St. Paul, Minn. – Alvin Kim ’14, from Nashville, Tenn., has been selected as a 2013 Frank Karel Fellow.  This is the first year Macalester was invited to make a nomination. 

The Frank Karel Fellowship Program in Public Interest Communications is a leadership program that places undergraduate students in leading nonprofit organizations that promote the public interest for a hands-on, experiential summer fellowship.

For his fellowship, Kim will be at the YWCA National Capital Area in Washington, D.C., from June 10 – August 24, working toward providing women and their families with programs that foster independence, economic stability and overall well-being.  He feels it’s a great opportunity.

“Over the past few years, I’ve worked both on and off campus in political organizations and non-profit groups that serve highly underrepresented communities, and I’m lucky now to have the opportunity to develop my interests in social justice and equality on a much larger scale,” said Kim. “I will be working with the YWCA of the National Capital Area focusing on eliminating racism and empowering women. My main focus will be in communications and public interest where I’ll work with my mentor determining partnering, programming, and development decisions for the organization.”

Being a Karel Fellow will have an impact on Kim and his studies when he returns to Macalester this fall.

“My studies at Macalester have always had a profound effect on my professional pursuits both on and off campus,” said Kim.  “My hope is to use my academic knowledge of institutional, political, and social inequalities to aid my nonprofit work with communities of color this summer. Similarly, I am confident that my experience as a Frank Karel Fellow will greatly complement my studies in applying communication and management skills to an academic setting. Macalester has always pushed me to combine my passion for academia with my goals of serving specific marginalized communities. This summer I plan to do just that.” 

The Karel Fellowship honors and advances the legacy of Frank Karel, who established, led and nurtured the field of strategic communications during his 30 years as chief communications officer for the Robert Wood Johnson and Rockefeller Foundations.  Among Karel’s strong beliefs was that racial and ethnic minorities were underrepresented in the public interest communications field and that foundations and public interest organizations needed to be proactive in recruiting and nurturing broader participation and leadership in public interest communications and advocacy.

Each Fellow will receive a stipend of $4,000 to cover housing, travel, and living expenses during the fellowship.

Macalester College, founded in 1874, is a national liberal arts college with a full-time enrollment of 2,035 students. Macalester is nationally recognized for its long-standing commitment to academic excellence, internationalism, multiculturalism, and civic engagement. Learn more at

March 28 2013

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