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UTSA Mexico Center Research Fellowships
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The UTSA Mexico Center has established a grant to provide assistance with travel costs for joint student/faculty research projects that need time in Mexico to do field work or consultation at a university or research center. These awards are given out once a year. Award winners have one year to finish the project and present a final paper. The UTSA Mexico Center requests copies of the finished work and a presentation of the research project at a UTSA Mexico Center Brown Bag lecture.

Previous Award Winners:

Fall 2009

Michelle Dart and Dr. Rosalind Horowitz

Status at UTSA - Michelle Dart, M.A. Graduate Student, UTSA: Dr. Rosalin Horowitz, Professor, UTSA ILT-COEHD

Project Title - Border Literacy: Identify Confrontations and Realignments of Highly Engaged Adolescent Learners

Summary - This study is part of a larger research project on Border Literacy that examines social-contextual factors, geographic mobility, and identity shifts that contribute to the text choices and motivations for academic learning of adolescents who live on the Texas-Mexico border. The Border/La Frontera is a major theme that theorists and researchers have addressed as space where identities are at points of cultural contact and cognitive reconfiguration (Moje, 2004, Saldivar, 1997).

Across the nation, there as been growing attention to "high school drop out factories" a phrase coined by Robert Balfanz (2007), Johns Hopkins University Research Scientist, and the limited aspiration of adolescents have been scientifically studied by a Stanford University Researcher (Damon, 2008). However, there is little research that describes the psychological conflicts and realignments of Mexican-American adolescents who are highly mobile and highly literate. This proposal is one of the first such studies.

 

Miguel Flores and Nazrul Hoque

Status at UTSA - Miguel Flores, PhD Student, UTSA Department of Demography: Nazrul Hogue, Associate Professor, UTSA Department of Demography

Project Title - "Measuring the Impact of International Migration to U.S. on the Regional Economic Development in Mexican Municipalities"

Summary - The purpose of this project is to examine and try to quantify the impact that emigrants had on the regions where they left. The evidence on this topic is little and most of the literature is devoted to measure the impact of the immigrants on the regions where they arrive. The reason of this is because the impossibility to have information of those who are not longer present in the regions under study. The relevance of the results of this study will contribute to widen the understanding of the effect that the increasing number of people leaving in the country has on the regions they left. The U.S. Census disclosed that in 2000  estimated Mexican-born population was 9.17 million, from this total 23% arrived before 1980; 28% entered during the period 1980-1990; while the rest, nearly 50% of the residents arrived during 1990-2000.

This project is interested in providing new evidence regarding the relationship between the levels of migration to U.S. in Mexican municipalities upon several measures of economic development. Particularly, we will estimate the effect on schooling levels and the impact on wages. In doing this, a relatively new technique that accounts for the specific geographical localization of each municipality. The technique proposed is called Geographically Weighted Regression (GWR) which estimates local parameters, which varies over space, instead of global one (OLS).

Cesar Lopez and Viviana Rojas

Status at UTSA - Cesar Lopez, Undergraduate, UTSA International Business Department: Viviana Rojas, Associate Professor, UTSA Communications Department

Project Title - "Mexicans' Perception of U.S. Retirees Living in their Communities".

Summary - Little is known about the feelings and thoughts of the Mexican community in regards to this lifestyle migration process. In this study, we want to expand the focus of our research on U.S. retirement migration to Mexico to include the view of the local residents, such as landowners, service sector and workers that tend and provide the White American retirees living in San Miguel de Allende, Ajijic and Puerto Vallarta and, Mazatlan. This study will understand how locals negotiate with foreigners. What types of practices are the most common in their daily exchanges and what changes have taken place in the community as a result of the increasing influx of U.S. lifestyle migrants to these locations.

Michael J. Lewis and Dr. Blake Weissling

Status at UTSA - Michael Lewis, PhD. Candidate, UTSA Geological Sciences: Dr. Weissling, Lecture Professor, UTSA Geological Sciences

Project Title - "Ice Mass Assessment and Temporal Change of the Jamapa Galcier, Pico de Orizaba, Veracruz"

Summary - The loss of ice from the world's mountain glacier systems due to climate change induced melting has enormous implications for local mountain ecosystems, water supply issues, and local economies. Mountain glaciers in tropical latitudes are exceptionally rare in the world and due to geography are especially vulnerable to climate forcings. The Jamapa glacier on the north side of Mexico's Pico de Orizaba, the third highest peak in North America, has seen a remarkable loss of ice int he past two decades, as assessed with satellite imagery and first-hand accounts from climbing expeditions. Since the International Geophysical Year (1957-58) the Jamapa Glacier has not been studied with any focused effort. The implications for ice loss and melt at Pico are substantial, including water supply for over 1 million people and catastrophic natural disasters such as floods, lahars and landslides, all of which have occurred in the region in the past century.

 


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