NJSAA Announces Mappen Student Research Grant Winners

Melissa Ziobro's picture

NJSAA Announces Mappen Student Research Grant Winners

The New Jersey Studies Academic Alliance (NJSAA) is pleased to announce the March 2023 winners of its Mappen Student Research Grant, which supports work on any aspect of New Jersey studies. This $300 grant is open to both high school and college students (undergraduate and graduate).

Selection criteria included originality of the work, the project’s relevance to the New Jersey Studies community and/or to the community in New Jersey on which the project focuses, and the project’s research design: feasibility, objectives, outline of major topics, plan of work, public access, and archiving plans.

Our March 2023 winners are as follows:

Reagan Miller, Monmouth University graduate student

The long-term goal of Reagan's project is to create and standardize a data dictionary using the Trimble TDC150 to produce interactive maps via ArcMap, and GIS, that allows anthropologists and archaeologists, specifically within cultural resource management (CRM), to collect data in cemeteries precisely and efficiently. In the near-term, Reagan will survey the Old Methodist Church cemetery in Toms River, New Jersey, and provide the Ocean County Historical Society a completed digital database and interactive map to add to their website and make the work accessible to the public.

Gavin Wagner, Rutgers University undergraduate student

Gavin's project is called, "Finding Historic Streams of the Lower Raritan Watershed." Since its inception in the Fall of 2021, Gavin has used landscape ecology, geographical information systems, and historical hydrology to better understand the natural and cultural history of the Lower Raritan Watershed.  Where are streams today? Where have they historically been? Why do changes occur? What are the implications of these changes? To date, Gavin has analyzed 172 maps, georeferenced 53 maps, and digitized 345 individual stream segments. He plans to make this work publicly accessible with his Mappen funding. 

All 2023 winners will discuss their work at the February 2024 meeting of the NJSAA. 

The grant is named in honor of Marc Mappen, former executive director of the New Jersey Historical Commission and a legend in the field of New Jersey studies. Mr. Mappen died on Sunday, January 6, 2019 “having spent most of his life, and a great deal of his energy, working on and promoting the history of the state. He was the author of numerous articles and books, a frequent speaker who delighted in telling humorous offbeat stories about people and places, a public scholar and servant, and good friend to a great many people.” You can read more about Marc here

Mappen Student Research Grant applications are accepted in October and March. See more about the application process here.

Questions can be addressed to Melissa Ziobro, Chair, NJSAA Mappen Student Research Grant Committee, mziobro@monmouth.edu