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New grant helps add environmental focus to Asian studies

By Amelia Schoeneman '12
April 13, 2012

St. Olaf College will use a new $50,000 grant from the Henry Luce Foundation to develop initiatives that integrate Asian and environmental studies.

The grant is part of the highly competitive Luce Initiative on Asian Studies and the Environment (LIASE), a program that began in 2011 to encourage liberal arts colleges to adapt an environmental perspective to Asian studies.

The funds will support the development of a core group of students with transcultural and translingual competence and strong backgrounds in environmental studies. The grant also will increase collaboration between faculty in Asian and environmental studies.

Another goal of the project is to increase the frequency and breadth of communications with partner institutions in Asia through web-based technology.

As a recipient of this initial pilot grant, St. Olaf will be eligible to apply for an additional implementation grant worth up to $400,000 in the summer of 2013.

Associate Professor of Political Science and Asian Studies Katherine Tegtmeyer Pak and Associate Professor of Biology and Environmental Studies John Schade are leading the efforts to bridge the Departments of Asian and Environmental Studies.

Contact Kari VanDerVeen at 507-786-3970 or