Mellon Foundation Spotlights Graduating MMUF Fellows' Stories

July 16, 2021

A special feature published on the Mellon Foundation's website spotlights the stories of five MMUF fellows from the class of 2021 who are graduating from college in an exceptionally difficult academic year that has upended many of academia's operating assumptions and complicated the plans of many individual students. "What it's like to graduate -- and look ahead to a PhD or master's -- during a pandemic" features reflections on the recent past and coming year by graduating fellows from a range of disciplines and institutions. Joshua Acosta, a history major at California State University at Long Beach, will enter a PhD program in ethnic studies at the University of California this fall. Marie Tano (pictured above), graduating from Pomona College with a B.A. in linguistics, will enter a PhD program in the same field at Stanford. Otshepeng Lelaka, after completing an undergraduate degree in philosophy at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, will pursue an honors degree there in the same field in the fall. Aida Revilla, an interdisciplinary liberal arts major at the University of New Mexico, will pursue a master's degree in social sciences at the University of Chicago. And Tania Nasrollahi, graduating from UCLA with a B.A. in sociology and anthropology, will pursue a PhD in sociology at Indiana University in the fall.

The Mellon Foundation salutes the exceptional hard work, resilience, and creativity of these and all MMUF fellows during this extraordinary moment. To the class of 2021, congratulations on your achievements, and warm wishes for success and fulfillment in your post-graduation plans, wherever they may take you!