Program Overview

The Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship (MMUF) works to increase diversity in higher education by providing promising undergraduates from underrepresented backgrounds two years of mentoring and preparation for a PhD program. It supports students committed to pursuing doctoral studies and a teaching career in higher education.

Each spring, five Bowdoin sophomores are selected as Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellows. Starting in the summer after their sophomore year, students are involved in faculty-mentored research and participate in other activities as part of a community of scholars.

Specific elements of the program at Bowdoin include:

  • Faculty mentor who will serve as a role model and research advisor to help fellows discover an intellectual identity as they prepare for their Ph.D. programs and academic careers. 
  • Research while participating in the Summer Research Training Program during the first summer as a rising junior; research support for two academic years; guided research or enrollment in an off-campus research program the second summer as a rising senior.
  • Stipends so that research and fellowship activities can replace summer and campus jobs. For two summers ($3,900 per summer) and four semesters ($1,800 per semester) of research.
  • Funding for GRE preparation and modest travel assistance.
  • Undergraduate loan repayment for fellows who enroll in an eligible Ph.D. program within three years of graduating from Bowdoin.
  • Ongoing support and programming for fellows throughout undergraduate, graduate school and beyond. Fellows are expected to work closely with the MMUF Director and to participate enthusiastically in all aspects of the program.