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Outreach and Philanthropy

Dear TLC Members,

Dr. Judy Ledgerwood has posted this letter for the TLC members:

Dear Fellow Thailand, Lao and Cambodia Studies Scholar,

Best wishes for the New Year. As you know the changes in the past decade have been mixed for Cambodia, lingering problems of dire poverty and political instability, but signs of hope that include an end to the Khmer Rouge as a guerilla force, the clearing of land mines, and the rebuilding of infrastructure. But perhaps one of the most hopeful signs is that a new generation of young people is graduating from high school and college. If these young people have the opportunity for education, including education at institutions of higher education abroad, Cambodia can replace the generation of educated people lost in war.

Since 1997, six Cambodians have received graduate degrees from Northern Illinois University. Three of these were MA degrees where the students have continued on and are currently enrolled in PhD programs. It is our goal to raise the funds necessary to bring additional students, starting with one Masters level student for a two year program in the 2007-2008, 2008-09 academic years. The student will be chosen from those screened each year by the American Embassy in the competition for Fulbright fellowships. Each year perhaps a dozen students are selected through a very competitive process, including English testing, oral interviews and written applications. But only about half a dozen can usually be funded to attend American Universities through this program. A committee at the NIU Center for Southeast Asian Studies would select the recipient of this new Cambodia/USA Scholarship from the list of Fulbright alternates, matching the student’s interests and background with the available programs at NIU. The American Embassy has agreed to provide us with the alternate list. Because of the Southeast Asia Program and a community of scholars with an interest in the Cambodia, NIU provides a supportive environment for these students.

The costs of this program are minimal because the NIU Graduate School has generously agreed to provide a tuition waiver to the student. What is needed are funds for health insurance, transportation costs and living expenses, estimated to be $33,500 for a two year MA program. We are writing to you because of your previous interest in helping the people of Cambodia. If we can find just 30 people to give $1000, or 60 people to give $500, or 300 people to give $100, or some combination thereof, we can provide a Cambodian student with the opportunity to return to his or her country with the qualifications necessary to help rebuild Cambodia from the devastation of war. Your contribution, of any amount, can help make this possible. We have just begun this effort but already have over $5000 committed.

Your tax deductible contribution should be sent to:

Northern Illinois University Foundation
Attn: Jon Salvani
Division of University Advancement and Development
Altgeld Hall
DeKalb, IL 60115 USA

Please be sure to note in the memo line that your contribution is for the “Cambodia/USA Scholarship Fund.” The Foundation will send you a receipt letter for tax purposes.

Thank you for your kind consideration of this appeal.


Dr. Kheang Un
Dr. Judy Ledgerwood
Northern Illinois University
203 Tilton Park Dr.
DeKalb, IL 60115 USA

Resource Tenure in Community-Based Natural Resource Management: Building Research Capacity (Laos):

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