fields including medicine, technology, business, and law selected in April as a 2023 Public Voices Fellow. The fellowship is made possible by a partnership between The OpEd Project and the Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowships for New Americans.

“Including informed perspectives on race and immigration in the public dialogue is absolutely critical,” Chen said.

Chen is founding faculty director of the Center for Race, Immigration, Citizenship, and Equality (RICE) at UC Law SF, which she launched in Fall 2022. In her research, writing, and teaching, Chen has championed the inclusion of interdisciplinary perspectives in the study of equality issues that affect the lives millions of American citizens and immigrants.

“I’m eager to contribute the conversations we’re having within RICE about representational inequalities for New Americans, such as Latinx and Asian American voters and recently naturalized citizens,” she said.

The Public Voices Fellowship program seeks to amplify the voices of experts from demographic backgrounds underrepresented in American media. It aims to add diverse perspectives to key conversations that shape minds and affect U.S. policy, including on issues of race and immigration, for which Chen has ample expertise.

The fellowship, which runs from May 2023 to May 2024, will also facilitate fresh collaborations among the cohort of experts, which includes attorneys for the ACLU’s Equality Division in New York City and Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance in Los Angeles, along with sociologists from Harvard University.

Since launching RICE, Chen has invited prominent legal, sociology, and political science experts to UC Law SF campus to share groundbreaking research and ideas on issues of race, citizenship, and equality. Her center recently co-sponsored a series of events to mark the 125th anniversary of U.S. v. Wong Kim Ark, a Supreme Court ruling that guaranteed birthright citizenship in the U.S.

As a Public Voices Fellow, Chen will take part in exclusive writing seminars and workshops, one-on-one editing and coaching sessions with top journalists, monthly calls with media insiders, and ongoing mentorship from publishing experts.

The author of the book Pursuing Citizenship in the Enforcement Era, Chen is no stranger to adding her voice to important conversations about societal issues. In 2020, she gave an inspiring Tedx Talk on “a new way to think about American citizenship.”

Her work has been published in leading law reviews and social science journals. She serves as co-editor for the Immigration Prof blog (@immprof) and chair-elect for the American Association of Law Schools Immigration Section.

Chen joined the UC Law SF permanent faculty in Fall 2022 after previously serving as a visiting professor at the law school. During the 2022-2023 school year, she taught a fall seminar on citizenship and equality and a spring colloquium on race, citizenship, and equality, which included a series of six lectures on the intersection of race and immigration by distinguished guest scholars.

Chen was formerly the faculty director of the University of Colorado Immigration and Citizenship Law Program and a professor at the University of Colorado Law School. She previously served on the Colorado state advisory council to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. Prior to working in academia, Chen clerked for the Honorable James R. Browning on the U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, in San Francisco. She has a Ph.D. from UC Berkeley, a J.D. from NYU Law, and a B.A. from Harvard College.