CRI Announces Eliana Rivero and Cuban Studies Scholarships

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Leonardo Falcón, Maite Morales, and Jack Vertovec

Every year, the Cuban Research Institute (CRI) offers the Eliana Rivero Scholarship to conduct research in Cuba by FIU graduate students. This year, CRI will be offering two additional awards using external funds from the CRI Cuban Studies Scholarship. These scholarships provide FIU graduate students the opportunity to conduct research in Cuban studies for one week in Cuba. The awards cover up to $2,000 per student to offset the costs of airfare, lodging, meals, visa application, and other educational expenses.

The following students received the three scholarships:

  • Leonardo Falcón, a Ph.D. candidate in History, for his research project entitled "Manufacturing Sin: Francisco Carranco and the Establishment of the Inquisition in Cuba and the Caribbean, 1595–1614." Leo earned his M.A. in Latin American and Caribbean Studies at Florida International University and his B.A. in Cultural Anthropology at the University of North Texas. He has already completed archival research for his current project in Florida and Mexico. He will conduct further research on the Spanish Inquisition at the Historical Archives of the Archbishopric of Havana.
  • Maite Morales, a Ph.D. candidate in History, for her research project entitled "Communal Desires: Cuban Consumption and Nostalgia, 1972–Present." Maite earned her M.A. in History and her B.A. in History and English from Florida International University. Focusing on the province of Matanzas, Cuba, her dissertation illustrates everyday life and the impact of the Soviet presence in Cuban consumer culture and consumption patterns. She will conduct oral history interviews in Matanzas, Cárdenas, and Varadero regarding daily life and culture in Cuba during the 1970s.
  • Jack Vertovec, a Ph.D. candidate in Global and Sociocultural Studies, for his research project entitled "Entrepreneurial Intersections: An Ethnographic Study of Structural Conditions and Economic Practices in Contemporary Cuba." Jack holds a B.A. in Anthropology, Ethnic Studies, and Spanish from the University of Colorado, Boulder. He is interested in how small business owners in Cuba use hybrid economic strategies to navigate structural conditions and changing state policies and regulations in Cuba today. He will conduct ethnographic fieldwork in Havana and Cienfuegos, including semi-structured interviews with an array of private entrepreneurs (such as restaurant workers, street vendors, and taxi drivers) and professional experts.