Call for nominations: Michael Baptista Essay Prizes 2012

The Michael Baptista Essay Prizes annually recognizes an outstanding scholarly essay of relevance to the area of Latin American and Caribbean studies, at both the graduate and undergraduate level, from a humanities, social science, business or legal perspective.

These prizes offer an opportunity for York University faculty to recognize outstanding student work in the area of Latin American and Caribbean studies at York University.

If you are a York faculty member who graded an exceptionally accomplished piece of student work (at the graduate or the undergraduate level) of relevance to these regions this past academic year, you can nominate the essay in question.

The prize includes $500 per awardee, and the winning essays will be considered for publication by CERLAC (the Centre for Research on Latin America & the Caribbean at York University).

The essays may be from a full or half course during the 2011-2012 academic year, or a summer 2011 course. Major research papers at the graduate level may also be nominated.  Submissions should be no longer than 35 pages. Deadline extensions are available in instances where significant re-writing is required to shorten the work to within that limit.

To nominate an essay:

Request a nomination form from CERLAC at or download the form by clicking here.

Submit the nominated paper and accompanying form to CERLAC no later than July 31.  Both can be submitted electronically via email to Hard copies are not required, but can be sent to: CERLAC, 8th Floor, York Research Tower, Keele campus.

PLEASE NOTE: ONLY FACULTY MEMBERS CAN NOMINATE A PAPER. Students may not self-nominate. Nonetheless, we encourage students who have received top grades and high praise on their papers to bring the existence of this prize to the attention of their instructors, so that they might nominate the paper if they so choose.

The papers submitted will be reviewed by two to three faculty readers with research interests in Latin America and the Caribbean. Both the prize winners and the nominating faculty members will be advised of the decision by the end of September.

The prizes are funded by the friends of Michael Baptista and the Royal Bank of Canada where he was a senior vice-president until his untimely death.

For more information about the essay prize, visit the CERLAC website, contact CERLAC at 416-736-5237 or email

To read some of the previous Baptista Prize-winning essays, click here.