Press Releases

March 28, 2018

Announcing the 2018 Jeannette K. Watson Fellows


Three year program provides unprecedented experiences to outstanding students

NEW YORK, NEW YORK (March 28, 2018) -- Today the Watson Foundation announced the selection of its 19th Class of Jeannette K. Watson Fellows. The fellowship program provides outstanding undergraduates from 12 New York City colleges with three years of personal, professional and cultural immersions in the United States and abroad.

At the center of the program are funded summer internships at leading organizations in New York City and around the world. Combined with close mentoring, Watson Fellows expand their vision, develop their potential and build the confidence and perspective to do so for others. Fellows go on to attend leading graduate programs, receive national and international scholarships, and become leaders in their fields.

“In this milestone year, our 50th Anniversary as a foundation, we are excited that our campus and global partnerships are stronger than ever”, said Chris Kasabach, Executive Director of the Watson Foundation. "The new class of Jeannette K. Watson Fellows represents the diversity, creativity, openness, and ambition of New York City’s most remarkable students. We look forward to welcoming them to the Watson Community and crafting a three-year experience that develops their unique aspirations."

About the Jeannette K. Watson Fellowship

Jeannette K. Watson Fellows are chosen through a nomination process from freshman and sophomore students at 12 New York City partner institutions. The fellowship's comprehensive programming includes three summers of internships at leading organizations around the world, a cohort of supportive peers and ongoing mentorship. Over 250 Jeannette K. Watson Fellows have been named since the fellowship’s start in 1999.

Watson Fellows are represented in America’s top graduate programs and go on to become leaders in their fields including law, medicine, public policy, business and the arts. They are the recipients of numerous Fulbright, Truman, Coro, Urban Fellow and  many other national and city awards.

About the Watson Foundation

In 1961, the Watson Foundation was created as a charitable trust in the name of Thomas J. Watson Sr, best known for building IBM. Through one-of-a-kind programs, and over 100 global partnerships, the Foundation provides students with personal, professional and cultural opportunities to expand their vision, develop their potential, and build their confidence and perspective do so for others.


2018 Jeannette K. Watson Fellows (Class of 2020)

Fatu Amara, College of Staten Island

Evelyn Austin, St. John’s University

Nina Daro, Brooklyn College

Jessica Duque, Pace University

Izzy Gouse, Hunter College

Shakila Khan, Hunter College

Musarrat Lamia, John Jay College of Criminal Justice

Melissa Lent, Hunter College

Mohamed Magassa, Lehman College

Karishma Malhotra, Baruch College

Salma Mohamed, Brooklyn College

Jacob Sellman, Hunter College

Amelia Smyth, The City College of New York

Renuka Surujnarain, Queens College

Teagan Sweet, St. John’s University


Participating Institutions

Baruch College

Brooklyn College

College of Staten Island

Hunter College

John Jay College of Criminal Justice

Lehman College

LIU Brooklyn

Marymount Manhattan College

Pace University (Manhattan)

Queens College

St. John’s University

The City College of New York

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