Voices Questions & Answers

Would Centro provide funding for content development for the sections?

Centro provides limited funding for developing the magazine sections, core web pages, and adding content to sections. We will award start up limited grants on a rolling bases for along as funding is available. For this academic year, all expenses must be reported by the end of the fiscal year (June 30). Funding availability for subsequent years is likely but the total amount to be available to groups uncertain. However, in the future, we are committed and expect to devote staff and other resources to the continuation and strengthening of the sections, including the technical support of sections and administrative coordination of groups.

Centro describes Voices as a volunteer opportunity at the moment, will there be potential for compensation for editors and/or contributing writers down the line?

Over time, we expect the site to evolve on an online Puerto Rican studies encyclopedia following the Wikipedia model where content is added by volunteers. Since we operate in a regulated university environment, we need to filter content respecting freedom of opinions, restricting offensive language, blocking partisan political or commercial content, etc. These rules and other magazine policies will be the subject of discussion with those who participate in the project.

What are the prospects for funding of projects that are more costly than the funding available for start-up costs?

Centro is investing on the development of the groups and adding content. As the project evolves, we also expect to lead fundraising efforts to support the magazine. We will make every effort to support the ideas and projects generated from the groups, and will seek the group support in supporting some complementary strategic initiatives such as the Puerto Rican history month, the legacy series about pioneers, the barrios series, and the research exchange.

What types of activities will be considered for funding besides part-time college assistants for administrative support?

Funding will be allocated on case by case bases until we gain a better understanding of the costs and type of activities proposed by the various sections and groups. The examples of ongoing activities may help conceive projects and budgets.

1. We are funding the teaching of a course on the history of Puerto Ricans in New York City and taping the presentations and class discussions. These materials, the syllabus and videos, will be combined in what is called open courseware. These are courses where “all of the educational materials from undergraduate or graduate-level courses are online, free and openly available to anyone.” In this case, two CUNY-affiliated faculty get compensation as adjunct faculty for their work in the course. In addition, our staff will add downloadable readings on the topics of all the content for which Centro has copyrights.

2. We are funding the conversion of the video content that Centro owns into clips of 10-15 minutes with discussion guides for classroom use. The first videos include Plena is Work/Plena is Song and Operation Bootstrap. The faculty working on the project is compensated at the adjunct rates.

3. Centro is supporting a Hunter faculty research project with funding for a college assistant that will result in a mapping of historical places in El Barrio. The idea is to develop and interactive page where the reader can learn about the history of Puerto Ricans in that neighborhoods and the historical sites. Potentially, we will like to go after funding to convert this into an iphone downloadable guide to the neighborhood that everyone can use to learn about the history of the place and the people.

Is there a guaranteed opportunity to continue working on the publication once a fellowship at Centro is complete, and if so, would the fellow become part of the staff, a consultant, etc.?

Centro is funding projects on ongoing bases during this transition period. The potential for continuing as part of Centro’s research exchange depends on several factors. We are currently revising the programs with the goals of consolidating operations and linking funded activities to Centro strategic goals and initiatives. We expect to request proposals yearly and have an evaluation committee that combines internal and external folks for the selection of projects.

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