Friends of the International Mathematical Union
201 Charles Street
Providence, RI 02904

Graduate Research Assistantships in Developing Countries (GRAID)

The IMU/CDC is launching GRAID, GRaduate Assistantships In Developing countries to allow graduate students to study mathematics full-time when no other fellowships are available. A detailed description of this program can be found here on the CDC page.

Human talent, determination, and interest in mathematics are most probably randomly distributed throughout the youth of this world, but the opportunity to realize the promise made possible by those human attributes definitely is not.

In quite a few developing countries, there are universities and mathematical centers with the intellectual resources to offer rigorous mathematical preparation at the Masters Degree or, in some cases, at the Doctoral Degree level. Also, despite the very uneven professional prospects for mathematicians, there is often no dearth of young and talented students of mathematics eager to become mathematicians

On the other hand, in many, if not most, developed countries graduate study of mathematics is supported by governments, universities and research institutes, and by private foundations. The story in many parts of the developing world is quite different. Graduate assistantships do not exist. Even teaching assistantships are not possible because all university teaching of mathematics is done by faculty needing to cobble together a living wage from income based entirely on the amount of teaching that they do.

To earn a meager living, a graduate student in Cameroon may be teaching in a village high school several hours away by bus from the university where his or her graduate study is relegated to evenings and weekends. In Cambodia, a student preparing for graduate study in mathematics may have only class time to work on mathematics, because the rest of the day is consumed with odd jobs just to make ends meet.

We appeal to established mathematicians interested in extending the possibility of professional accomplishment to young mathematical talent in emerging nations

Given the student’s capacity to pursue mathematics and difficult circumstances that often impede or prevent further study, would you be willing to help one of these students?

IMU will “match-make” and assure distribution on the basis of mathematical merit and fairness. That is, through our years of contact with mathematicians and mathematical centers in the developing world, we have identified, and continue to identify, young people in quality graduate degree programs in emerging nations, students who are equally talented and equally passionate about mathematics as most of us were at the same age and stage. Without breaching confidentiality, we can connect you as a potential donor to the circumstance of one or several of these students. We can give you the opportunity to decide the nature of your donation to the student of your choice, anonymous or not, studying a field related to your own or not, in a region of the world of special interest to you or not.

In the countries that are the focus of GRAID, GRaduate Assistantships In Developing countries, assistantships that would allow graduate students to study mathematics full-time require between 1,000 and 3,500 US dollars a year. – More details are here on the CDC site. Full or partial contributions to assistantship support of this magnitude are most welcome. Professional mathematicians with the means to respond to this appeal are encouraged to …

Donations made through the 501(c)(3) organization Friends of IMU. are tax deductible in the U.S.