A young woman from District 5420 (Utah) has been awarded one of 50 worldwide Rotary International Peace Fellow sponsorships for a master’s degree in Peace and Conflict resolution at International Christian University in Tokyo, Japan. The award, including tuition, room & board, and language instruction is worth over US$90,000.
“Elizabeth Gamarra is one of those rare individuals whose inner light and compassion guide her to create powerful and significant ways to serve,” says Salt Lake Rotarian Mike Deputy, District Peace Committee Chair in the endorsement letter. “Her intuitive need to do good was established early and is clearly her lifelong path. The faster she receives training at a high level, the more quickly she will rise to doing truly great things in this world.”
Elizabeth has already done some great things with her life.
Born in Lima, Perú and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah, she receive a Bachelor of Social Work and then a Masters from the University’s College of Social Work with an emphasis in Global Women’s Health. Her accomplishments are broad for someone so young:
- Elizabeth founded the non-profit, “Generations of Latinos,” the Academic Journal for Mentorship Across Cultures and Disciplines and the MentorMe® Project – platforms to help thousands of students seize best education, career and activism related opportunities. Now, with an online network of 1,000 tutors and mentors, students have won more than $1 M USD in financial aid and scholarships.
- Her work as Utah’s Student Activist Coordinator for Amnesty International USA, researcher at the Center for Research on Migration and Refugee Integration (CRMRI), and founder of the non-profit Generations of Latinos in Higher Education, have provided her a broad and comprehensive understanding of the challenges rooted in integration, conflict, economic inequality, and education; particularly in communities of color.
- Elizabeth is a former TEDxSaltLakeCity speaker: A Uniting Journey of Perspectives: Human Mobility,” and most recently spoke at the University of Oxford Consortium for Human Rights on climate justice and eradicating poverty.
- Her contributions have been recognized through Diversity and Equity University of Utah Award, the Outstanding Researcher Award in 2015 and 2016, the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA) Graduate Award, the Utah Young Philanthropy Award, and most recently the 2017 Martin Luther King Jr. Drum Major Award through the Utah Human Rights Commission.
- Elizabeth is currently on a Fulbright Grant to teach and do research at the Instituto de Empresa (IE) University of Madrid and Segovia in Spain.
After graduate school, she looks forward to continuing the advancement of human rights and wishes to work on the design of new and viable policies that can lead developing countries, such as her own, down a path of equal opportunity, growth, and justice. She hopes to pursue a Juris Doctorate and a Latin Legum Magister (LLM) in Human Rights, focused on capacity building for refugees and peace building efforts within host and neighboring countries.
Elizabeth writes in her application, “My culturally diverse background has filled me with pride to never forget where I come from and reach back to help those around me through the doors of opportunity.”