Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The never-ending money chase

Last week I finally reconciled all of my accounting from the summer. I brought about $2500 in grant money to Ukenzagapia for fees, supplies, labor, some transportation, etc. I went over that amount by about $550 (expense incurred by me). In addition, I paid about $1250 of my money for my living expenses (this does not include touristy stuff I did with Jon when he was there). Also, I owe Sam about $2000 to be repaid in equipment that I will purchase for him someday.

In short, I need more grant money for my next field season. I've got a few hundred dollars from my interdisciplinary fellowship that I can use for supplies, but I don't even have enough to cover my plane ticket let alone pay my field assistants or the required research fees.

This fall there seem to be only two hopeful prospects on the horizon. One is a UBC award. I emailed Herb to ask him if he'll write a letter for me. He said yes, but if other people from the lab apply, he will favor whomever has the least amount of funding (if he's asked to choose among his students, which he has had to do before). In the past, this has been me since his other students were funded by his grant for Neotropical Field Site. However, they've had some huge unbudgeted expenses that will make it impossible to pay for students next summer. So, I guess we're all in the same boat except that I've already been successful at getting my own money to support my research.

I understand his logic, but it had really dashed my hopes for that grant.


Alexandra said...

His logic makes sense but it sucks. The other students should try as hard as you to get funding; he shouldn't just "reward" them for their lack of effort. Unless they are trying as hard as you and they haven't been successful.

Karina said...

Up until now they haven't needed to try as hard because Herb has had money to pay for many of their research expenses.