Jessica Allen

Jessica Allen wins fellowship to study aboard in London in Summer 2019

City College of San Francisco (CCSF) announced today that student Jessica Allen is the recipient of the Frederick Douglass Global Fellowship, and will be studying leadership development and intercultural communications in London this coming summer. All of her expenses will be covered by the Council International Educational Exchange (CIEE)

“My objective is to conduct empirical research of the historical links in London’s race relations and how that connects to reproductive health today,” said Jessica Allen, who will be transferring to a four-year college this fall. “This fellowship will enhance my leadership skills so I can apply what I learned as an Ethnic Studies major at CCSF to a different cultural context. Now I have the unique opportunity to learn about the most pressing issues that impact public and human rights of London’s marginalized populations. I look forward to being a part of a vibrant academic community that is committed to inter-sectional solutions, interventions, and advocacy.”

Jessica Allen identifies as a Queer Afro-Latinx mother, a doula and a visionary scholar with a relentless determination to ignite her communities towards large-scale revolution and intergenerational healing. At seventeen, she became a certified doula from her studies at the Natural Birth Institute in San Francisco. Through this work, she has proudly supported over 100 births in her community and addressed chronic stress, social isolation and emotional hardship within her practice.

She has been in service to some of San Francisco Bay Area’s most disenfranchised populations (LGBTQ youth, formerly incarcerated people, and women’s reproductive health) for over a decade. In 2014, she launched Mamahood Revolution, a doula initiative in which she facilitates healthy pregnancy, birth, and postpartum workshops. She is majoring in Ethnic Studies at CCSF and is on an educational path to earn a Juris Doctorate in Civil Rights law, with the intent to serve under-resourced populations. As a future civil rights attorney, her mission is to pioneer initiatives and policy changes for marginalized pregnant and parenting LGBTQ+ families.

The fellowship required an application with a YouTube video that addressed questions such as objectives for a study abroad program, an essay, and a letter of recommendation from the Chancellor’s Office. CCSF’s Office of Grant and Resource Development conducted outreach to the college community, and when Ms. Allen expressed interest in the fellowship, the Office assisted her throughout her application process.

In 2015, the Council International Educational Exchange (CIEE) and the Penn Center for Minority Serving Institutions (CMSI) launched the Frederick Douglass Global Fellowship program to provide scholarships for the most financially challenged students from the nation’s nearly 600 Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs). Each year, scholarship funds cover 100 percent of program fees and travel costs for 10 students from these MSIs. Each cohort takes part in a summer study abroad program designed to enhance their leadership and intercultural skills in one of two locations: London, England or Cape Town, South Africa. CMSI awards the study abroad scholarships annually based on a combination of financial need, academic achievement, and nominations from students’ MSI presidents.

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