Global Fund project grants awarded

Madeleine Stix ‘12 (right), an International and Global Studies major, works with client at Waltham Alliance to Create Housing.

A new journal of creative writing and artwork produced by returned study abroad students. A collaborative partnership with a university in Ghana. A new experiential learning practicum that matches Brandeis students with Waltham immigrants. A research project on cross-cultural psychological attention levels with a university in Turkey.

These are the four projects selected to receive Global Brandeis Fund seed grants, which total around $8,000 for calendar year 2011.

The fund, administered by the Office of Global Affairs with support from the Office of the Provost, was established in 2007 to encourage a collaborative, interdisciplinary approach to international engagement and education at Brandeis. Since then, several of the original projects have developed into multi-year endeavors.

This year's awards center on teaching and learning initiatives. Students, faculty, staff and alumni were all eligible to apply as part of project teams, with grants ranging from $500 to $3000. Teams agree to complete a project over the spring and fall 2011 semesters, and to use these projects as the foundations for pursuing long-term goals. The grants were decided by a small selection committee of faculty, staff, and students.

These are the four projects selected to receive grants:

  • An immigrant support practicum. This two-credit experiential learning practicum for undergraduate students is likely to be added to several Brandeis courses in 2011-12. The practicum will match Brandeis students with Waltham immigrants, allowing the students to understand some of the social and legal challenges faced by the immigrant population as well as the diversity of that group. The practicum will also involve training on cross-cultural analysis and communication. It is being headed by Audra Grady, the administrator for experiential learning, in cooperation with faculty, staff and students.
  • A study abroad student journal. This  will feature original writing, artwork, and photographs by students who are studying abroad or have recently returned. The journal will include a print as well as online version, and is being developed by Jacob Laband '12, Samuel Icaza '12, Jesse Appell '12, and Destiny Aquino '13, with assistance from the Office of Study Abroad.
  • A collaborative partnership in global health.  This project is being developed by a Brandeis alumnus, Karen Duca (Ph.D. '98 in biophysics), who is currently an associate professor in the department of biochemistry and biotechnology at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in Ghana. Duca aims to establish a joint workshop and possible student and faculty research collaborations on global health and development solutions, framed from a West African perspective. In doing so, she will be re-connecting with her former advisers and colleagues at Brandeis.
  • A research project on cross-cultural differences in levels of attention and attention spans. Psychology Prof. Angela Gutchess will partner with a Turkish faculty member at Bogazici University in Istanbul in one of the first studies comparing Turkish  and Western populations. The project builds on Gutchess' fall semester as a Fulbright Scholar in Istanbul. It will involve undergraduate students from several majors and a campus round-table discussion.

For more information on the Global Brandeis Fund, see or contact

Categories: Humanities and Social Sciences, International Affairs

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