School of Music Diversity Fellows Program

The School of Music (SoM) Diversity Fellows Program seeks underrepresented (URM) or minority students to provide leadership and develop opportunities for the school, with a focus on diversity. Fellows work with faculty and staff in the DEIB Committee at the school level to identify and support academic and professional development needs and provide resources, mentorship opportunities, and specialized programming for students across the school. Additional efforts will be made to sustain leadership funding awards and build a strong and supportive student community. For questions about the Diversity Fellows Program, please contact Anna Paradis or Asher Suski

2023-2024 Music Diversity Fellows & Advisors

2022-2023 Music Diversity Fellows & Advisors

The application for 2023-2024 Fellows is closed. The 2024-2025 application will open in May 2024.

Eligibility Requirements

This Fellowship opportunity is available to all students admitted and enrolled in the School of Music who identify as an underrepresented (URM) or minority students (see definitions below). Fellows should have strong leadership and communication skills and possess a desire to support fellow students and the school in promoting diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB). Students must make good academic progress and have approval from their advisor to participate in this fellowship opportunity.

Definitions of Minority*

  1. Racial & Ethnic Minority Groups: Black or African American, Hispanic or LatinX, Asian American, Indigenous (American Indian, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander), and those who are more than one race. 
  2. First-generation college student
  3. Met or overcame challenging experiences on the path to higher education, including but are not limited to:
    • Individuals with a disability
    • Being of a gender or orientation identity historically underrepresented (LGBTQI+)
    • Veteran status
    • Single parent or primary caregiver
    • Socioeconomic status
    • Holding DACA status

*Additional information about understanding social identities can be found on the DEIB Concepts & Definitions webpage

Expectations & Responsibilities

Fellows will be expected to serve one-year terms and may reapply for the fellowship each year. A $1,000 fellowship award will be provided for the first year in the program, split between the fall and spring semesters. Current Fellows must reapply to serve an additional year of service as a SoM Diversity Fellow.

Fellows can expect to work 2-5 hours each month including occasional evening and weekend events. Other responsibilities include: 

  • Attend monthly lunch meetings throughout the academic year (while classes are in session). Fall (Sept-Nov) and Spring (February-April)
  • Facilitate and plan a minimum of one performance or professional development event each year focused on diversity (partnering with other student organizations, campus student services, or other departments or university offices). 
  • Attend on-campus recruitment events if available (e.g. SoM Audition Days, event networking, panels, tours or one-on-one meetings with prospective students) as a representative of KU and the School of Music (school apparel provided).  
  • Provide mentorship to new undergraduate & graduate students and student groups to promote DEIB efforts in music as an opportunity. 
  • Build community within the school by connecting with other students through student surveys, town hall or discussion events, promoting and attending DEIB training, and tabling or being available for office hours each month (estimate 1 hr a month).   

We encourage SoM Diversity Fellows to seek out and promote diversity-related news, research articles, and events through social media within the school. 


Prospective Fellows are required to complete a short application which includes, profile information, short essay questions, a statement of purpose, and advisor’s letter of recommendation. Applications open and are posted on the DEIB webpage. Based on the completed application, students will be selected for a personal online interview and we hope to have the selection process complete by the end of August, with meetings starting in September.