The Graduate School Exploration Fellowship (GSEF) Program, funded by a generous grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, is intended to increase the number of underrepresented students who pursue graduate study, research, and/or teaching careers in higher and post-secondary education.

Each year, Macalester selects up to two talented sophomores, through 2020, to participate in the program.

Comparing MMUF, GSEF and GradX

Program Benefits

  • On-campus mentoring opportunities from Macalester College faculty and staff
  • Participation in two Annual Summits in Chicago in each summer of the program
  • A paid summer research opportunity following their junior year at a Big Academic Alliance Institution or the University of Chicago
  • Graduate school visit assistance funds during senior year (up to $1,000 per Fellow) and assistance for scholarly-related activities (up to $250 per Fellow, per year)

Applying to the Program

The application is a .pdf form that you can complete digitally or handwritten. Included with the application, in separate documents, should be a statement of research interests (500-1000 words), a personal statement (500-1200 words), and an unofficial transcript, You will also need to submit two letters of recommendation, which the writers can e-mail directly to Matthew Katsaros. When you have completed your GSEF application, please e-mail all pieces to Matthew Katsaros in the Annan IGC Dean’s Office (

You can read more about the essays in the GSEF Application Guide 2020.

To submit a Letter of Recommendation the writer should email it directly to Matthew Katsaros (

Download the GSEF Application.

Applications are due by 5:00PM, Friday, March 13, 2020.

Selection Criteria

All qualified sophomores from groups underrepresented in the professoriate are encouraged to apply, including:

  • African Americans; Hispanics; Native Americans; Alaska Natives; Native Hawaiians; other Pacific Islanders
  • First-generation college students
  • Individuals who have followed non-traditional pathways to college due to exceptional talent and motivation in the face of adversity, such as societal, economic or academic disadvantages
  • Individuals with a demonstrated commitment to applying and including diverse backgrounds and perspectives to learning, scholarship, service and leadership in the academy

Additionally, students must meet the following criteria for eligibility:

  • Be a U.S. citizen, a permanent resident of the U.S., or DACA student
  • A cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher at the time of application
  • Have a strong interest in pursuing graduate work in the humanities, humanistic social sciences, and/or the arts

Eligible Fields of Study

Anthropology and Archaeology
Area/Cultural/Ethnic/Gender Studies
Communications and Journalism
Foreign Languages and Literatures
Library and Archival Studies
Political Science
Religion and Theology

Learn More: Graduate School Exploration Fellowship (GSEF) Web Page

Current Fellows

Class of 2021

  • Nancy Gomez, psychology and educational studies
  • Swopnil Shrestha, educational studies and political science

Class of 2020

  • Cristina Martin, psychology and educational studies

GSEF Alumni

Class of 2019

  • Min Hee Cho, political science and economics
  • Umar Hassan, political science
  • Cameron Hill, sociology and hispanic studies
  • Micheala Sharp, computer science and classics and media & cultural studies

Class of 2018

  • Ashanté Alford, psychology/neuroscience
  • Cecilia Caro, anthropology and educational studies
  • Giselle Lora, anthropology and Latin American studies
  • Allegra Wyatt, psychology and anthropology


Any questions should be directed to:

Faculty Coordinator
Arthur Mitchell
Assistant Professor, Asian Languages and Cultures
(651) 696-6276

Administrative Coordinator
Matthew Katsaros
Staff Assistant, Kofi Annan Institute for Global Citizenship
(651) 696-6382