Student Research


Latin American Studies Research Award

Established in 2000 by the Latin American Studies Committee, and funded by the office of the Dean for Academic Affairs, the LAS Research Award Program supports student research in Mexico, Central or South America, the Caribbean, or on Latinos and Latinas in the United States. The awards are intended to increase understanding and awareness of the region among sophomores and juniors majoring in any academic discipline. The on-site research can be conducted after July 1 during the summer months, between semesters, or to extend off-campus study experiences. Funds are available for travel, room and board, and research expenses up to a maximum of $3000.

To apply for a Latin American Studies Research Award, click here >

You may read previous grant awardees’ reports here >

2014 Recipients

This year Latin American Studies Research Awards were given to Leo Shaw (2015) and Natasha Soto (2015).
  natasha soto photo
Leo Shaw photoLeo’s project, "Contested Visions of Modernity: Architects and Urban Planning in Turn-of-the-Century Buenos Aires", will be researched over the summer in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where Leo will study the debates that decided which urban planning and architectural projects would transform Buenos Aires into what commentators called the "Paris of South America".

Natasha’s project, "Voluntourism: Group Home for Teenage Mothers as a Contact Zone", will send Natasha to Cusco, Peru to study service and tourism concepts of sexuality, gender, and care in Latin America.


2013 Recipients

Chris Robleto (2014) conducted research in Nicaragua during the summer of 2013 under the mentorship of Prof. Greg Beckett (Anthropology). Chris’ project is entitled, “Narratives of Nationalism in Nicaragua: A Multi-Level study of Nationalism in Managua, Bilwi, and Bluefields.”

Elizabeth González (2015) conducted research in Bogotá, Colombia under the mentorship of Professor Nadia Celis (Spanish). Her project is entitled, “Prostitution and ‘narcocultura’: Violence, Sexuality, and Beauty in Colombia.”

The John Harold Turner Prize in Latin American Studies

Named after Professor Emeritus John H. Turner, this prize is awarded to a graduating Latin American Studies major who, in the judgment of the Program's Faculty, has demonstrated outstanding academic achievement based on coursework in the major, as indicated by academic record, and/or independent research in an Honors Project or Independent Study.

In 2014 the John Harold Turner Senior Prize in Latin American Studies was awarded to Georgia Whitaker. Georgia Whitaker photo

Georgia was also awarded the James E. Bland Prize in History for her honors thesis, “Reconsidering Operation Condor: Cross-border Military Cooperation and the Defeat of the Transnational Left in Chile and Argentina during the 1970s”.  In this study of the roots of Operation Condor, Georgia tracks the development of this unusual military alliance forged by six Southern Cone governments (Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Uruguay, and Paraguay) during the 1970s, as well as the push-and-pull relationship between the transnational migration of political militants and the military’s impetus for collaboration. While most accounts of Condor focus on the U. S. as the operation’s primary orchestrator, she contends that initial motivation for the type of cooperation that Condor would later formalize was driven not by the U.S., but by the Southern Cone militaries’ perception that Marxism had to be excised from the entire region. In addition, while Condor scholars have either ignored or minimized the role of the left as political actors and placed the blame for violence exclusively on the militaries and the U. S., she argues that it is essential to broaden our understanding of what both sides in this ideological confrontation were attempting to accomplish.


Exploring Issues in Latin American Studies with the Global Citizens Grant

The Global Citizens Grant, initiated in 2007 by Willy Oppenheim ’09, and awarded through the McKeen Center for the Common Good, provides Bowdoin students travel funding to spend 8-10 weeks learning about issues such as public health, elder and disability rights, education and environmental sustainability through serving with grassroots organizations outside of the United States. Since the grant’s inception, eight recipients have worked with organizations in Latin America, building on their experiences through academic and service work on their return.

This year's Global Citizen is Meredith Outterson, '17.  For more information on Meredith and her work in Nicaragua, please visit the Global Citizen Grant Recipient page

Information on previous recipients of the Glabal Citizen Grant can be found here.

Jae Lee '06

With the support of the LAS Research Grant, Jae Lee '06 collected on-site information for her Honors thesis, "De Coreano a Coreguayo: The Korean-Paraguayan Community, 1964-2005."

See other examples »