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Sixteen Illinois Students Awarded Graduate College Travel Grants

The Graduate College is pleased to announce the awardees of the Spring 2017 Dissertation Travel Grant and Master’s Project Travel Grant. With the help of these Travel Grants, students have the opportunity to conduct dissertation research or complete master’s projects in destinations across the world. Twenty-five departments from across campus submitted a total of 42 nominations and, of those, 16 nominations from 13 departments were selected for awards.  

2017 Dissertation Travel Grant Awardees, including program and destination:

  • Caroline Wisler (Landscape Architecture) - Stolac, Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Darshi Banan (Plant Biology) - Donald Danforth Plant Science Center in St. Louis, Missouri
  • Diana Byrne (Civil & Environmental Engineering) - Nikivale Refugee Settlement in Nikivale, Uganda
  • Elizabeth Matsushita (History) - Le Centre des Musiques Arabes et Méditerranéennes in Tunis, Tunisia
  • Halie Rando (Informatics) - University of Uppsala in Uppsala, Sweden
  • Jacob Minniear (Curriculum & Instruction) - Istanbul, Turkey
  • Jessica Fitt (Psychology) - Njala University - Njala, Sierra Leone
  • Jonathan Smith (Music) - Multiple Sacred Harp music archives in California, Tennessee, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, & Australia
  • Katharine Lee (Anthropology) - Mogielica Human Ecology Study Site in Poland
  • Koji Ito (History) - National Archives in Washington, DC
  • Miles Bensky (Ecology, Evolution, & Conservative Biology) - Multiple freshwater sites in Anchorage, Alaska
  • Nicole Turnipseed (English) - Metro Academies College Success Program in San Francisco, California
  • Tanya Josek (Entomology) - University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh and Notre Dame University

2017 Master’s Travel Grant Awardees, including program and destination:

  • Andrew Rodriguez (Music) - Charlotte New Music Festival in Charlotte, NC
  • Matthew Safford (Entomology) - Paul Wightman Subterranean Nature Preserve in Monroe County, IL
  • Ryan Keeling (Geography & Geographic Information Science) - Sullivan Creek Watershed in Metaline, WA

Ken Vickery, Director of Fellowships says, “It’s exciting to see the range of research locations to which Travel Grant recipients are going this year, with sites throughout the US and as far away as Uganda, Poland, and Australia. Funding for travel is often difficult for graduate students to obtain, and this results in our receiving a large number of nominations, almost all of which are excellent. The ones that the Fellowship Board selected for awards are truly outstanding, and I hope that the grants will offer a significant contribution to the awardees’ projects.”

Dissertation Travel Grants provide reimbursement to subsidize travel and associated costs necessary for doctoral dissertation research, whether for exploring a potential dissertation topic or for conducting dissertation research. Students must be nominated by their department, and departments may nominate up to three students each. Grants are awarded at amounts up to $5,000. 

Master’s Project Travel Grants provide reimbursement to Illinois students for travel-related costs incurred for the completion of an off-campus, short-term project required of one of the University’s master’s degree programs. Students must be nominated by their department, and departments may nominate up to three students each. Grants are awarded at amounts up to $500. 

The competition included two stages of review. Each nomination was first reviewed by one of the Fellowship Board’s four Area Committees, then finalists were reviewed by the Executive Committee.  Each Area Committee is comprised exclusively of faculty members; the Executive Committee is comprised of faculty along with two graduate students. 

For more information about these awards visit the listings in the Graduate College’s Fellowship Finder database.