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Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies wins Tinker Field Research Grant

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies has received a prestigious grant from the Tinker Foundation to fund graduate student research in Latin America.

The $15,000 per year grant, in combination with a 1:1 KU match, provides a total of $90,000 in grant funding for graduate student research in Latin America over the next three years. This will provide 15-20 KU graduate students each year with small grants that will enable them to enhance their research projects with real on-the-ground experience in their focus countries.

The Tinker Foundation, which promotes sustainability, equity and productivity in Latin America and greater understanding of the region in the United States, has supported the Center in the past with Field Research Grants, from 1996-1998, 2001-2004 and 2008-2011. The Foundation requires that grantees wait two years after the end of each grant period before applying again. During each of the previous Tinker funding periods, at least 60 graduate students were funded for short-term research abroad. These students went on to develop superior research proposals for external funding based on their time in the field as well as superior dissertations and theses. Many are now faculty members themselves, while others have successful careers in private industry, the nonprofit sector, and government service.

Tinker recipients often pursue projects related to public health, conservation, community development, anthropology, culture and education. Project sites may range from the Southern Cone to the Caribbean Islands, and from countries in Central America to the border regions of Mexico.

“Tinker Field Research Grants let graduate students go where they’ve never gone before,” said Center Director Jill Kuhnheim. “Our past experience makes it clear that they find the opportunity to make contacts and conduct exploratory research in the field a life-transforming experience. Our past Tinker fellows have distinguished themselves in national competitions for larger research grants and on the job market. Many go on to dedicate their lives to Latin American issues.”

The competition for Tinker Field Research Grants will be open to all KU graduate students whose studies focus on Latin American topics, regardless of their disciplines. The Center will send an announcement to graduate advisers when the application instructions and deadline are posted. Students who wish to apply may begin by visiting the Center’s Graduate Funding Page or contacting the Center at (785) 864-4213 or latamst@ku.edu.