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Trent University Researchers and Graduate Students Receive Over $260,000 in SSHRC Federal Funding

Insight Development and Talent Program grants awarded to nine researchers and scholars across the humanities and social sciences

Two Trent University professors have received $138,098 in Insight Development Grants and seven graduate students have received another $122,500 in Talent Program grants for a total of $260,598 in funding for the University through the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC).

The Insight Development Grants have been awarded to Dr. Katrina Keefer, of Trent’s History Department, to support her research that will help descendants of enslaved Africans trace their ancestors’ origins, and to Dr. Lynne Davis, Chanie Wenjack School for Indigenous Studies, to further explore how long­-term Indigenous­/settler alliances have emerged.

"Along with Trent's SSHRC mentor, Dr. David Sheinin, I am very pleased with the announcement today that Trent University will receive over $130,000 in federal funding from the Social Sciences & Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) in the category of Insight Development Grants,” said Dr. Neil Emery, vice-president research and innovation at Trent University. “It is especially promising because these grants enable the development of new research questions, as well as experimentation with new methods, theoretical approaches and ideas. Dr. Lynne Davis will investigate learning from long term Indigenous settler alliances while Dr. Katrina Keefer will query decoding origins of African identities during the slave trade. These critical social inquiries speak to the high calibre of innovative research and thinking occurring around us at Trent."

Professor Keefer’s research project aims to develop a searchable visual database to reveal individual identities and origins of enslaved Africans. The visual records will extend beyond documents of transport and sale. The database will provide a means of comparison and verification of visual data — such as descriptions of body markings including intricate tattoos and scarification — that can be used to specifically identify societies and branches of a given family.

Professor Davis’ research will explore how long-term Indigenous/settler alliances emerge and unfold in particular spatial and historical contexts in Canada.

In addition to the Insight Development Grants, graduate students at Trent also received support through this most recent SSHRC announcement - $122,500 in funding through seven Talent Program grants. The SSHRC Talent Program supports students and postdoctoral researchers to develop Canada’s next generation of researchers and leaders, within academia and across the public, private and not-for-profit sectors, specifically in the humanities and social sciences.

"Trent University has over 600 graduate students studying at the masters and doctoral level, attracting very strong students as demonstrated by our most recent winners of the CGS-M graduate scholarship competition,” said Dr. Craig Brunetti, dean of Graduate Studies at Trent University. “Our students are pursuing degrees in research-based disciplinary and interdisciplinary programs as well as an ever-expanding list of professional-based graduate degrees.  Whether pursuing a professional-based or research degree, graduate students are mentored to become critical thinkers, to work collaboratively, to increase knowledge, to learn specialized skills, and to develop experience that complements prior learning to enhance students’ career aspirations. It is these skills that set Trent’s students apart and makes them national competitive for careers and awards."

The Talent Program recipients at Trent include: Michelle Artensen, History; Emily Amon, Sustainability Studies; Melissa Hennig, History; Corrie Hyland, Anthropology; Daisy Pyman, Psychology; Gabriel Lopez, Psychology; and Linnea Veloce, Anthropology. 

Trent University is one of 79 universities to benefit from the $141 million SSHRC funding announcement in support of close to 3,000 researchers at institutions across Canada.

Posted on January 30, 2019