Jamaica Osorio, PhD candidate in English, awarded Ford Foundation Dissertation Fellowship

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Karin Mackenzie, (808) 956-4051
Education Specialist, Arts & Sciences/LLL Community Relations
Posted: Jun 20, 2017

Jamaica Heolimeleikalani Osorio. Photo by Will Matsuda.
Jamaica Heolimeleikalani Osorio. Photo by Will Matsuda.

Jamaica Heolimeleikalani Osorio, a PhD candidate in English, has received the 2017 Ford Foundation Dissertation Fellowship. She is one of only 38 individuals to receive the fellowship among national competitors. 

The fellowship supports the final year of dissertation writing and defense by providing a $25,000 stipend to individuals working to complete a dissertation leading to a PhD or ScD degree, and valuable networking opportunities. Osorio’s dissertation is titled “Aikāne, A Kanaka Maoli Moʻolelo Beyond Queer Theory: Unsettling White Settler Logics and (Re)membering Indigenous Desires.”

Osorio said she is both honored and humbled to receive this award. “I’m most excited about collaborating with other fellows who share common goals and whose work I admire," she said, adding that she is grateful to the Ford Foundation for providing resources, both physical and intellectual.

Osorio was judged on scholarly competence and future potential as a scholar, researcher and teacher in higher education. The review panel clearly saw what Osorio has always exhibited, from "small kid time” growing up in Palolo, a passion and gift for sharing the spoken and written word in the Hawaiian or English language.  

Also among the judges’ considerations is the applicant’s ability to use diversity as a resource to enrich teaching and learning. No doubt, Osorio impressed in this area as well, as she currently works as a student support specialist in the Native Hawaiian Student Services office at UH Mānoa. She will continue to do so throughout the fellowship. 

She uniquely shares Hawaiian culture through activism, poetry and music. She is a professional performer and widely published poet who has shared her art throughout Oceania on five continents, and at the White House.

For more information, visit: http://www.catalog.hawaii.edu/courses/departments/lll.htm