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History Professor Receives Harvard Fellowship

History Professor Receives Harvard Fellowship

Professor Girard (June 10, 2014) Dr. Philippe R. Girard, professor and head of the history department at McNeese State University, has been awarded a Sheila Biddle Ford Fellowship to Harvard University's W.E.B. Du Bois Research Institute at the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research in Cambridge, Mass., for fall 2014.
           
During his residence, Girard will work on a biography of Haitian revolutionary hero Toussaint Louverture, much of whose life remains a mystery. Girard will use the extensive research facilities and libraries, among many of the other scholarly privileges Harvard has to offer, in order to gain a full understanding of Louverture's life.
           
"Though he is generally considered one of world history's leading figures, much of his past remains very obscure," said Girard. "My goal is to fully understand the life of the founding father of Haiti."
           
Girard said his stay at Harvard will also give him the most precious luxury a researcher can have-time. "I look forward to joining a community of like-minded scholars working on related topics so as to try out some of my ideas with them," he said.
           
He said the McNeese community is very excited about his fellowship opportunity, which he thinks reflects positively on the quality of instructors working here at McNeese.
           
The fellowship program's aim is to provide a vibrant environment in which to write, study, collaborate and thrive for scholars engaged in African and African American research. Du Bois Research Institute Fellows are participants in a range of activities including colloquia, public conferences, lectures, readings and workshops.
           
The program, founded in 1975, offers a stipend and residence for scholars each year at both predoctoral and postdoctoral levels.