These scholarships are open to PhD students across Canada and are valued at $50,000 per year for three years during their doctoral studies. Sandy Barron found out that he had won a Vanier CGS two minutes before meeting with a student to discuss a paper.
“I had to hold myself together enough to discuss her paper, so I suppose my first reaction was to suppress my desire to jump up and down,” said Barron, who is a PhD student in the Department of History.
Barron’s research is about the politics around deaf and blind education in Western Canada during 1880-1930.
“It’s mostly an examination of why the three Prairie provinces did as little as they did in the area, at a time where state formation around other institutions out West was gathering steam,” said Barron.
“It’s about how hearing and sighted people and government officials saw notions of citizenship and educability for everyone, and how deaf and blind children fit into that.”
Barron believes that we need a better understanding of past politics around accommodation and inclusion of Deaf people and people with disabilities.
“This is a central issue we now face as a country with an aging population and communities of people with disabilities who increasingly seek and demand autonomy and respect,” said Barron.
Vanier CGS funds will help Barron visit a wide array of archives across Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta. These include government archives, deaf and blind association archives, deaf schools, and city archives.
“The security that Vanier affords is going to allow me time and funds for the extensive travel that the success of this project relies on,” said Barron.
You can read more about Barron’s research here: https://gradstudents.carleton.ca/2017/grad-research-disability-history-canada/