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Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship Program

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For sophomores who are committed as future professors to address the educational consequences of racial and ethnic disparities in higher education.


Campus Deadline

The preliminary deadline is at the end of winter quarter. The final deadline is the second Monday of spring quarter.

Award covers

  • Up to $10,000 undergraduate loan repayment
  • Term-time stipend for research
  • Support for summer research
  • Faculty mentoring and structured programming
  • Additional financial support for expenses related to pursuit of graduate degree
  • Membership in a lifetime community of Fellows

More Information

Eligibility Criteria

  • Interest in a college or university teaching career
  • Demonstrated commitment to diversity broadly defined, including race and ethnicity, in relation to underrepresentation in designated fields of study
  • Exceptional scholarly promise in one of the Mellon-designated fields of study
  • Intention to matriculate in a PhD program
  • US citizen or permanent resident
  • Availability for personal interview

How to Apply

  1. Visit the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship website.
  2. Submit the following materials to Laura Selznick.
    • A cover sheet that includes:
      • Name
      • Address(es) (campus, summer, and/or permanent)
      • Phone number
      • Declared or prospective major
      • Names of reference writers
      • Waiver granting permission to share your official transcript with the campus selection committee and the Mellon Foundation
    • Three letters of recommendation including at least two written by faculty familiar with your work
    • One-page personal essay relating your academic and career goals to the legacy of Dr. Benjamin E. Mays.
      • This essay should describe other activities that demonstrate your ability to take responsibility, work, independently, and show initiative or perseverance.
      • A biography of Dr Benjamin E. Mays can be found at the MMUF website.
    • Two to three-page essay on one of the following topics:
      • Your academic interests, the area you plan to study in depth, and why
      • An academic experience that has motivated you toward advanced study
      • A situation in which you felt like a scholar: What intellectual experience or scholarly discovery inspired you?

Additional Resources

You are strongly encouraged to consult with your faculty mentors about the application, and to meet with the campus liaison.

Make an appointment with Laura Selznick, the MMUF campus liaison