Established in the Fall of 2009, the Justice Carlos R. Moreno Prize is awarded annually to the graduating senior(s) whose senior essay demonstrates exemplary research and work in the field of Latinx Studies or on the Latinx experience in the United States. For the past six years, the prize has been granted to two seniors in recognition of their scholarly commitment to exploring and broadening the study of Latinx people while at Yale. It continues to encourage and support student research on Latinx history, politics, and culture as critically important areas of study and is presented alongside college and essay prizes during the residential college graduation ceremonies.
The Justice Carlos R. Moreno Prize honors the work and life of celebrated Yale Latino Alumnus, Carlos R. Moreno, perhaps the first Latinx student to write a senior essay in the field of Chicano Studies at Yale College. Among the first Latinx people to graduate from Yale, he helped foment the Latinx community by founding “Los Hermanos,” which is now the present-day MEChA. In October of 2013, the US Senate confirmed Justice Moreno as the new US Ambassador to Belize. Prior to his appointment as Ambassador, he served as Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of California from 2001 to 2011. We here at La Casa are delighted to continue honoring Justice Moreno’s commitment to social justice and Latinx activism and are thankful for his sustained support of the prize named in his honor.