The University of the Fraser Valley’s new Peace and Reconciliation Centre has awarded the first of its unique new fellowships and grants (totalling $30,000) available to scholars, students, and community members.
Political Science department head Fiona MacDonald has received a Linking Fellowship for Visiting Scholars to collaborate with a research partner from New Zealand on a project focused on developing a restorative approach in Canadian healthcare systems.
The Peace and Reconciliation Centre (PARC) invites applications for funding in a variety of categories. The funds are not just for UFV faculty and students. Several are designed for visiting scholars, community intellectuals/activists/artists, guest speakers, and special events. Each is designed to spark new research and new ways of examining the important issues confronting us today.
“Through our centre we want to respond to community voices, faculty interest, and student priorities,” said Dr. Keith Carlson, PARC chair. “We are not here simply to provide answers, but to listen to the questions and then co-create answers together.”
PARC was founded in April 2020. Funds available for student and community applications include:
Student Catalyst Scholarship — $1,500
To support a mentoring partnership between a UFV faculty member and a UFV student with the objective of composing a work of collaborative scholarship for submission as a jointly authored article/chapter.
“It will go beyond being a research assistant and empower students to become a junior author in a mentored research study,” Carlson said.
Eligibility: All UFV students are eligible, but only applications sponsored by a UFV faculty member who commits to mentoring and partnering with the student will be considered.
Digital Storytelling Student Scholarship — $400
Designed to bring UFV students and non-academic knowledge keepers together to share, record, and communicate digital stories so that these stories and the life experience they represent will be accessible to others into the future.
“This scholarship will encourage students to use digital methodology to tell life stories,” Carlson said.
There is also a fellowship available to community members.
Fellowship for Community-based Intellectuals/Activists/Artists — $1,500
Designed to support the scholarly and/or artistic activities of intellectuals/artists/activists who are based in their communities (such as Indigenous knowledge keepers, religious/spiritual/faith community leaders, social justice activists, practitioners, NGO leaders, and independent artists, etc.) to allow them to collaborate with a UFV faculty member or academic unit on either a creative scholarly and/or artistic project, or a major grant application.
Carlson said he wants PARC to be an open and accessible centre for all voices, where everyone feels welcome and takes ownership, and added the issues that become priorities for the centre can be either local or global in nature.
“It can be anything related to peace and reconciliation that faculty, students, or the community are interested in. The goal is to be responsive and to help empower UFV faculty and students to work with partners to identify the causes of conflicts and then to together find pathways to reconciliation and peace.”
PARC will only be successful it if is responsive to the needs of communities and provides “a space for learning and a space to spark and launch conversations and research,” he added.
PARC’s steering committee is made up of UFV faculty, staff, students, and members of diverse communities and organizations from throughout the Fraser Valley including co-chair Benji Vanderpol, Stó:lō Grand Chief Clarence “Kat” Pennier, and Fran Vanderpol, among others. The Oikodome Foundation, run by the Vanderpol family, is a major funder of PARC. The support of the foundation enabled the creation of the special funds and scholarships.
To find out more about funding opportunities offered by the Peace and Reconciliation Centre, including funding for faculty, visit: https://www.ufv.ca/peace-and-reconciliation/funding-scholarships/.