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MMUFs 2015

Cortnie Belser ’15

Cortnie is a native of Baltimore, Maryland. During her time at Swarthmore she has developed a special major in Africana and Educational Studies. Her research interests include youth culture, student narratives, culturally relevant pedagogy, critical race theory, third wave black feminist theory, and the intersectionality of race, class, and gender particularly in youth and secondary school students. She intends to use the support from the MMUF to pursue a PhD in African American/Africana Studies.

Vasomnoleak Ly ’15

‘Leak’ Ly is a senior from Philadelphia, PA. She is a special major in Education and Sociology/Anthropology, and she plans to pursue a PhD in Anthropology. She is particular interested in the issue of language and representation. 

After spending a year in Cambodia as a Fulbright Scholar, Leak is now a PhD student in Sociocultural Anthropology at the University of Michigan. 

Danielle Fitzgerald ’15

Danielle is a Sociology and Anthropology major and Black Studies minor, and she is interested in analyzing the intersections between, and meanings attached to, “Black identity” and “African identity.” Her senior thesis considers how the stories of individuals who share one parent who is African-American and one parent who is African immigrant nuance conceptual frameworks of identity. Danielle currently works as an Admissions Fellow in Swarthmore's admissions office, conducting interviews with applicants. This past summer Danielle worked at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in Harlem, New York as a Schomburg-Mellon Humanities Fellow and then traveled to Lagos, Nigeria to intern at Friends of the Global Fund Africa to help develop the first African Women and Girls Summit in Abuja this October. She is also currently applying for the Watson Fellowship to study the “festivalization” of Africa through analyzing the different ways “Africa” is celebrated, consumed, and imagined around the world. Danielle plans on entering a graduate program in Africana Studies or Diaspora Studies within the next two years. 

María Mejía ’15

María is a History major and Black Studies minor from the Bronx, New York. Her past research has focused on Black activism in the United States during the late-twentieth century and blackness in the Dominican Republic during the colonial era. Her other research interests include Black feminism and womanism, Afro-Latinidad, and urban housing discrimination. 

Mayra Tenorio ’15

Mayra Tenorio is a senior majoring in Sociology & Anthropology with minors in Psychology and Gender & Sexuality Studies. Originally from the Chicago suburbs, Mayra transferred to Swarthmore as a sophomore. This year, she is attempting many firsts: She is a SAM; she is learning to read music; she is taking yoga; and she is taking care of nine plants.