Just two days after forming my idea for research on TCEDC’s impact in the community, almost everything seems to be in line: TCEDC’s directors have said my research is an important need; Dr. Nibbs, my cultural anthropology professor and mentor for the internship, has helped me to outline a plan and create interview questions; and I already have started some preliminary interviews with several of TCEDC’s clients. Yet I already have some hesitations about the whole thing. As good as the idea may sound, it ultimately came from me, an outsider, rather than the community. The distinction is significant: not only does my outsider’s perspective compromise my ability to do research, but it also establishes an undesirable relationship that places [...]
In Taos, poverty rates among high school graduates is almost 10 percent above the state average. For TCEDC, that means that most clients simply cannot afford to pay at cost for the services that TCEDC provides. As a result, TCEDC heavily subsidizes its services, making it largely dependent on grant funding. I soon recognized an opportunity to use my skills and experience to maximize my impact at TCEDC by addressing its need for grant funding. Grant funding is something I have dealt with since high school, having written grant proposals for a struggling nonprofit organization in Hawaii (I ultimately helped them to win two grants!) and organizing grant-writing services for other nonprofits in need. Although TCEDC needs no help with [...]
Kyle is a junior President's Scholar majoring in biology, individual studies in applied scientific computing and human rights in Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences. Kyle is participating in Engaged Learning and also was awarded a Maguire and Irby Family Foundation Public Service Internship from the Cary M. Maguire Center for Ethics and Public Responsibility at SMU. During summer 2013, he interned at two nonprofit organizations: Taos County Economic Development Center, where he examined how economic development corporations can help nonprofits empower communities, and Ke Ola Mamo Native Hawaiian Health Services, where he examined how one local nonprofit is able to work directly with the community.