President Merrill Eisenberg announced recently that a critical milestone had been reached in the campaign to endow the Gil Kushner Student Travel Awards. A total of $20,000 had been contributed by the end of October. This amount, President Eisenberg noted, constitutes 80% of the endowment goal of $25,000.
The Kushner Student Travel Award will provide two travel scholarships ($500 each) for students to attend the annual meetings of the Society. The instructions and criteria for the travel awards may be found on the SfAA web page (www.sfaa.net, click on “Awards” and select “Gil Kushner”)
This first fund-raising target was achieved because of a challenge grant made by long-time membe r, Bob Wulff, who was a graduate of the University of South Florida and a close friend of Gil Kushner’s. He offered the endowment a sum of $10,000, if the Society could raise contributions to match that amount. The campaign will continue into the fall with a focus on the $5,000 that remains to complete the endowment.
The first Gil Kushner Student Travel Awards will be selected in conjunction with the 72nd Annual Meeting of the Society in Baltimore in March of 2012. Students may compete for the travel awards by completing a brief summary of their career interests in relation to the theme of the Awards—the persistence of culture.
The Awards honor the memory of a long-time member of the Society, Gil Kushner. Kushner retired in 2000 from the Department of Anthropology at the University of South Florida, where he had been instrumental in organizing and managing the highly-successful applied anthropology program.