Maisam AlomarDr. Maisam Alomar, assistant professor of women and gender studies, has been named a 2021 Career Enhancement Fellow by the Institute for Citizens & Scholars. This fellowship, funded by by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, seeks to increase the presence of underrepresented junior and other faculty members in the humanities, social sciences, and arts by creating career development opportunities for selected Fellows who are committed to eradicating racial disparities.

As a Fellow, Alomar will receive a six-month sabbatical stipend, which releases faculty from teaching so they could focus on research during the fellowship period. It also provides a research stipend, and offers faculty professional development and networking opportunities. Alomar will join all of this year's Fellows to participate in a professional development retreat later this Summer. She will also work with a faculty mentor during her fellowship, and has chosen Therí Pickens from Bates College, who also previously won the same fellowship.

Alomar joins a class of 38 other Fellows, who each represent unique perspectives within their disciplines and are committed to increasing diversity and inclusion on campus through both service and research. Awarded since 2001, the Career Enhancement Fellowship has supported more than 400 junior faculty members, creating a robust network of scholars committed to eradicating racial disparities in core fields in the arts and humanities.

Alomar's research lies mainly in the areas of disability studies, cultural studies, ethnic studies, and also incorporates black studies and critical race scholarship to analyze ways racial categories shape what is considered a disability, who is considered disabled, and the legal and social consequences of such categorization. Her most recent article, "This Isn’t the South Bronx”: Race, Criminality, and Disability in the Contemporary Opioid Epidemic" was included in the September 2020 issue of the journal SocialText published by Duke University.