Emerging Leaders in Anthropology Award Program

The National Association of Student Anthropologists (NASA), a section of the American Anthropological Association announces the 2018 Emerging Leaders in Anthropology Program (ELAP). We welcome students to submit targeted applications for one of two program spots. Program participants will receive training in contemporary issues in anthropology on this year’s selected tracks, mentoring from anthropologists engaged in participants’ area of interest, and will have the opportunity to attend a special meeting at the 2018 AAA Annual Meeting in San Jose, California.

Program contents


— $500 toward expenses for attendance at the AAA conference.;

— free membership to the National Association of Student Anthropologists;

— Refund the conference fees within the award check for AAA conference.


Mentoring and professional training paper

— pairing with a senior anthropologist;

— production of a professional research training paper (PTP);

— students are free to use their PTPs as they see fit, but a special arrangement may be possible with Student Anthropologist, subject to approval by the journal’s editorial board.

  1. Eligibility
  2. i) Any student, ii) regardless of nationality, iii) enrolled at least half-time in a program in anthropology (major, minor, concentration or interdisciplinary area where the focus is anthropology), iv) having completed at least two years of tertiary education at the time of application, and v) able to travel to the AAA meeting in San Jose, California in November 2018.

Current officers of the National Association of Student Anthropologists and partnering sections are ineligible to apply.


III. Professional training paper topics

Student shall have the opportunity to produce an original piece of research during the program with the assistance of participating mentors on a contemporary topic in anthropology. Students will have several months after the completion of the AAA meeting to work on this paper, and may have an opportunity for publication.


Track 1, Social theory across disciplinary, subfield and national traditions: students in this track are asked to address their professional training paper toward issues related to anthropological practices across spatial, cultural, and topical dimensions. Students should scrutinize the relationship of these dimensions to the historic and contemporary differences and similarities of disparate bodies of theory. How, for example, have positivist paradigms informed some research programs while being rejected in others? Why have certain ‘national’ traditions of anthropology taken the shape that they have?


Track 2, Perspectives on anthropology as discipline, career, and identity: much has been written on the self-situating of the anthropologist, both as this relates to methodological considerations and as a source of anthropological insight. Professional organization and practices in anthropology across the subfields are often linked to identity, as is the choice to pursue a career in anthropology. Students in this track are asked to consider contemporary theory alongside their own experiences on a topic related to anthropology as a discipline, career, and identity.

Application procedure

To apply, please upload an unofficial transcript, a current resume or CV, and a 500 word statement. You will also need to arrange for a letter of recommendation supporting your application to be emailed independently to students.anthropology@gmail.com.

All application materials must be submitted via email to students.anthropology@gmail.com by August 1, 2018 11:59PM EST.

Personal statement 

Applicants will need to write a brief statement of no more than 500 words specifying why you would like to participate in the program, your professional plans after completing your education, your research interests, and a preliminary indication of the concerns within the track you have selected that you intend to address in your professional training paper.

Letter of recommendation

A letter of recommendation should be sent to students.anthropology@gmail.com with the subject ‘Your Name, ELAP 2018 letter of rec’ (for example: Jane Smith, ELAP 2018 letter of rec).

Basis of selection

Applicants will be selected for achievement at their respective levels (undergraduate, master, doctoral) based on the following criteria:

— academic performance and intellectual maturity;

— demonstrated leadership;

— commitments and engagements outside of formal education, including community and political activism and professional service;

— demonstrated knowledge of contemporary issues within the track chosen (engaged/activist anthropology or world anthropologies).


Applicants will be notified by October 1, 2018.

For queries and further information, please contact the 2018 Awards Committee Chair (Peter Lee) at students.anthropology@gmail.com.

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