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City College Fellowships Program

South Africa Program

Mellon Mays Fellows at South Africa Program


Four Mellon Mays Fellows Participate in South Africa Program

During January, four CCNY seniors, Rene Cordero (History), Shanna Jean-Baptiste (French), Emmanuel Lachaud (History), and Debra Williams (English) participated in a nine-day learning program in Cape Town, South Africa sponsored by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and hosted by the University of Cape Town. All four students are Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellows (MMUF) who aspire to pursue doctoral degrees in preparation for academic careers.

They describe their experience as follows: "The Cape Town program forced us to develop a more critical understanding of voice, location, and citizenship as a step toward becoming agents of social transformation.  In the process, we learned that academics and educators must enmesh themselves in communities and explore the world beyond just books and articles.  The beautiful city of Cape Town makes painfully visible the legacies of colonialism and apartheid; the city's residents, while gracious hosts, made us face many complex questions about inequality, privilege, and the social responsibilities of universities and scholars."