Christopher Brodigan Award

The Christopher Brodigan Fund was established in memory of Christopher Brodigan, a Wesleyan student who died in an accident in his frosh year. The Fund pays tribute to Christopher’s deep interest in Africa and to the public service he provided through teaching in Botswana prior to entering Wesleyan. Awards will be made to graduating Wesleyan seniors (first priority) and recent Wesleyan graduates who plan to pursue public service or research (in that order of preference) on the African continent.

Students from any discipline are encouraged to submit applications proposing a public service or research project. Service projects should be carefully designed to provide some form of valuable assistance to people in Africa. Students may propose to provide service in educational institutions, development organizations, grassroots groups, or non-governmental organizations pursuing service work. Research projects will be supported especially if it is likely to provide concrete benefits to African society or to contribute to the student’s ability to serve African interests in some capacity.

Several awards of up to approximately $3,000 each will be offered. Applicants are strongly encouraged to consult with a member of the African Studies faculty (see Faculty listing on this website) while formulating their proposals. Recipients are required to submit reports on their projects once they are completed.

Congratulations to the 2017 Award Winners!!

Bridget Adarkwa (’17) and Nailah Hines (’17)

Their project supports the Girl’s Education Initiative of Ghana, in Ghana’s Ashanti and Greater Accra regions. GEIG is dedicated to the professional and academic success of women in Ghana. They will be using their unique skills in communication and marketing, background that includes working with radio stations, the Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore, and Bloomberg Philanthropies, to assist GEIG. They will be creating a new marketing campaign for that organization, and assist their summer internship and volunteer program by conducting a program evaluation, something else they already have background in.


Matthew Shelley-Reade (’17)

Matthew’s work will be in Rwanda, on a project titled: Mitigating Climate Change and Protecting Biodiversity along the Albertine Rift. His unique background includes extensive experience with Geographic Information Systems (GIS) research. And it includes impressive documentary film-making, for projects on Middletown’s history (his senior thesis), on the quinoa industry in Peru (which included travel and interviews in that country), and with a PBS television series. For this project, he will partner with Biocoop an environmental non-profit that promotes issues of environmental sustainability, climate change mitigation, and biodiversity conservation. This organization is a bottom-up organization, working with youth, local communities, and local farmers in its projects. He will be helping the team develop community education projects, using GIS and developing video materials to assist in community outreach. He will film Biocoop activities the entire time he is there, with the purpose of creating promotional materials for that organization.