Anthropologist Mark Schurr receives Ganey Award

Author: Paul Horn


Mark Schurr, associate professor and chair of anthropology at the University of Notre Dame has received the 2008 Rodney F. Ganey, Ph.D. Faculty Community-Based Research Award from the Center for Social Concerns.

The $5,000 award annually honors a Notre Dame faculty member whose research has made a contribution to a local community organization.

Since 2003, Schurr has done research with the Kankakee Valley Historical Society (KVHS) to learn about how Native Americans in Northwest Indiana responded to forced removal from their lands during the 19th century.Schurrs project has involved some 40 Notre Dame students in archeological field work which helped support the KVHS mission to restore and interpret the Kankakee Valley environment while preserving its archeological resources.

Also announced by the Center for Social Concerns, which manages the Ganey projects, were three mini-grant projects which will receive $6,000 funding each to explore:

•Factors that perpetuate criminal activityMichael Jenuwine, a member of the Law Schools Legal Aid program and an associate professor of psychology, and undergraduates Andrea Laidman and Martha Calcutt will investigate the impact of such factors as poverty, lack of education and job training, mental illness, drug use and abusive home situations on violent crime. They will partner with Dismas House of Michiana and Companions on the Journey.

•Lead exposure and asthmaA team directed by psychology professor John Borkowski and led by psychology graduate student Jody Nicholson will partner with Memorial Hospital and the St. Joseph County Head Start Consortium in an effort to reduce exposure to lead and other household pollutants.

•Elementary school switching and student achievementStudents of Jennifer Warlick, associate professor and chair of the Department of Economics and Policy Studies, have learned that South Bends most economically disadvantaged elementary school students frequently switch schools during the year, a change associated with poor academic performance and behavioral problems. Warlick, student Nicholas Krafft and a partner in the South Bend Community School Corp. will explore low-cost programs that reduce student mobility.

Contact: Mary Beckman at 574-631-4172 or

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