CMSI Research Fellowship

The Penn Center for Minority Serving Institutions (CMSI) is committed to supporting the scholarship of academics focusing their work on Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs). In an effort to support this scholarship, we've offered one CMSI Research Fellowship each year to any scholar pursuing research focused on MSIs. The selected fellow received $5,000.00 over the duration of the fellowship period and was expected to write either a report or research brief that includes original research on the proposed topic. The final CMSI Research Fellow was selected in September 2017. 

Click on the links below to read the research briefs and reports by the some of the past CMSI Research Fellows: 

Using Open Educational Resources to Lower Student Cost of Attendance at Minority Serving Institutions by 2016-2017 CMSI Research Fellow, Ervin James III

Reframing Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs): A Counterstory of a “Latinized” Institution in the Midwest by 2015-2016 CMSI Research Fellow, Gina A. Garcia

Digital Stories in Asian American Studies and Co-Producer Knowledge in AANAPISI Contexts by 2014-2015 CMSI Research Fellow, Shirley S. Tang 

Fostering Empowerment: Supporting Student Success at Native American Serving, Non-Tribal Institutions by 2013-2014 CMSI Research Fellow, Angela Rochat

2017-2018 CMSI Research Fellow 


Bach Mai Dolly is an Assistant Professor of Education at the Graduate School of Education and Counseling at Lewis & Clark College. Her research examines inequality in educational opportunity, with attention to racial stratification, racial heterogeneity, and organizational change. In combination, these areas of research have manifested in studies on ethnic stratification, MSIs, and overlooked student populations. She received her M.A. in Education from the University of California, Los Angeles and her B.A. from University of Washington, Seattle. 

Bach Mai Dolly will use the CMSI Research Fellowship to explore the early adoption processes of two newly-funded Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institutions (AANAPISIs). She is also interested in the study of racial stratification and heterogeneity across the K-20 pipeline, particularly how institutions are mitigating inequalities that follow students throughout the entirety of their educational experiences. 

Scholars that Have Previously Received Fellowships


As a full-time faculty member, Ervin teaches both humanities and social science courses at Paul Quinn College. He received his bachelor’s degree in political science from Tuskegee University and his master’s and doctorate degrees in history from Texas Southern University and Texas A&M University, respectively. Currently, he is studying the usage of open source course material at MSIs. He is also committed to developing innovative andragogical teaching techniques and retention strategies for first-generation college students enrolled in urban institutions that serve under-resourced communities.

Gina a. Garcia

Gina an assistant professor in the Department of Administrative and Policy Studies. She received her Ph.D in Higher Education and Organizational Change from the University of California, Los Angeles. Her research interests center on issues of equity and diversity within higher education with an emphasis on the organizational culture and identity of Hispanic Serving Institutions and the retention, success, and identity development of Latinx college students. While at UCLA, Gina was a research analyst at the Higher Education Research Institute, where she examined the curricular and co-curricular experiences that foster success for students of color pursuing STEM degrees. *Note: Gina received a CMSI Research Support Grant, which has been folded into the CMSI Research Fellowship.

Shirley S. Tang

Shirley is an Associate Professor of Asian American Studies in the School for Global Inclusion and Social Development and a core teaching faculty in the Transnational, Cultural, and Community Studies M.S./Ph.D. Program at the University of Massachusetts–Boston. Her research project, “Digital Storytelling in Asian American Studies at an AANAPISI Research University,” will explore a generation of Asian American students who have turned to media technologies and created an archive of audiovisual products that reveal to the campus and the community new dimensions of Asian American student experiences.

Angela Rochat

Angie is the Director of the Office of Sponsored Research and Federal Relations, Fort Lewis College, Colorado. Her research project, "Raising Awareness of Native American-Serving, Non-Tribal Institutions in Higher Education Public Policy," is a call to include such institutions in the national narrative on MSIs and to develop greater advocacy for the Native American students who attend these institutions.