MLK Fellows come from all backgrounds and have varied interests. They are focused on developing their leadership skills and giving back to the community.
Genevieve Brown ’20 is a senior from California majoring in anthropology and minoring in legal studies. She found out about Brandeis on a whim and wanted to have an adventure far from home. It turned out to be an excellent choice as Brandeis has been a way to meet amazing people as well as pursue opportunities that have a positive impact on others through promoting social justice.
Genevieve spends the beginning of fall semester of each year as an orientation leader. She acts as a resource to help new students with the transition to college. Additionally, Genevieve makes time to give back to the community as a Waltham Group’s TAPS program volunteer where she tutors and assists students in elementary school, especially English learners.
In spring 2019, Genevieve studied abroad in Lisbon, Portugal which has been the highlight of her college career. It was a great way to take in a new culture and language, continue her degree, and learn about vast perspectives. After college, she is considering Law School or working as an instructor because she is passionate about youth enrichment as well as civil rights and equality. She is participating in the one-week Advanced Advocacy Program with the ACLU this summer in D.C. in order to gain experience for lifelong engagement in grassroots organizing, policy development and legal advocacy.
Ahmad Samad ’20 is a senior double-majoring in biology and Health: Science, Society, and Policy on the prehealth track. After leaving his home state of Florida, Ahmad chose to attend Brandeis in search of a university that would provide him with both strong scientific understanding and interpersonal skills necessary to one day become a successful physician.Throughout his Brandeis career, Ahmad has spent a great amount of time Shapiro Science Center, whether that be in preparation for class, instructing students as a CHEM 29 teaching assistant, or working as a laboratory assistant in the Garrity Lab. In addition, he has taken on the role of tutor/mentor for LaCE, a Waltham Group program that helps local middle school students struggling with English as a second language in hopes of increasing their speaking abilities and confidence. Ahmad has also had the privilege of participating in several internships he hopes will better hone his skills in pursuit of medicine, including SHPEP at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital. Aside from academics and volunteering, Ahmad likes to unwind by utilizing Brandeis’ Gosman Sports and Convocation Center or partaking in non-affiliated Greek life activities on and off campus. This year he is also serving as a Roosevelt Fellow, which are peer academic advisors.
After college, Ahmad plans on waiting a few years before applying to medical school. During this time, he hopes to either pursue a master’s degree in either Nutrition or Biomedical Sciences or work full-time locally in Boston. Being an MLK Fellow has not only provided him with the support system necessary for success as a pre-health student, but it has also allowed him to realize that no matter your background, if there is a will there is a way.
Kyra Frazier ’21 was raised in Atlanta and discovered Brandeis in the midst of her college search process. After she found out that she was a recipient of the MLK Fellowship, she began to fall more in love with the school, especially given its history of social justice. It only took one visit to campus for her to know that Brandeis was going to be her home for the next four years of her life.
Kyra was able to hone in on her interest for different cultures after taking an introductory course in Anthropology, one year later, she declared her major in anthropology and is now looking forward to taking more courses to broaden her knowledge. She also has been able to develop new perspectives about her own identity as a Black woman through navigating life at a PWI and taking enhancing courses from well-known professors in African and African American studies, like department chair Chad Williams and former professor Abdur-Rahman.
During Kyra's time at Brandeis she has been able to participate in many different clubs, leadership positions, and community outreach. She worked at the Office of Student Financial Services for two years, giving students and parents advice and information about financial aid affairs at Brandeis. Additionally, she is a member of the Platinum Step Team and current president of the Women of Color Alliance. Her community outreach includes service activities with the MLK Fellows as well as volunteering with the Waltham Group’s Companions 2 Elders program.
She has served for two years on the MLK Fellows Advisory Board, where she is able to plan service and bonding events for the fellowship, in addition to being a “buddy” to a freshman MLK Fellow. The MLK Fellowship has provided Kyra with a stable group of peers, friends and advisers who are endlessly supportive and make Brandeis truly feel like home away from home.