The AAP Community Development and Social Justice Program was renamed this year to honor two Black Panther Party leaders, John Huggins, Jr. and Alprentice “Bunchy” Carter, whose commitment to community and justice serve as a model for our community-based research and service program. 

About The Program

The Community Development and Social Justice (CDSJ) Program provides AAP undergraduate juniors and seniors with a service learning opportunity that integrates research and community-based practice in preparation for graduate study in social welfare, public policy, urban planning, and public health.

Additionally, students are paired with an AAP Graduate Mentor who provides mentorship in their personal and academic development as well as advisement on the graduate school application process. Scholars also develop their resumes and/or curriculum vitae, write personal and research statements, and obtain strong letters of recommendations from professors and employers.

Community Development and Social Justice Scholars Program Information Sheet.

Students apply for the Community Development and Social Justice (CDSJ) Program in the Fall quarter. The program requires a two-quarter commitment during the Winter and Spring quarters of the application year.

Program Objectives Include:

  • Mentor students on areas of interest, career paths and graduate school planning
  • Provide scholars with opportunities to engage in the community through internships and applied research within their field of interest
  • Expose scholars to theory, research, and practice of social justice within underserved communities
  • Connect students in a supportive CDSJ cohort with access to resources and develop a community of mutual support and collaboration
  • Train students to apply for internships and research opportunities
  • Empower scholars to pursue graduate/professional school within the CDSJ fields and become agents of change in their communities and CDSJ fields

How To Apply

First, make sure you are eligible.

CDSJ applicants must:

  1. Be an AAP undergraduate student enrolled full-time at UCLA
  2. Be a Junior or Senior
  3. Have the motivation to engage in independent research
  4. Express an interest in graduate or professional school in social welfare, public policy, urban planning or public health
  5. Demonstrate academic potential for graduate study

After ensuring eligibility, you can apply by using the CDSJ Application Form when applications are being accepted.

Program Timeline



  • Enroll in the weekly CDSJ Scholars Program 2-unit Honors Collegium (HC 193A)
  • Attend weekly one-on-one meetings with the CDSJ Program Coordinator
  • Attend weekly group meetings
  • Learn the nuts & bolts of graduate or professional school application
  • Develop a research proposal and identify an internship site for Spring Quarter


  • Enroll in a 2-unit Civic Engagement 95 course and complete a 40-hour internship at a community site
  • Attend weekly one-on-one meetings with CDSJ Program Coordinator
  • Attend weekly group meetings
  • Develop a small-scale applied research project based on internship experience
  • Present research at the annual UCLA Undergraduate Research Week
  • Receive a stipend upon successful completion of the program

For More Information

RSVP to an info session by using the AAP Graduate Mentoring Workshops Registration Form.


Contact Cohort Coordinator Diana Alfaro,


An image of the previous 2019 - 2020 Carter Huggins Community Development and Social Justice Cohort smiling together indoors.

2019-2020 Carter Huggins Community Development and Social Justice Cohort: Eduardo Solis De Luna, Guadalupe Guzman Argueta, Isel Ramirez, Joseph Ruiz, Leslie Hwang, Linda Maria Arroyo, Maggie Peña, Nayra Gil, Ngoc Thi Hong Nguyen and Odalis Espinoza-Echeverria. 
An image of the 2020 - 2021 Carter Huggins Community Development And Social Justice Cohort taken over Zoom.

2020-2021 Cohort (in alphabetical order): Yesenia Aguilar, Vanessa Valdez Cruz, Jacqueline Iniguez, Nisha Joseph, Linda Mitchell, Adeline Padilla, Victoria Rosas, Alma Ricongallardo, Ita Ayuso Velasco