Princeton senior Emily Sánchez received a scholarship from ReachOut 56-81-06, an alumni-funded effort that supports one-year public service projects after graduation. Sánchez will develop a series of podcasts on the history of Latino communities in New Jersey.
The project, “Podcasting History: An Opportunity to Bring Latino Voices Inside New Jersey’s History Classrooms,” will be designed to diversify voices in high school history curricula and to help teachers cover the learning objectives required by New Jersey Social Studies Learning Standards. Sánchez will work with the New Jersey Hispanic Research Information Center at the Newark Public Library.
ReachOut will provide a stipend of $35,000 to pay for living expenses during their fellowship year.
Sánchez, a history concentrator pursuing certificates in Latin American Studies and Latin American Studies, grew up in Clifton and Paterson, New Jersey. She was inspired to conceive the podcast project due to a lack of representation from her own Peruvian-American community in her high school history curriculum and library archives.
“I’m a first-generation Peruvian-American,” Sánchez said. “My mother (from the Cajamarca region of Peru) immigrated to New Jersey in the 1990s and my father (from the Ancash region) in the late 1980s. I have always felt very connected to my Peruvian heritage due to the strong Peruvian community in Passaic County.
Although the podcasts are designed for high school students, the series will be available through the Newark Public Library and the New Jersey Hispanic Research Information Center to make the history of Latin American migrant communities in New Jersey accessible to a larger number of audiences.
Trisha Thorme, director of the Community Scholarship Program (ProCES), said the ReachOut Fellowship will allow Sánchez to share her research on Peruvian-American history widely.
“Emily’s unwavering commitments to marginalized communities and the discipline of history were evident in our very first meeting,” Thorme said. “She spoke passionately about the Peruvian community in Paterson, New Jersey, and the power of scholarship, in the form of an oral history project, to improve lives.”
Sánchez’s main thesis also explores the history rooted in his hometown. Titled “Dismantling Urban Development,” the dissertation explores how working-class people of color in Paterson spearheaded affordable housing construction and housing policy design in the 1960s and 1970s.
Sánchez said she hopes to become an academic historian who continues to diversify curricula.
“After the ReachOut Fellowship, I hope to continue studying Latin American history in college and eventually teach history at the college level,” she said. “I hope to continue my collaborations with teachers and researchers, with the aim of diversifying history programs across the country.
Associate history professor Rosina Lozano said Sánchez has been an “outstanding” student since her freshman year at Princeton. Lozano advised Sánchez’s junior newspaper on Peruvian immigrants in Paterson and taught him several classes. Sánchez also worked for Lozano as a research assistant.
“Emily has the analytical mind of a historian and she has become a very successful freelance scholar,” Lozano said. “She has an incredible ability to analyze and make connections between historical documents.”
Lozano added that Sánchez’s undergraduate research has gone a long way in documenting the history of Peruvian immigrants to New Jersey.
“Emily’s junior article examines how Peruvians have changed their perception of Paterson and Peru over several decades,” Lozano said. “She has conducted in-depth interviews, even during the pandemic, and has taken the initiative to ensure that others will benefit from the words of these early Peruvian immigrants by working with the public library to host the interviews after completing the research. .”
Sánchez received the Shelby Cullom Davis Award for Independent Research from the Department of History and was published in “Americas: The John Hopkins Academic journal of Latin American studies. She also received the TUMI USA Achievement Award for her contributions to the Peruvian-American community of Paterson and Clifton, New Jersey.
His research and service work includes roles at Princeton as Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellow, ProCES Derian Fellow, and John C. Bogle Fellow in Civic Service. She was also a member of the Service Focus program at the Pace Center for Civic Engagement.
A residential college counselor at Mathey College, Sánchez was an ESL tutor at El Centro in Trenton, a member of the Latin American Student Association, and a summer counselor for students at the SEEDS Scholars Program in Newark, who aid low-income, high-achieving college students enroll in independent schools.