About the Mellon Program

Andrew W. Mellon Foundation was established as a nonprofit philanthropic organization in June of 1969 with a mission to "aid and promote such religious, charitable, scientific, literary, and educational purposes as may be in the furtherance of the public welfare or tend to promote the well-doing or well-being of mankind." In 1988, under this broad charter, the Foundation made a long-term commitment to help remedy the serious shortage of faculty of color in higher education through the Mellon Minority Undergraduate Fellowship (MMUF) program.

In 2003, the Foundation reaffirmed its commitment and broadened the mission of MMUF. The name of the program was changed to the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship program, to symbolically connect the mission to the stellar educational achievements of Dr. Benjamin E. Mays.

The fundamental objective of MMUF is to increase the number of minority students, and others with a demonstrated commitment to eradicating racial disparities, who will pursue Ph.D.s in core fields in the arts and sciences. The program aims to reduce over time the serious underrepresentation on the faculties of individuals from certain minority groups, as well as to address the attendant educational consequences of these disparities.

The program serves the related goals of structuring campus environments so that they will be more conducive to improved racial and ethnic relations, and of providing role models for all youth.

MMUF aims to achieve its mission by identifying and supporting students of great promise and helping them to become scholars of the highest distinction.

History of the Mellon Program at Penn

Participating Institutions

Barnard College
Bowdoin College
Brooklyn College/CUNY
Brown University
Bryn Mawr College
Carleton College
California Institute of Technology
City College of New York/CUNY
Columbia University
Cornell University
Dartmouth College
Duke University
Emory University
Harvard University
Haverford College
Heritage College
Hunter College/CUNY
Macalester College
Oberlin College
Princeton University
Queens College/CUNY
Rice University
Smith College
Stanford University
Swarthmore College
United Negro College Fund, Inc. (Member Institutions)
University of Cape Town (South Africa)
University of Chicago
University of Pennsylvania
University of Southern California
Washington University
Wellesley College
Wesleyan University
Williams College
Yale University