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. . . advancing our commitment to diversity in academe

Through its Ford Foundation Fellowships Program, the Ford Foundation seeks to increase the diversity of the nation’s college and university faculties by increasing their ethnic and racial diversity, to maximize the educational benefits of diversity, and to increase the number of professors who can and will use diversity as a resource for enriching the education of all students.

Dear Ford Fellows:

I am writing to ask you to consider making a personal contribution to the Ford Fellows’ Fund, which was established in 1994 to help the Ford Foundation and the National Research Council make additional fellowship awards. Since then, fellows have contributed over $145,000 to the fund. However, even as I write to you, funding had been reduced at the time of the planning for the 2005 Conference of Ford Fellows. Nevertheless, this year 120 pre-doctoral, dissertation, and post-doctoral scholars were awarded Ford Foundation Fellowships of $21,000 to $45,000.

Since the Ford Foundation matches whatever the fellows donate, through the generosity of past contributors the Fund was able to help the Ford Foundation and NRC make an additional award this year. A few testimonials will hopefully help make the case for contributing to this Fund more tangible.


“The Diversity Dissertation Fellowship will enable me to complete my dissertation and receive my doctoral degree in clinical psychology. My dissertation research project is entitled Resiliency and Risk in Native American Communities: A culturally informed etiological investigation. This research project will entail direct tribal participatory research with tribal communities in Montana to investigate risk and protective factors specific to these cultural groups.”


Annjeanette Belcourt-Dittloff
The University of Montana


“I study Politics, in all its complexity and indeterminancy, and I find that an interdisciplinary perspective – blending anthropology, sociology, political theory, and political science – is best suited for my research objectives. The Ford Foundation Pre-Doctoral and, now, the ford Foundation Diversity Dissertation Fellowship, have been essential in facilitating my research, allowing me to do in depth, inter-disciplinary, research into the politics of nationalism in Québec and Catalunya.”


Jaime Gerardo Lluch
Yale University

As you can see, the Ford Foundation continues to provide awards to very deserving candidates. Therefore, I hope you will recognize the importance of supporting the Ford Fellows’ Fund – either as a first-time donor or as a continuing supporter.

I have already made a personal contribution to the Ford Fellows’ Fund and I hope you will join me. Any contribution – $500, $200, $100, $50 or less – will make a significant difference in our efforts to support Ford Foundation Diversity Fellows. Several institutions, organizations and companies will match individual funds either through in-kind donations or direct contributions, so I encourage you to pursue this if it is available as it is a way to further leverage donations.

Decisions that impact the academy are often made at levels beyond our scope. However, by personally contributing to the Ford Fellows’ Fund, you are directly helping to increase the diversity of the academy, and contributing to the success of a scholar.

Thank you for joining me in this important effort.

Jonathan Yorba, PhD
1991 Predoctoral Fellow
2003 Co-Chair, Conference of Ford Fellows
2005 Chair, Ford Fellows’ Fund

Please take a moment to contribute to the Fund. Make your check payable to The National Academies. Please be sure to add "Ford Fellows Fund" in the memo line of the check and mail it to:

Office of Development
The National Academies
Fifth Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001

On-line contributions are now possible through The National Academies homepage. Just follow this link and click on the banner provided in the left margin of the page entitled "Making a Gift Online" to launch the contribution form.

NOTE: please select "Ford Fellows Fund" from the list provided on the contribution form. This will ensure that your gift will be credited to the Ford Fellows Fund.

We gratefully acknowledge the contributions made by Fellows.

An article on the Ford Fellows Fund, “Past Recipients of Ford's Minority Fellowships Raise Money to Add to Their Numbers,” was printed in the Chronicle of Higher Education on December 17, 1999.