Haitian Studies Association

Opportunities

Director of the CUNY Haitian Studies Institute (Jan. 14, 2022)

Assistant/Associate/Full Professor and Program Administration

Job ID: 23257

Location: Brooklyn College

Full/Part Time: Full-Time

Regular/Temporary: Regular

FACULTY VACANCY ANNOUNCEMENT

Brooklyn College seeks to hire a Director of the CUNY Haitian Studies Institute, located at Brooklyn College. The Haitian Studies Institute is a world-class research unit of CUNY and is dedicated to a three-fold mission to:

  1. Contribute to the construction and dissemination of knowledge and the advancement of Haitian studies through interdisciplinary research
  2. Facilitate collaboration among scholars, intellectuals, teachers and professors, students, and public agencies conducting research about and/or serving Haitian and other diasporic populations
  3. Engage in policy analysis and research in order to better understand and shape policy and programs that impact the Haitian and Haitian-American communities.

The successful candidate will perform educational and administrative duties. Responsibilities include:

  • Serves as the Institute’s chief expert on matters pertaining to Haiti and the Haitian Diaspora
  • Oversees the day-to-day operations of the Institute, including supervising and managing the performance of staff and managing the Institute’s budget.
  • Plans and implements programs related to the work of the Institute including, publications, grant-seeking, seminars, community engagement activities
  • Works closely and collaboratively with the Dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, the college’s faculty, staff, community groups, and the Institute Advisory Board to plan, develop and strengthen the Institute’s programmatic initiatives and resources.
  • Collaborates with the Institutes’ Visiting Scholars on special projects, community and student research activities related to the Institute and its mission
  • Assumes responsibility for fundraising for strategic initiatives and special projects and for the stewardship of the Institute’s resources

Brooklyn College serves students from over150 countries who speak over 100 languages and dialects and thus constitutes a vibrant microcosm of the rich diversity and energy that characterizes the borough of Brooklyn and the greater New York City area itself. Its mission features “a special commitment to educate immigrant and first-generation college students from the diverse communities that make up our city and state.” The college ethos is invested in the educational and eventual career success of all of its students. We are committed to fostering a spirit of camaraderie and shared ideals across the entire spectrum of our varied constituency. By accessing a first-class and affordable college education in an inclusive and nurturing intellectual milieu, our students acquire the skills, confidence, and global mindedness that allow them to thrive in a rapidly changing, unpredictable marketplace of ideas that is increasingly mindless of borders and spans the gamut of cultures and vernaculars.

To this end, the college seeks faculty who are eager to engage with the diversity of our student body and have a demonstrated commitment to inclusion and heterogeneity through teaching, research and/or service. We seek to recruit and retain faculty from historically underrepresented groups who reflect the mosaic of our student population. Successful candidates will bring their unique creativity, sensitivity, insights and perspectives to a community that welcomes innovation in scholarship and teaching. Together we will model the finest that a public urban liberal arts, sciences, and professional studies college can be for the present and future.

QUALIFICATIONS

Applicants must possess a Ph.D. and a record of publication in the social sciences, e.g., sociology, public policy, political science, international relations or a related interdisciplinary field, including public health.

The successful candidate for Director will be a nationally recognized scholar whose research focuses on Haiti and its diasporas. The candidate should have a history of leadership and engagement in the community, as well as in academic programming. Successful fund-raising, whether through grants, corporate sponsors, government agencies, or NGO’s will be part of the Director’s portfolio and should be a part of the candidate’s professional experience.

Preference will be given to applicants who are trilingual in Haitian Kreyòl, English and French.

COMPENSATION

Salary commensurate with education and credentials. All appointments are subject to financial availability.

CUNY offers faculty a competitive compensation and benefits package covering health insurance, pension and retirement benefits, paid parental leave, and savings programs. We also provide mentoring and support for research, scholarship, and publication as part of our commitment to ongoing faculty professional development.

HOW TO APPLY

STEP ONE – Click “Apply Now”

From our job posting system, select “Apply Now”, create or log in to a user account, and provide the requested information. If you are viewing this posting from outside our system, please visit https://cuny.jobs/brooklyn-college/new-jobs/

Applicants should upload the following in .doc, .pdf, or .rtf format:

  • An application letter indicating the desired position, and should detail how their teaching, service and/or scholarship has supported the success of students from racial, ethnic, and gender backgrounds that are underrepresented in their academic fields; applicants who have not yet had the opportunity for such experience should note how their work will further CUNY’s commitment to diversity.
  • Current and detailed curriculum vitae
  • A one-page document describing the candidate’s three-year research agenda and vision for the Institute
  • Copies of publications and/or working papers

STEP TWO – Go to https://websql.brooklyn.cuny.edu/hrref/

All applicants are required to have three confidential letters of recommendation submitted electronically by their recommenders by visiting the link above and entering the contact information for three (3) recommenders.

The online system will automatically email your recommenders a request to submit a letter via the system. Full instructions will be provided.

Emailed or hard copy applications will not be considered.

CLOSING DATE

Review of applications to begin January 14, 2022 and will continue until the position is filled.

JOB SEARCH CATEGORY

CUNY Job Posting: Faculty

EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY

CUNY encourages people with disabilities, minorities, veterans and women to apply. At CUNY, Italian Americans are also included among our protected groups. Applicants and employees will not be discriminated against on the basis of any legally protected category, including sexual orientation or gender identity. EEO/AA/Vet/Disability Employer

Opportunities

York College/CUNY: Assistant Professor (Jan. 14, 2022)

French and Haitian Kreyòl.

Department of World Languages, Literatures and Humanities

 

Job ID: 23347

Location: York College

Full/Part Time: Full-Time

Regular/Temporary: Regular

FACULTY VACANCY ANNOUNCEMENT

The Department of World Languages, Literatures and Humanities at York College/CUNY invites applications for a full time, tenure-track position in French and Haitian Kreyòl. The dynamic candidate should have a strong background in teaching methodologies and/or applied linguistics and phonetics, and teach French and Kreyòl at all undergraduate levels, with special emphasis on Haitian and Francophone literatures, cultures, and civilizations.

The person hired for this post will be actively involved with curriculum development in the field of French/Kreyòl, and Haitian studies, advising and placing students, serving as faculty advisor for student clubs, publications and campus-based Haitian and Francophone Studies Association, and participating in departmental and college committees. Expertise in the pedagogical needs of both heritage and second-language learners is highly desirable as well.

Teaching Faculty perform teaching, research and guidance duties in area(s) of expertise. They share responsibility for committee and department assignments including administrative, supervisory, and other functions.

QUALIFICATIONS

Ph.D. degree in area(s) of experience or equivalent. Also required are College level teaching experience, the ability to teach effectively in an urban setting, the ability to work in a supportive and collaborative academic environment, demonstrated scholarship or achievement, and ability to cooperate with others for the good of the institution. For appointment as Assistant Professor: Doctorate in area of expertise. The candidate should be proficient in English as well.

COMPENSATION

CUNY offers faculty a competitive compensation and benefits package covering health insurance, pension and retirement benefits, paid parental leave, and savings programs. We also provide mentoring and support for research, scholarship, and publication as part of our commitment to ongoing faculty professional development.

HOW TO APPLY

In order to be considered for this position, applicants must submit a cover letter, CV/resume, teaching and research philosophy statements, and contact information for three references (email and telephone). Please upload all materials as ONE DOCUMENT in doc, pdf, or rtf format.

You may only apply online through the CUNY.edu job board.

To apply:

  • Please go to www.CUNY.edu, go to the Employment drop-down menu and click the ‘Search Job Postings’ tab.

Filter by Job Location by clicking on York College. The title of this position is Assistant Professor – Dept. of World Languages, Literatures and Humanities, Job ID 23347.

  • Click the ‘Apply Now’ tab and follow the prompts from there, including creating an account or logging into a previously created account.

York College/CUNY is an EEO/AA/IRCA/ADA Employer.

CLOSING DATE

January 14, 2022

JOB SEARCH CATEGORY

CUNY Job Posting: Faculty

EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY

CUNY encourages people with disabilities, minorities, veterans and women to apply. At CUNY, Italian Americans are also included among our protected groups. Applicants and employees will not be discriminated against on the basis of any legally protected category, including sexual orientation or gender identity. EEO/AA/Vet/Disability Employer.

 

Announcements & Statements, Opportunities

2021 Nominations for the H.S.A. Board (Student Representative)

New Board Members (2020): Mamyrah Dougé-Prosper, Ayanna Legros, Petrouchka Moïse


English

Krèyol

Français


OPEN POSITIONS

  • One (1) Student Representative (with a seat on the Board), for a (2) two-year term, from January 2022 to December 2023. 

 BOARD OF DIRECTORS

The Board of Directors (“the Board”) shall administer the affairs of Haitian Studies Association (HSA). The terms of the elected members shall be for three years. Contingent on the number of vacated positions, new members shall be elected every year electronically or by paper ballot at the annual meeting as prescribed in the By-Laws. The Board shall carry out HSA’s mission, purposes and goals, and promote its professional interests. The Board must also ensure that ties are maintained with Haitian academic institutions. The Board shall oversee the business of the HSA, manage its properties, receive gifts, grants, and donations; approve and implement annual budgets, and take all the necessary actions in the interest of HSA.

STUDENT REPRESENTATIVE

There shall be a designated student member. The student representative will serve from January 2022 to December 2023 and will complete the three-year term of the previous student member who was only able to serve one year.  The nominee must have attended two out of the last five Haitian Studies Association Conferences and be a member in good standing and must demonstrate a potential for making contributions to the field of Haitian Studies. In the event that the student member is no longer a student, they will continue to serve as a board member until the next scheduled election. The student representative will receive an established and set stipend to attend the HSA annual meeting.

The Student Representative is a member of The Emerging Scholars Committee, which provides directions to the Board on all matters that pertain to the scholarship and development of undergraduate and graduate students and all other scholars who have recently completed graduate degrees and/or at the beginning of their careers. The committee also oversees the annual Emerging Scholars events and research and travel awards. The Student Representative may chair the Emerging Scholars Committee.

RESPONSIBILITIES OF BOARD MEMBERS

Each Board member is expected

  • To be knowledgeable about and support the HSA’s mission, services, policies, and programs.
  • Support the Board in carrying out its fiduciary responsibilities.
  • Attend all board and committee meetings and functions, which consist of the Annual Conference held either in October or November, as well as the Annual Board Retreat held every April (the location of both meetings varying in accordance with the location of the conference), and in addition periodical – usually monthly – zoom conference calls, variable according to work to be done.
  • Serve on standing and ad hoc committees or task forces, and offer to take on special assignments.
  • Recruit members to and inform scholars about HSA.
  • Seek candidates (for election to the Board) who can make significant contributions to the work of the Board and HSA.
  • Keep up-to-date on major developments in Haitian Studies.
  • Serve the full length of the three-year term (2 years in this case as it is a special election). 
  • Active participation is required to remain a member of the Board (no participation may lead to removal). 

NOMINATION REQUIREMENTS

Each nominee for Student Representative on the Board

  • must have been a member of HSA for two of the last five years
  • must have attended two out of the last five Haitian Studies Association Conferences
  • must be enrolled in an accredited full-time program to be a student representative 

NOMINATION PROCEDURES

All members of the Haitian Studies Association may enter a nomination. Self-nominations are welcomed. Current Board members may be nominated to run for election again.

Nomination materials should include a brief statement (400 words maximum) describing expertise, experience, and interest in Haitian Studies, and a recent CV and a photo. The deadline for nominations is 30 November 2021, 11:59 pm EST. Voting will take place by electronic ballot from December 3 to 10, 2021. The newly elected student representative will be announced on December 11, 2021.  The (2) two-year term begins in January 2022 and ends in December 2023.

 To enter a nomination or self-nomination, please complete the form here.

A submission form should appear above this line. If nothing appears, please contact us for troubleshooting.

Past Events, Photos & Videos, Videos

The Character Assassination of Haiti (November 1, 2021)



View Recorded Livestream


Co-sponsored by Union Theological Seminary, Haitian Studies Association, and In Cultured Company.

Join us on Monday, November 1, at 8:00 pm EST in celebration of Fèt Gede (Haitian Day of the Dead). Dr. Samuel Cruz and Nyya Flores Toussaint ’19 will host a discussion about how Haiti’s social, political, and spiritual context is wrongly contextualized as being a result of the 1791 Vodou ceremony at Bwa Kayiman that marked the beginning of the Slave Rebellion and Haitian Revolution.

Since Haiti’s successful establishment of the second nation-state in the Americas, Bwa Kayiman has been falsely claimed as Haiti making a pact with the devil in order to be emancipated and independent. This conversation will critically analyze the role imperialism, Christianity, and anti-Blackness have had on Haiti’s current politics, history, and spirituality.

Panelists

Dr. Kyrah Malika Daniels, Assistant Professor of Art History and African & African Diaspora Studies, Boston College
Dr. Nathalie Frédéric Pierre, Assistant Professor of History of African Diaspora, Howard University
Dr. Mamyrah Dougé-Prosper, Assistant Professor School of Social Sciences, University of California Irvine

Environment Blog, Working Group - Environment

The Energy Potential of Marine Macroalgae in Haiti

by Gary W. Gervais & Jodany Fortuné


Welcome to the HSA Working Group on the Environment’s blog series. For information on how to contribute your work, please contact Gary Gervais, ggervais@hushmail.com, or Lois Wilcken, makandal@earthlink.net.



environment

Fig 1: Sargassum invasion on the South coast of Haiti, 2014

Haiti, like most Caribbean countries, faces a growing energy crisis due to the increasing costs of fossil fuels and the lack of indigenous domestic energy supplies. Biofuels are increasingly considered as alternatives to fossil fuels to power modern societies, but they carry their own negative environmental impacts and limitations. In order for biofuels to make a more positive impact on the energy economy of Haiti, three conditions must be met: (i) a new source of millions of tons of sustainably sourced biomass must be discovered with fewer negative environmental impacts than fuel wood; (ii) the biomass must be safely and efficiently transformed into a useful fuel to serve the needs of homes and industries; and (iii) an entire transportation and distribution network has to be created to place this new energy supply in the hands of the end users. Today, we will discuss our research into turning sargassum seaweed into useful biogas energy.

In our laboratory at the University of Puerto Rico (UPR), we have spent a decade exploring the technical and economic viability of using marine macroalgae as a source of biomass to replace part of the fossil fuel demand. Puerto Rico (PR) is even more dependent on imported fossil fuels than Haiti, as 98% of our total energy supplies come from imported oil, gas and coal. Just for comparison, PR imports more than 35 million barrels of oil equivalents per year, while Haiti imports about 7.7 million. The total cost of these imports represents $855 per capita in PR and $47 per capita in Haiti (CIA 2020). In addition to the great environmental costs that these fossil fuels impose on our countries, these imports represent a huge tax on local economies, so that any substitution of imports with domestic energy supplies would represent a positive contribution to economic development in both jurisdictions.

Our research has shown that sargassum can be converted into biogas even in full-strength seawater – that is seawater which is at least 3.2% sea salts. Our research, originally funded by the US Department of Defense from 2012-2015 ( Grant # W911NF-11-1-0218), was designed to demonstrate whether an anaerobic digester could operate in seawater to convert marine biomass into biogas. Biogas is produced by microbial processes which must be carried out in the total absence of oxygen, since it is exceedingly toxic to the microbes which produce methane gas, the key fuel component of biogas. The devices where this process is implemented are called bioreactors, or anaerobic digesters, and are simply large sealed tanks into which one pumps a feed slurry of water and ground up biomass. The slurry passes slowly through the tank as the microbes inside consume the biomass (in our case a sargassum slurry), converting the carbon in the algae into new microbial cells and excreting biogas as a waste product. The same liquid volume that enters the bioreactor every day at the inlet end must be matched to the removal of an equivalent volume of spent effluent at the outlet end, in order to maintain a constant volume of liquid. The spent effluent is still rich in nutrients, dead microbial cells and minerals, and in our original proposal to the DOD we described the possible end applications of this effluent as part of our proposed biogas industry. Our primary interest has been the use of these effluents to promote the creation of a local aquaculture industry to grow high value macroalgae which are commonly used as source of fine chemicals, food, and nutraceuticals. In contrast to Haiti, which has no macroalgae industry, the production and transformation of marine algae is a major industry in Asia, the North Atlantic, and some other Caribbean islands.

Each year, from five to twenty million tons of sargassum drifts across the Caribbean, until it lands on the shores of the islands and the Gulf Coast of Mexico and the United States (US) (Yong, 2019). Haiti, the Dominican Republic (DR), and PR all have to deal with the massive amounts of sargassum which pile up the beaches for a few months every year. In PR and the DR, municipal governments must spend millions of dollars every year to haul tons of sargassum to the sanitary landfills. The marina in Palmas del Mar Puerto Rico alone spends US$175,000 just for sargassum removal from that one small area (Días-Torres, 2021). The excess algae may also destroy coastal fishing in addition to shutting down the tourism industry. Milledge and Harvey reported in 2016%% that Caribbean nations were spending US$120 million per year for sargassum removal, while the island city of Galveston Texas alone was spending US$3.5M per year. As you may already know if you have visited the beaches near Jacmel, this huge mass of algae rots on the beaches, producing toxic hydrogen sulfide gas and driving away tourism.

This biomass could be transformed from an environmental nightmare into a valuable asset if we can demonstrate the technical and economic viability of producing biogas at an industrial scale. Our ten years of work have shown that the technology works at the laboratory scale. What is now required is a pilot facility where we can generate the necessary hard data on feedstock variability, biogas production rates, effluent composition, and effluent applications. With good pilot plant data we could conceivably convince investors (either public or private sector) to invest in the first large scale demonstration plant.

Our group at UPR, in collaboration with researchers from Université Quisqueya in Port-au-Prince, as well as American University of the Caribbean (Les Cayes) have been actively seeking funds from international agencies for the construction and operation of a pilot plant on the south coast of Haiti, which receives the largest deposits of sargassum in the country. Unfortunately, we have yet to receive financing from any of the agencies we have approached. This is only partly due to the current political and social instability in Haiti; other factors impede our fund-raising efforts. These proposals were prepared with a variety of collaborating local and international institutions to build pilot plants in Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, and/or Haiti. Biofuels research, like most applied research, is at the mercy of the whims of national and international agencies that are driven by scientific fashion and popularity as much as by scientific need. Unfortunately, marine biofuels research was recently in a trough and none of our proposals were funded. On a more positive note, the scientific gossip has it that algal biofuels may come back into favor, at least during the Biden administration. In any case, we have already achieved what we can hope to accomplish in our small laboratory bioreactors (See Fig 2), and the next stage of our research must be at a much larger scale, hence, the need for a pilot plant.

Figure 2. 15L laboratory bioreactor at the University of Puerto Rico.

To better understand the potential, we can project the biogas output for every thousand tons of sargassum slurry we process. We should point out that our own research, as well as research from other labs around the Caribbean over the years, has shown that sargassum is one of the most difficult macroalgae species for anaerobic digestion, as the cell wall material is very resistant to anaerobic degradation. Therefore, if we can make useful amounts of biogas from sargassum (see Fig. 3), then we are convinced that we can do so with any other local algae species.

Figure 3. Sargassum collected on Escambron beach, San Juan, PR 2016 (photo credit Fortuné)

Wet sargassum (just collected from the sea) has about 5 to 7 percent solids content, so 50 to 70 kg of dry algal biomass per metric ton. The fuel value of these organic solids, assuming you just burned them in air, would be about 8 million kilojoules per metric ton. Table 1 offers a rough breakdown of the yields of biogas fuel we can anticipate for every thousand metric tons of fresh sargassum we process, under optimistic and pessimistic assumptions for biogas energy yield. The design basis is a process for converting 1000 metric tons per year of fresh sargassum into biogas and other useful by-products. Since sargassum is only available for three to six months per year (spring through fall), it is more cost-effective to harvest the algae at the peak of its production, convert the raw sargassum into silage for long term storage, and then gassify the silage throughout the entire year in a bioreactor. This permits us to keep the bioreactor in operation year-round, even though the feedstock (sargassum) is available for less than half of the year.


Table 1: Design specifications for a small biogas plant for Haiti

Click to view table


It is clear from these numbers that although sargassum is plentiful in the Caribbean, it could not supply more than a small fraction of the current annual fossil fuel demand of Haiti (7.7M barrels of oil equivalent). Realistically, we could not hope to harvest more than half a million tons of floating sargassum rafts off the Haitian coast (optimistically equivalent to 12,000 BOE of energy). Therefore, although biogas does represent an option for mitigating the serious environmental problems caused by sargassum on the south coast of Haiti, it could only substitute for a small fraction of the total annual fossil fuel energy demand of the country.

However, we have shown that intense cultivation of marine macroalgae off the coasts of PR in aquaculture farms could provide a significant fraction of the total energy demand of PR. Intensive aquaculture of macroalgae has been shown to produce much more biomass per hectare than natural harvests—and there is much data to support this (Roesijadi et al, 2010). Haiti has a great potential for macroalgae aquaculture, given its long coast line and relatively low per capita energy consumption and we would strongly urge Haiti to consider the feasibility of creating a marine aquaculture industry for biomass production for food, fuel, and fine chemicals. Many island jurisdictions have already created vibrant macroalgae industries, and Haiti can do the same.

Building a demonstration plant to convert invasive sargassum into useful biogas could serve as a transition step in the development of a full scale macroalgae biomass industry which would produce not only energy but also food products, fertilizers and other fine chemicals which have a very high market value. Meanwhile, the demonstration plant would allow Haitian scientists and engineers to perfect the technology of biogas production, the safe harvest of sargassum, and later the intensive harvest of commercially grown algal species. The demonstration plant would also serve as a proving ground for the development of the potential high-value by-products which would make the whole operation economically sound, in addition to being enormously beneficial to the coastal environment.


References:

CIA Fact book, 2020 (2016 data) retrived from: IEA.ORG

Theodora.com: Haiti International Rankings 2020

Días-Torres, R. 2021 Sin Rumbo el Manejo del Sargazo en Puerto Rico. Centro de Periodismo Investigativo, 7 Julio, 2021.

Louime, C. Fortune, J.  and Gervais, G.. 2017 Sargassum Invasion of Coastal Environments: A Growing Concern.  Am. J. of Env. Sciences. doi.10.3844/ajessp2017.

Milledge, J.J. & Harvey, P.J. 2016. Golden Tides: Problem or Golden Opportunity? The Valorisation of Sargassum from Beach Inundations. Journal of Marine Science and Engineering, 4, 60.

Roesijadi et al, 2010.  Macroalgae as a Biomass Feedstock: A Preliminary Analysis,  Report # PNNL- 19944 of the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, Washington.

Yong, E. 2019. Why Waves of Seaweed Have Been Smothering Caribbean Beaches

Since 2011, blooms of Sargassum have wreaked havoc on tropical shores. A new study explains why this is likely a new normal. The Atlantic Monthly. July 4, 2019.


Glossary

gassify: A biological or thermochemical process for converting a solid or liquid into a gas. In our laboratory, sargassum seaweed is converted into biogas using a microbial process.

kilojoules (kJ): A common unit of energy.    A liter of gasoline has a heat of combustion of 34,200 KJ of thermal energy or 8170 kilocalories/

Nutraceuticals: Specialized food products of high nutritional value or with medicinal properties.  Many marine products are now being marketed as nutraceuticals.

Sargassum: A large family of brown macroalgae ( more than 100 described species), more than one meter long, which may be found free-floating as large rafts in open waters of the Atlantic (The Great Sargassum Sea).   Some species attach to the bottom substrate in shallow coastal waters.

silage: Raw plant biomass which is allowed to ferment slightly in to permit long-term storage at room temperature without losing nutritional value.


Read more of H.S.A.'s Environmental Blog