The Journal of Sport for Development is delighted to announce Dr. Jennifer Jacobs has been selected as the 2021 JSFD Early Career Scholar Award recipient. The annual award, established in 2019, recognizes an early career JSFD author in recognition of significant scholarly contributions to the sport for development field.
Dr. Jennifer Jacobs is an assistant professor of Sport and Exercise Psychology at Northern Illinois University. Her current research examines the role that sport and physical activity play in fostering equity and psychosocial growth, with a particular focus on serving youth from marginalized populations. She has developed or evaluated sport programs in diverse settings such as afterschool clubs, summer camps, professional sports organizations, and juvenile detention centers in the United States, Belize, and Sri Lanka.
Currently, she is the co-director and co-founder of Project FLEX, a fitness leadership program within Illinois youth prisons that uses the power of sport to teach life skills to incarcerated youth. She also has consulted with a variety of Chicago-area organizations such as the Chicago Fire Foundation and Beyond the Ball.
An emerging scholar with a focus on community-based work, Dr. Jacobs has over 30 research publications and 50 national/international conference presentations. She received the 2020 Exceptional Contributions to Diversity and Social Justice Award from the Northern Illinois University College of Education as well as the 2020 Young Alumni Award from the University of Illinois College of Applied Health Sciences. She is honored to be recognized by the Journal of Sport for Development and credits her mentors and community partners for helping support her work.
The evaluation process was overseen by the JSFD Early Career Scholar Award Committee. At least two committee members reviewed each nomination and all committee members evaluated nominations considered on the short list of finalists. Any member of the award committee who declared a conflict of interest with a particular candidate was excluded from providing an evaluation for that candidate, and other committee members or additional evaluations were utilized to undertake the review process.
Early Career Scholar Award Committee
Cora Burnett, Award Committee Chair, University of Johannesburg
Ollie Dudfield, Commonwealth Secretariat
Iain Lindsey, Durham University
Chiaki Okada, Osaka University
Nico Schulenkorf, University of Technology Sydney
Marielle Schweickart, Women Win
Emma Sherry, Swinburne University
To learn more about the award or find out if you qualify for future nomination, please visit the JSFD Early Career Scholar Award page.