Campus & Community

Rockefeller Center awards research grants

long read

The David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies (DRCLAS) has awarded 55 research grants and 60 internship grants to Harvard undergraduate and graduate students who will spend the summer conducting research and working in a variety of public, private, and independent-sector internships in the region. The grant recipients include students from 21 different concentrations at Harvard College and seven graduate and professional schools, including the Schools of Design, Divinity, Education, Government, Medicine, Public Health, and the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. Harvard students will receive approximately $175,000 in funding to spend the summer in 20 countries, as well as various locales in the United States.

Research grants totaling $99,000 were awarded to 29 undergraduates and 27 graduate students for projects ranging from an examination of daily life in Brazil through performance study, to a review of legal documents to develop a sense of the history of the U.S.-Mexico border region. The center was able to greatly increase the number of graduate student research grants this year through a $15,000 matching grant from the Tinker Foundation.

Because most of the internships which students pursue are on a volunteer basis the center also offers internship travel grants that provide partial funding for basic travel and living expenses incurred during the summer abroad. Nearly $75,000 was distributed this year among the 60 internship grant recipients to support their summer projects.

This year’s recipients:

Anne-Carmene Almonord ’03, history and literature, Martinique: a collection of women’s oral histories and the study of their relationship to local politics.

Jennifer Altarriba ’03, history and literature, Cuba: “Defining the 20th Century Cuban Revolution: An analysis of the sociopolitical effects of 1959 through Cuban and Cuban Exile literature of the 1990’s.”

Marcel Anderson ’03, social studies, Cuba: “The Roots, Development, and Implications of Jinetero-Rastafarianism in Cuba.”

Jennifer Austin ’03, social anthropology, Spain: a study of the constructed vision of the dictatorship years in Spain through present-day politically affiliated news sources.

Shelby Braxton-Brooks ’03, performance studies, Brazil: a study of the interlocking of daily activities and performance in Brazil through participation and observation.

Megan Buckingham ’03, visual and environmental studies, Brazil: will film and produce a documentary video on Vidigal, a favela of Rio de Janeiro.

Justin Erlich ’03, government, Haiti: investigation of the feasibility of incorporating conflict mediation models into formal Haitian justice mechanism, particularly in rural communities.

Carlos Garza ’03, government, United States/Mexico: a comparison study of the border communities of San Diego/Tijuana and Brownsville/Matamoros, specifying on cross-border governmental interactions.

Natalia Jose Truszkowska ’03, women’s studies, literature, Spain: investigation of women’s relationship to Spain’s bullfighting tradition.

Stefan Kenel-Pierre ’03, anthropology, Haiti: An examination of the peculiar treatment of returning diasporic people by Haitian nationals.

Nicole Legnani ’03, Romance languages and literatures, Peru: a bilingual education program design for Cuidad Gosen, Lima: Redefining urban and indigenous identities in the Peruvian capital.

Alicia Llosa ’03, social studies, Peru: an investigation of the impact of British and Chinese immigrants on the development of Peruvian nationalism.

Alejandro Mares’03, social studies, Mexico: a study through labor organization and international trade lineage of prospects for Mexico’s democratic transition.

Carla Martin ’03, anthropology, United States: an examination of the diverse social movement surrounding the debate on bilingual education, specifically in regards to the Portuguese-speaking populations of Massachusetts.

Page McClean ’03, anthropology, Spain: fieldwork with Ecuadorian immigrants, looking at physical and symbolic community building.

Lindsey McCormack ’03, history and literature, Bolivia: an examination of the literature of Warisata, an education movement in Bolivia in the 1930s.

Ina Mogollon ’03, government, Colombia: an examination of the relationship between grassroots political organizations and state government in Colombian agrarian reforms.

Catherine Philips ’03, history, Spain: will research the historical memory of Spanish Civil War refugees in French concentration camps, 1939 to 1945.

Scott Rechler ’03, anthropology, Chile: to understand grassroots environmental development initiatives in southern Chile with regards to their community impact and their relationship with external “empowerment” structures.

Andrew Reider ’03, economics, Brazil: will travel to Brazil’s three main cities to investigate the “Brazil cost,” the extra cost of doing business in Brazil.

Petra Rivera ’03, Afro-American studies, Cuba: will study feminine images in the Afro-Cuban religion, Santeria, particularly around the cult of the Yemaya and Ochun gods.

Chris Roma-Aguanian ’03, Afro-American studies, Spain/United States: will acquire data in order to compare Dominican migration to Spain and to the United States.

Julie Rosenberg ’03, anthropology, Peru: an anthropological inquiry into the effect of stigma on illness experience and treatment outcome for multiple-drug-resistant tuberculosis patients.

Katherine Russo ’03, anthropology, Spain: an examination of how media representations of female bullfighters affect a traditionally male-dominated sport and reconstitute gendered identities in contemporary Spanish culture.

Kimberly Sanchez ’03, anthropology, Argentina: a comparison of the total fertility rates of rural versus urban Toba women in Formosa.

Meghan Scheding ’03, environmental science and public policy, Costa Rica: an investigation of the ecological, social, economic, and cultural impacts of sustainable development and eco-tourist projects on the Piedras Blancas National Park.

Taylor Terry ’03, social studies, Ukraine: comparative study of social economic effects of urban agriculture in Havana and Kiev.

Joel Thomas ’03, government, Cuba: interviews and secondary research in order to investigate the framework that motivates the Cuban Health system.

Chafen Watkins ’03, government, Mexico: gauge how informal sector organization impacts political participation among Mexican women.

This year’s graduate research grant recipients, along with their field of study, travel destination, and projects, are as follows:

Nava Ashraf, economics, Mexico: an evaluation of the impact of corn trade liberalization under NAFTA on rural poverty in Mexico.

Kim Beauchesne, Romance languages and literature, Peru: an in-depth study of the cultural mentalities, epistemologies, and social imaginary of the Spanish and French chroniclers who explored the Amazon between the16th and 18th centuries.

Isaac Campos-Costero, history, United States: an investigation of the archival materials in Washington D.C., Austin, Texas, and San Francisco, for dissertation on the history of marijuana in Mexico.

Felipe Correa, Graduate School of Design, Ecuador: will investigate and document Quito’s defensive topography and its negotiation with urban settlement.

Cristina de la Torre, School of Public Health, Mexico: will examine factors that contribute to high levels of unwanted pregnancies in Mexico.

Simona Deutsch, Medical School, Cuba: ethnographic research of the HIV-positive patients living at the Santiago de las Vegas sanatorium.

Oliver Dinius, history, Brazil: will study the history of the formation of a Brazilian technocracy in the 20th century.

Carrie Endries, history, United States: will perform archival research in New York and Washington, D.C., on German refugees in Brazil.

Daniel Gutierrez, history, Mexico: analysis of political conflicts in 19th century Mexico, especially the relationship between Zacatecas and the national government.

Sarah Jackson, anthropology, Guatemala: will conduct an analysis of excavated materials to correlate architectural functions with Maya nonroyal elite roles.

Alison Kidwell, history, Brazil: will explore how working people managed their financial lives in Rio de Janeiro from 1870 to 1945.

Felicia Lugo, history of art and architecture, Puerto Rico: will examine architectural sites and art institutions of Puerto Rico for preliminary dissertation generals research.

Juan Pablo Lupi, comparative literature, Cuba: will study archival materials related to the Cuban poet, Jose Lezama Lima.

Aaron Navarro, history, United States: will consult national archives to complement dissertation research on “Political Intelligence: Opposition, Parties, and the Military in Mexico, 1938 to 1954.”

Shannon O’Neil Trowbridge, government, Mexico/Chile: an analysis of the impact of social security reforms on social organization and participation in Latin America.

Caroline Parker, School of Education, Nicaragua: will explore youth understanding of attending or dropping out of Managua secondary schools.

Rachelle Pierre, Medical School, Haiti: will analyze the effectiveness of syphilis screening into an HIV voluntary counseling and testing center.

Silvia Romero Contreras, School of Education, Mexico: will explore how low socioeconomic status (SES) Mexican Spanish speaking families support early literacy development.

Anadelia Romo, history, France: will conduct research on a prominent Brazilian educator and his perspectives on race through his correspondence with UNESCO.

Hillel Soifer, government, Peru: a study of state-building by Chile and Peru in the Arica/Tacna region.

William Suarez-Potts, history, Mexico: research on Supreme Court archives of significant labor cases between 1870 and 1934.

Allison Tirres, history, Mexico/United States: will research legal and other primary source material for her dissertation in history, focusing on the legal history of the border region.

Nirav Vakharia, Medical School, Peru: determining why and when Quechuan TB patients may seek traditional cures in addition to Directly Observed Treatment Short (DOTS treatment).

Alexandra Vega Merino, Romance languages and literature, Cuba:

A study of the institutional connections between Puerto Rico and Cuba’s film industries; as well as research on the reflexive cinema of Juan Carlos Tabio.

Paloma Visscher, School of Education, Peru: an association between sibling care-taking activities and pro-social development in a Quechua village near Cuzco.

Michael Westerhaus, Medical School, Peru: determining why and when Quechuan TB patients may seek traditional cures in addition to Directly Observed Treatment Short (DOTS treatment).

Kasumi Yamashita, education, Brazil: an analysis of films and archival material related to Japanese emigration to Brazil; oral history project with Japanese immigrants and their descendants in Brazil.

This year’s undergraduate internship grant recipients, along with their field of study, travel destination, and research projects, are as follows:

Dede Miishe Addy ’03, philosophy, Bolivia: will research the economic and social impact of Pro Mujer, Bolivia’s micro-finance programs.

Leah Aylward ’05, environmental science and public policy, Guatemala: will work with Friends of PASAC Segundo focusing on educational and environmental issues.

Jonathan Bloom ’04, mathematics, Chile: teaching English and math in Vina del Mar.

Jacob Bor ’05, social studies, Mexico: Partners in Health Organization in Chiapas.

Rebecca Cantu ’04, government, El Salvador: writing case studies and short summaries on projects for CREA International de El Salvador with the Citizen Participation and Governance Project.

Juliana Chow ’05, English and American literature, Chile: will intern at the Program de Políticas Públicas en la Pontífica Universidad Católica de Chile where she will help organize projects and facilitate communication between the institution and Harvard.

Andrew Clark ’03, economics, Chile: will do research for Asset Chile, a small financial advisory firm.

Andrew Conrad ’05, undecided, Ecuador: will work at CONFENIAE, an umbrella organization that ties together a number of local activist groups and Native Ecuadorian tribes.

Edward Couch ’05, government, Mexico: will learn about Mexican culture and gain experience in the field of journalism through an internship at El Universal.

Abby Enscoe ’03, physics, Peru: will volunteer with PlanFami, with particular focus on community outreach in Arequipa.

Anna Evans ’04, history, Mexico: will travel to Mexico to help a nonprofit organization that works for growth and development.

Caitlin Fisher ’04, sociology, Peru: will volunteer at a center for women in a shantytown in Lima. She will work with women and children, concentrating on cultural and female empowerment.

Jonathan Fuentes ’03, government, United States: will work with LULAC, the League of United Latin American Citizens in Austin, Texas.

Rocio Garza ’05, Romance languages and literatures, Mexico: will work at the Ministry of Economic Development in Puebla.

Christina Givey ’05, anthropology, Peru: will assist therapists in providing therapy to children with learning disabilities at Fundación Antonio Felipe Custer.

Thea Johnson ’03, history, Ecuador: will teach with World Teach on the Galapagos Islands and focus on eco-tourism.

Magda Kowalczykowski ’03, government, Peru: will intern at CARE, an organization that focuses on sustainable development and emergency aid.

Adriana Lafaille ’04, Latin American studies, Brazil: will intern at a municipal education office of Diadema, an industrial city outside Saõ Paulo.

Miranda Lash ’03, history of art and architecture, United States: will work in California at the Latin American Art Galleries at LACMA West in Los Angeles.

Zach Liscow ’05, environmental science and public policy, Nicaragua: will work for Prolena, a sustainable development NGO in Nicaragua and help to market the Ecostove.

Ruben Marinelarena ’03, government, United States: will intern at the U.S. Department of State in the Western Hemispheric Project in Washington, D.C.

Verena Martinez ’05, mathematics, Chile: study of spatial segregation of certain groups in Santiago.

Tiffany McNair ’03, history and science, Mexico: will intern at CASA, a health and educational outreach nongovernment organization in San Miguel de Allende.

Aaron Mihaly ’05, government, Argentina: will assist public policy reform staff with research, organization, communication, and advocacy.

Shannon Music ’03, psychology, Brazil: will intern at Ethos Institute of Business and Social Responsibility, an association of private companies interested in developing their activities in a socially responsible manner.

Elizabeth Street Niemiec ’04, environmental science and public policy, Peru: will work with Ecoteatro in Lima schools, using theater to educate about the environment.

Samantha Piper ’03, neurobiology, Mexico: will assist the Centro Ecologico Akumal in protecting the Grant and Loggerhead sea turtles, as well as their nesting beaches.

Addison Quale ’03, economics, Brazil: will volunteer with Food for the Hungry International in Curitiba, teaching English and distributing food.

Elizabeth Quinn ’03, English and American literature, Mexico: will intern at the Centro para Los Adolescentes de San Miguel de Allende (CASA).

Jennifer Rodriguez ’03, government, United States: will work with the Migrant Farm Worker Justice Project to educate exploited female farm workers as to available legal protection.

Jessi Rokicki ’03, history of science, Costa Rica: Documenting native healing practices, assisting local Red Cross at the Costa Rican Humanitarian Foundation.

Jaclyn Shull ’04, government, Nicaragua: will intern at the Foundation for Sustainable Development in issues related to human rights, youth enrichment, and indigenous communities.

Chelsey Tanaka ’04, anthropology, Guatemala: will work with Pasac Segundo on improving their educational and developmental initiatives.

Theodora Textor ’03, government, Honduras: will intern in the economic division of the U.S. Embassy in Tegucigalpa.

This year’s graduate internship grant recipients, along with their field of study, travel destination, and research projects, are as follows:

Lindsey Allard, School of Education, United States: will intern at the Organization of American States working on education policy in Latin America.

Katherine Attanasi, Divinity School, Ecuador: Freedom Valley Foundation will help the organization better to meet the needs of the community.

David Baharvar, Law School, Bolivia: will work at the Assamblea Permanente de Derechos Humanos de Bolivia.

Romina Bandura, Kennedy School of Government, United States: will intern in the OAS Unit for Social Development and Education to contribute to the development and improvement of Latin American countries in terms of their labor, social, and educational policies.

Michelle Benger, Medical School, Guatemala: will intern at the medical clinic of NGO Proyecto Ak’ Tenamit, serving indigenous community in Guatemalan rainforests.

Luther Carter, Kennedy School of Government, Brazil: will intern at the U.S. Embassy in Brasilia.

Erin Hasselberg, School of Public Health, Mexico: will conduct evaluation of the Gente Joven Program in five Mexican states through MexFam organization in Mexico City.

Jenny Jacobs, School of Education, Mexico: technical support and research regarding development of new educational programs for indigenous migrants.

Adriana Katzew, School of Education, United States: will intern at the Organization of American States working on culture and cultural diversity, and their intersection with education.

Ines Kudo, Kennedy School of Government, United States: will work for the consolidation of intercultural education that responds to indigenous realities, promotes social justice, and builds peace.

Mark Lopes, Kennedy School of Government, Dominican Republic: will conduct research and facilitate regional workshop on sustainable rural tele-centers for use in rural education.

Emilio Lozoya Austin, Kennedy School of Government, United States: will study the readiness to use information technology to address social development at the Center for International Development.

David Merril, Harvard Medical School, Guatemala: will intern at medical clinic of NGO Proyecto Ak’ Tenamit, serving indigenous community in Guatemalan rainforests.

Luzma Moreno, School of Education, United States: will work at the Organization of American States, to build bridges between the policies and social needs in the grassroots level.

Barnaby Olson, Kennedy School of Government, Honduras/Dominican Republic: will help Soluz, Inc. demonstrate the viability of solar energy for communities in Latin America.

Andy Ragatz, Kennedy School of Government, United States: will study the readiness to use information technology to address social development in Latin America for the Center for International Development.

Raquel Reyes, Kennedy School of Government, Dominican Republic: will work for INSALUD, the primary public health policy organization in the Dominican Republic.

Camila Rodriguez, Kennedy School of Government, Chile: will provide technical assistance in the revision of program evaluation reports by focusing on the appropriate use of impact evaluation methodologies at the Ministry of Finance.

Kendrinna Rodriguez, Kennedy School of Government, Mexico: will develop and evaluate projects aimed at improving social development in areas such as education, health, and nutrition at the Comunidad A.C.

Alexandra Schlegel, Kennedy School of Government, Dominican Republic: will assess the state of children and education in the Dominican Republic for the Center for International Development.

Valentina Sequi, Kennedy School of Government, Peru: will intern at Small Enterprise Assistance Funds.

Ernesto Treviño, School of Education, Chile: will research the educational innovations and policies in Latin America for UNESCO.

German Treviño, School of Education, United States: will be an associate staff member at OAS, conducting research on the Latin American educational system and enhancing horizontal relationships with member states.

Paul Wassenich, Kennedy School of Government, Dominican Republic: will produce a section of a comprehensive report on status education.