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College of Arts and Sciences

Two doctoral students selected for Liebmann fellowships

By: Katya Hrichak ,  Cornell Chronicle
August 21, 2019

Two doctoral students, Stephen Roblin in the field of government and Laura Leddy in the field of anthropology, have been selected as recipients of the Dolores Zohrab Liebmann Fellowship.

Liebmann fellowships are designed to support graduate students who are U.S. citizens with outstanding undergraduate records, demonstrated need for financial assistance and outstanding character with promise for achievement in their fields.

Roblin’s research focuses on how civilian deaths in foreign countries caused by the U.S. military affect American public support for war. In his work, Roblin collaborates with Research 4 Impact, an organization that facilitates the exchange of findings between researchers and practitioners.

“For me, the importance of the project is measured in terms of impact,” Roblin said. “My ultimate goal is to assist activists, human rights organizations and U.S. policymakers working to prevent and minimize wartime civilian harm by the U.S. military.”

Leddy’s research spans the fields of anthropology and archaeology, seeking to answer questions of memory, repair and water management in cities from the medieval period to the present.

“I’m interested in sustainability, as both a philosophy and as a practice of daily life: how approaches to maintenance and sustainability in the past have shaped the landscapes that we’ve inherited today, and will in turn shape how we live in the future,” Leddy said. “As climate change intensifies, I think it’s essential that problem-solving around climate change mitigation is not only a project of the hard sciences. Culture, memory and history need to be a part of this conversation, as well. I would like my work to help build this bridge.”

The fellowship provides the cost of tuition and an additional $18,000 stipend, and qualifies for supplementation under Cornell’s external fellowship “top-off” policy. Recipients’ stipends are increased to base academic year stipend rate and are credited the full cost of the student health plan.

Roblin and Leddy are the first Cornell graduate students to be named Liebmann fellows since anthropology doctoral student Gabrielle Borenstein in 2016 and natural resources alumna Ingrid Biedron in 2009. A total of 15 fellows were selected this year.

For more information on the fellowship, visit the List of External Fellowships page on the Graduate School website.

Katya Hrichak is a communications assistant in the Graduate School.

This story also appeared in the Cornell Chronicle.