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Capella University Fellows Program

Giving back, changing lives in the community.

Capella University seeks to provide the most direct path between learning and employment. But we don’t want to stop there: we believe in giving back by changing lives where we work and live.

The Capella University Fellows Program is our investment in helping to build the talent and leadership skills required to mitigate social and economic inequities in the Twin Cities and Greater Minnesota. Employees from select Fellow corporate partners and community organizations are chosen to participate in the program annually.

Capella University Fellows will receive:

  • A full-tuition scholarship for a Capella master’s program.
  • A leadership assessment and personalized expert coaching.
  • An invitation to networking events with Capella leadership, community leaders, and other Capella University Fellows Program members.
  • Special recognition and invitations to exclusive Capella University events.

Fellows program scholarship

The application period for the 2020 Capella University Fellows Program Scholarship is now closed. The 2021 Fellows scholarship application will be announced in late summer 2020.

2020 Fellows recipients

Shandella Darring, MS in Emergency Management Program

Senior Experiential Learning Manager at Cookie Cart, Minneapolis, MN

Shandella’s goal is to address employment differences that largely affect people of color. She currently works to transform the lives of youth in the Twin Cities to prepare them for success in the workforce by providing quality youth employment experiences and developing a transition program through strategic community partnerships.

Stacy Heltemes, MS in Human Resource Management Program

Human Resources Manager at Pillsbury United Communities, Minneapolis, MN

Stacy believes in helping people reach their full potential. She aims to provide professional human resources support to employees while proactively working to identify and secure increased opportunities for clientele and the community in general.

Heather Kamia, Master of Social Work Program

Program Director, Metro Youth and Family Services at Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN

Heather has seen firsthand how accounting for families’ realities can have a significant impact on both practitioner and client success. She will work on developing advocacy and partnership-building tools needed to connect decision-makers with families within social service systems.

Shanika Lambert, Master of Social Work Program

Lead Youth Counselor, Girl's RAP Program, YWCA, Minneapolis, MN

By earning a master’s degree, Shanika plans to continue to work to build rapport, bonds, and relationships with the youth she serves, and to help train other individuals - especially with youth of color – in this effort. The goal is to reduce disconnects and non-trusting relationships with people in positions of power.

Maria Mills, Master of Social Work Program

Therapeutic Foster Care Coordinator at Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN

Maria’s project addresses the disparity in educational attainment between young adults who age out of foster care and their peers in the general population. She aims to raise the graduation rate of youth who age out of foster care by educating social workers and foster families, along with designing and implementing a transitional program for the youth.

Mai Yang, Master of Social Work Program

Career Counselor at Avivo, Minneapolis, MN

Mai hopes to break down mental health stigmas and employment instability barriers. She wants to improve the well-being in marginalized communities by educating employers and raising mental health awareness.

Anisha Murphy, MBA Program

Director of Community Engagement at Northside Economic Development Network (NEON), Minneapolis, MN

Anisha’s research project seeks to address the gaps that exist in the African-American and African-born communities in Minnesota.

2019 Capella Fellows
Ayan Abdinur (MBA)
Maria Ayala Ramirez (MBA)
Kendall Benson (Master of Social Work)
Jennifer Christianson (MS in Education)
Rebecca Lopez (MS in Human Services)
Ben Phillip (MS in Higher Education)
Nou Vang (Master of Social Work)

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