Staff and students scholarships success
Santander Scholarships 2015 winners and organisers

A research project looking at how children with Asperger syndrome regulate their emotions is one of more than 20 from Plymouth University to receive funding through a global education initiative.

Post-doctoral psychology student Belen Lopez Perez will be funded to look at the link between empathy and emotion regulation thanks to the Santander Universities Scholarship programme, which encourages staff and students to develop research and language exchange projects that will enhance future opportunities.

This is Belen’s second funding success through the programme, which offers cash rewards of amounts from £200 to £5,000. She used the first grant to work on a similar project involving adults in collaboration with her Spanish counterparts at the University of Burgos. She said:

“I am delighted to have been given another chance to secure more funding as this will allow me to continue working with my international colleagues and expand my research to include children.”

Other projects include a trip to Southern Cuba for students Kareem Charlette and David Gamboa-Chavez, where they will participate in the internationally renowned biological and conservation management programme Operation Wallacea, and a chance for Huirong Le, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering, to experiment with bamboo and make sustainable wind and marine turbines.

Professor David Coslett, Interim Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive, said: 

 “We welcome this continuing partnership with Santander Universities. These international collaborations create opportunities for our staff and students to embark on joint research and teaching projects, taking our expertise to new territories and helping us to learn from others.”

The philanthropic Santander Universities funding is offered in three categories: Internationalisation, for staff and students to undertake research at a fellow Santander University anywhere in the world; Iberamerican, open to undergraduates and postgraduates who wish to carry out research/work based learning at a fellow Santander University; and Seed Corn scholarships which enable postgraduates and staff to undertake research related to their studies or teaching at Plymouth University.

Emma Parker, University Relationship Branch Manager at the Santander branch on the Plymouth University campus, said: 

“Plymouth is already seeing benefits from the funding including initiatives which promote volunteering and the development of employability skills and we look forward to supporting many more entrepreneurial projects through the scheme.”