University of Washington

Funding Opportunities

Ottenberg-Winans Fellowship Fund


The Ottenberg-Winans Fellowship Fund was established to honor the contributions of Professors Simon Ottenberg and Edgar V. Winans to the African Studies Program at the University of Washington and to the field of African Studies. During their distinguished careers, Professors Ottenberg and Winans taught and mentored numerous students and advanced scholarship on Africa. Recipients of this fellowship commemorate their legacy.


Eligible students may be enrolled in any undergraduate, graduate or professional school at the University of Washington. For UW students traveling to Africa, the fellowship can be used to support travel and related expenses, living expenses, and research materials. For African students visiting or studying at UW, funds can be used to support same expenses as well as costs related to attending the UW. Fellowships are expected to be awarded for amounts between $250 and $750.

DEADLINE: Friday, April 3rd 2015
Awarded students will be asked to submit a photo and a short description of the project to be featured on our African Studies website


Questions about the fellowship or the application process should be directed to:

2015 Ottenberg-Winans Fellowship Recipients

The African Studies Program at the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies wishes to congratulate:

Patience Idegwu - Pre-Major Arts & Sciences

"I will be using the Ottenberg-Winans Fellowship to pay for my travels during the Ghana Study Abroad Program. I will be traveling to rural and urban areas, therefore this scholarship will allow me to fulfill the capacity of my research. My plan is to look into how local newspapers, television and radio, as well as social media, are utilized as a means of attracting people’s attention. For example, while people in the US can put anything on YouTube, how do budding musicians in Ghana get their work to be known? As a marketing major, it is really important for me to know how to promote and advertise. Ghana is extremely big on entertainment, and my goal is to work for an entertainment company. As a result the scholarship will go directly to the traveling expenses, buying and observing different technologies used in Ghana, and also covering my lodging expenses needed to fulfill my research in the different locations."

Senayet Negusse - Speech and Hearing Sciences

"The Ottenberg-Winans Fellowship Fund will contribute to my community club, which I formed several years ago in my home. With this club I have invited bilingual children (primarily Hispanic and African) who are considered “developmentally delayed” or behind into my home for extra language and literacy help. Over the years I have discovered that many children of color (primarily African & Spanish speaking) are often put into classrooms with special needs. I intend to discover why this is the case and how to bridge the gap among African families and the education system. I have tried to educate these children in a different light by bringing in effective teaching strategies from all over the world. In the near future I will be able to conduct research from the observations I have made. Understanding the underlying reasons influencing the disproportionate representation and bridging the gap between families in special education is my goal. I hope to gain valuable information that will lead to me implementing a change in policy, which will benefit immigrants and minority children. Thank you for your support!"

Sheena Lahren - Masters student, Public Affairs

"During my research study abroad trip to Ghana I will be examining how middle school girls use information communication technologies (ICTs). I am primarily interested in the ways in which girls in Ghana communicate with each other and obtain information and how sex education efforts can reach this population through ICTs. While in Ghana, I will be collecting and analyzing data through field interviews. I hope to use my findings to inform a distribution strategy for a nonprofit project I am piloting in June 2016, Power2Girls. Power2Girls is working to distribute a proven solution for “sugar-daddy” awareness intervention in Ghana through classroom instruction and mobile technology. This study abroad experience will enable Power2Girls to understand who has access to the ICTS we are relying on and to what extent across Ghana, what our limitations will be as we scale up, and how we might want to rethink our model."

Jocelyn Moon - Ph.D. Student in Ethnomusicology

"The Ottenberg-Winans fellowship will contribute to my dissertation field research in Nyamapanda, Northeastern Zimbabwe during the 2016 calendar year. My dissertation project focuses on issues of sustainability as they relate to music cultures associated with an instrument called matepe, a marginalized type of mbira historically played by the Buja, Korekore and Sena-Tonga peoples of Northeastern Zimbabwe and adjacent areas across the border in Mozambique. I investigate the ways in which matepe players adapt to changing social, religious and technological contexts, including the emerging presence of matepe music on YouTube and a growing international audience of online learners. Although culture-bearers in Nyamapanda have no means of accessing and directly participating in these online spaces, I seek to understand how online resource sharing and dialogue contributes to the vitality of matepe music within Zimbabwe. Thus far, online activity has led to the formation of on-the-ground collaborative networks between matepe players in urban and rural areas and aided in the distribution of archival recordings of matepe music collected in the 1930s-1970s."

David Aarons - Ph.D. Student in Ethnomusicology


"While much scholarly attention has been given to the relationship between the Caribbean and West Africa, this research focuses on the lived experiences of Caribbean and Ethiopian reggae musicians in East Africa. This research explores the growth and spread of reggae in Ethiopia with attention to the ways in which reggae music functions as a middle ground for repatriated Rastafari and native Ethiopians. Since Emperor Haile Selassie granted land in Ethiopia to Africans in the West in the mid-twentieth century, members of the Rastafari movement have been settling in Ethiopia in fulfillment of a desire to return home. Facing challenges in gaining citizenship and being viewed ambivalently by some Ethiopians, Rastafari have used music as a means of bridging the divide between themselves and Ethiopians."


2014 Fellowship Recipients

African Studies warmly congratulates the 2014 Ottenberg-Winans recipients.

The 2014 fellowship recipients are:

Ashley Andelian - Undergraduate student in the Department of Linguistics

Britta Anson - PhD student in the Department of History 

Cynthia Simekha - Undergraduate student in Public Health with minor in Global Health

and Geography

Eloho Basikoro - PhD student in the Department of Geography

Matthew Adeiza - PhD student in the Department of Communication 

Sarah Dreier - PhD student in the Department of Political Science

Sarah Kane - Undergraduate student in the School of Art

Ailene Umayam - Undergraduate student UW Bothell - Nursing 

2013 Fellowship Recipients
African Studies warmly congratulates the 2013 Ottenberg-Winans recipients.

The 2013 fellowship recipients are:

Daniel E Coslett - Graduate Student in Built Environment

Daniel Low - Graduate Student in the Medical School

Jade Graddy - Undergraduate Student in the Department of Linguistics 

Vijay Narayan - Graduate Student in the Department of Global Health 

Questions about the fellowship or the application process should be directed to:

To make a contribution to the Ottenberg-Winans fund, please click here.

For other student funding and scholarship opportunities please click here


African Studies Program
University of Washington
419 Thomson Hall
Box 353650
Seattle, WA 98195

Ben Gardner / Chair
Associate Professor, Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences, UW Bothell

Monica Rojas-Stewart
Assistant Director
206.616.0998 office
206.685.0668 fax

Harry Murphy
ASP Librarian