The application process for the Barrett Global Explorers Grant is rigorous, but the reward is great.
Only students of Barrett, The Honors College of Arizona State University are eligible to apply for the Barrett Global Explorers Grant (BGEG), an award of up to $7,500 that supports globally-focused summer research leading to honors work .
The fellowship provides Barrett Juniors with funds to undertake a research project in multiple countries of their own design, build global connections and increase their understanding of world issues.
The award is open to well-respected Barrett students who have at least one semester of undergraduate studies after summer 2023 and will defend their honors thesis in fall 2023 or spring 2024.
Applicants must first submit an acceptance prospectus and meet with an advisor at the Lorraine W. Frank Office of National Scholarships Advice (ONSA) by December 1.
Applicants must submit a three to five page proposal describing an international research project spanning at least two countries by February 1, 2023. A committee of Barrett faculty members then selects the five strongest applications, which must be developed into five- to eight-page proposals and 10-minute oral presentations. Students selected for the scholarship must plan to begin their trip no earlier than May 10, 2023 and complete it before the start of the fall semester.
Kyle Mox, director of ONSA, said the selection committee is particularly interested in proposals that demonstrate high academic merit and attention to ASU’s commitment to social inclusion and Barrett’s interest in global initiatives. Students must also demonstrate a strong interest in international travel and the strength to travel independently to complete their research.
“Successful proposals have woven together the university’s mission for global engagement and community solutions, as well as students’ cultural awareness and adaptability. We are looking for students who can travel internationally to bring their insights and talents to problem-solving research on a global scale,” said Mox.
In recent years, the BGEG has supported research by students in many areas, including citrus cultivation on three continents, human-wildlife interaction in Thailand, Australia, Nepal, South Africa and Colombia, and support for sex trafficking survivors in Ireland, France, Spain, Ghana and South Korea.
The youngest winners were Valeria Perez and Kallee Schwan. Schwann has traveled to both Costa Rica and the Dominican Republic to study the healthcare provided to victims of human trafficking in their respective countries. To create connections in both locations, she worked with HealEx, an international organization dedicated to bridging the gap between healthcare and victims of human trafficking.
Schwann had to demonstrate unusual adaptability in the implementation of her project.
“My initial project was to include a comparison of the implementation of trauma-informed care between Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 2 watchlist countries,” she said. “But due to the limited contacts available, I made the switch to do a comparison between two Tier 2 countries – Costa Rica and the Dominican Republic. This switch was more sensible to avoid comparing ‘apples to oranges’ based on some of their similarities, and it fits better with the budget,” she said.
For her project, Perez conducted research on pregnant women’s prospects for the COVID-19 pandemic in Mexico in relation to government containment efforts.
She traveled to public and private hospitals in Guadalajara and Mexico City to survey and interview study participants.
Perez certifies the value of the on-site research supported by the BGEG. “Many months of preparation and background research paled in comparison to a single month of field research,” she said.
“Having the opportunity to speak face-to-face with these women gave me so much more than the answer to my research question. It ultimately gave me a deeper understanding of their situations, frustrations, and expectations, among many other things. I’m incredibly excited to continue delving into my data and turning it into programs that can benefit these communities.”
Both Schwan and Perez will incorporate their research into their Barrett honors papers, which they will complete and defend this year.
For more information on the Barrett Global Explorers Grant, click here.