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Baruch College Student Miguel Guzman Awarded 2011-2012 Fulbright Research Grant

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Miguel Guzman almost didn’t make it to college. Though his mother came to the United States from the Dominican Republic with the hope of giving her children a better future, he spent much of his childhood in her native country, and later attended public school in a low-income Brooklyn neighborhood facing severe educational challenges. Yet these experiences, plus a year spent working with his father in construction after high school, turned out to be just what pushed him to the path he’s on now; Guzman ultimately decided to return to school to pursue a college degree -- the first in his family. His goal: “Educate myself as much as possible about the social, political, and economic issues faced by disadvantaged communities, especially in Latin America. I have a healthy ambition of undertaking international work in the region that promotes social justice, the consolidation of strong democratic institutions, and economic growth that is reflected on all parts of society equally,” he says.

It is precisely because of his interest in studying these types of Latin American communities that Guzman has been awarded a prestigious Fulbright Grant for Research for the academic year 2011-2012. This grant will provide him the means to spend time conducting research on the effects of a specific Peruvian effort to alleviate poverty in the country. Guzman plans to work closely with the Institute of Peruvian Studies (IEP) in Lima as well as the Juntos organization, which has developed the anti-poverty plan that will be the basis of his research. “A key question I hope my research will answer will be the effectiveness of the social program on stopping the cycle of poverty that traps a large segment of women and children in Peru,” he says. “I look forward to learning more about the region so that I can one day become an agent of change.”

Guzman graduates from Baruch this year with a bachelor’s in political science. The College congratulates him on this accomplishment and for the outstanding work he’s put in to become a Fulbright grant recipient.