Contact Us
Vanessa Christman Assistant Dean
MMUF Administrative Coordinator
Director of Leadership and Community Development
The Pensby Center
(610) 526-6594

Joanna Pinto-Coelho University of Pennsylvania Doctoral Student
MMUF Graduate Assistant

Judy Balthazar Interim Dean of the Undergraduate College
MMUF Coordinator
(610) 526-5375

Current Fellows

Cohort 24:

Serena Pierce

Serena Pierce '15 is a Comparative Literature and Linguistics double-major from New Jersey. Their research will be on the comparative linguistics of Walserdeutsch, an endangered Germanic dialect, as spoken in the Kanton Wallis, Switzerland, where the dialect originated, and Vorarlberg, Austria, where some of the speech community migrated. Their summer will be spent in Berlin improving their German in preparation for fieldwork to be conducted while abroad in Munich in the spring of 2014. Some of their other academic interests include general socio- and historical linguistics, the phonology/cherology and semantics of signed languages, translation theory, prosody in Romantic-era poetry, and stylistics of Ovid’s poetry. Their mentor is Dr Brook Lillehaugen, Assistant Professor in the Tri-College Department of Linguistics, and they will be consulting with Azade Seyhan, Professor of German and Comparative Literature.


Chandrea Peng

Chandrea Peng '15 is an Independent Education Major from Framingham, MA. She will be researching how schools facilitate – or fail to facilitate – development of identity, especially in students for whom the American education system is a challenge – language-wise, culture-wise, and class-wise. She is also interested in exploring the themes of memory and identity in refugees and their children. This summer she will be doing a case management internship at the International Institute of New England in hopes of helping refugees and immigrants become active participants in the social, political, and economic richness of American life. Chandrea will conduct her research under the guidance of Professor David Karen of the Sociology Department and will be studying abroad in Copenhagen in the spring of 2014.

Orsola Capovilla-Searle

Orsola Capovilla-Searle '15 is from Cuernavaca, Mexico and is a Mathematics and Physics double major. She is interested in researching a type of mathematical knot known as Legendrian knots. She is also interested in studying Lagrangian cobordisms bounded by Legendrian knots.

Whitney P. Lopez

Whitney P. Lopez '15: From Brooklyn, NY by way of Philadelphia, PA, Whitney P. López is a McBride scholar and an Anthropology major with a minor in Africana Studies. The focus of their research was originally to analyze the social and cultural factors which affect the job opportunities for women of color living in North Philadelphia. The lack of substantial information on Southeast Asian women prompted Whitney to shift their focus to the social and cultural factors that contribute to the underemployment of Southeast Asian women living in American cities. This summer will consist of compiling empirical data about Southeast Asians living in large cities across the United States.

Esteniolla Maitre

Esteniolla Maitre '15 is a Posse scholar from Boston, MA and an English major with double minors in Education and Africana Studies. Under the mentorship of Professor Linda-Susan Beard of the English department, Esteniolla will pursue research that looks at the relationship between students from inner-city, public school backgrounds and English, as both a language and discipline, in higher education. This summer, she will be in Dalun, Ghana exploring how and in what spaces young people and adults use English.


Cohort 23:

Genesis Bui

Genesis Bui ’14 is from Pomona, CA  and is a Spanish Major. She will be researching the literature of Migration and Immigration in Latin and Hispanic literature. She will be interning this summer with Haverford’s CPGC Partnership Program. She will be working in Mexico City with the Casa de los amigos, a Quaker guesthouse for refugees from Central and South America, and other places around the world. There she will focus her studies on the Central and South American perspective. While on the other hand, Genesis also plans to study abroad in Granada, Spain in order to focus her studies on the African and Asian perspective. Her mentor and major advisor is Professor Maria Cristina Quintero.


Krystal Caban '14 is an English major from Brooklyn, New York. She is interested in examining the popularity of, and paranoia surrounding narratives of "passing" in literature and film. She is also interested in how characters proactively or reactively react to its perceived threat. Krystal is conducting her project under the guidance of Professor Linda Susan Beard of the English department.

Madiha Irfan

Madiha Irfan ’14 of West Chester, PA is majoring in Religion with a concentration in Middle East and Islamic Studies. Her mentors are Professors Travis Zadeh and Tariq al-Jamil. Madiha’s main academic interest is the “gender jihad” and its critical and creative engagement with Qur’an, hadith, and jurisprudence for gender justice in various Muslim worlds. For her project, Madiha plans on exploring premodern Muslim women’s participation in religious education, focusing on female hadith transmitters. Anyone with questions or comments about Madiha’s project is welcome to e-mail her at

Archana Kaku
Archana Kaku is an English and Political Science double major at Bryn Mawr College, with a specific interest in postcolonial studies in the Middle East and South Asia. Her research is focused on how the digital humanities can provide new platforms for minority scholars and the ways in which digital texts create new opportunities for creating and understanding literature from the margins. She is researching ways in which the contemporary concept of the bound book limits minority author's potential for expression with the hopes that the growing world of digital literature can provide a means of redressing these limitations. Her mentor is Dr. Jennifer Harford Vargas, Professor of English at Bryn Mawr.

Karina Siu

Karina Siu ’14 is from Wichita Falls, Texas and is a Political Science major and Economics minor. She is interested in political economy and public policy formation. Karina’s research will focus on ways in which capitalism informs a state’s political structure and its effect on public policies and citizens. While attempting to have a broad comparative look at different states and regions, the majority of her research will focus on the United States, Germany, China, and Russia. With help from her mentor, Professor Carol Hager, Karina hopes to address the following questions: How are those marginalized in society affected by public policies and how much is this effect attributed to the role of capitalism in society? Ultimately, she hopes her research will shed more light on the shortcomings of public policies, possible areas for development, and more discussion for the increased effectiveness of policies and protection for these subjugated groups.