More Than $1M to Support Transformative Food Systems Fellowship at University of Michigan

A new fellowship from an interdisciplinary group of schools, colleges, and programs at the University of Michigan will assist an incoming group of master’s degree students who plan to study food systems. Students who are part of the Transformative Food Systems (TFS) Fellowship will study methods for constructing transformative food systems that are equitable, health promoting, and ecologically resilient.

Open to applicants who identify as underrepresented, first generation, or low income, TFS fellows can enroll in Taubman College’s Master of Urban and Regional Planning program, the School of Public Health’s Department of Nutritional Sciences, or the School for Environment and Sustainability. 

“Now more than ever, we are seeing the impact that environmental, health, and economic crises are having on the world’s food systems,” said Lesli Hoey, an associate professor of urban and regional planning whose research seeks to improve healthy food access and local food economies in Michigan, Bolivia, Kenya, and Vietnam. She serves as one of the TFS Fellowship directors.

The fellowship, which is set to begin with two cohorts of master’s students who enroll in the Fall 2022 and Fall 2023 terms, is funded by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture’s National Needs Graduate and Postgraduate Fellowship. 

Supported by a stipend, summer travel award, and tuition scholarships, TFS fellows will participate in food systems-specific classes and complete a field experience project in addition to their master’s program requirements.  

“Students who are selected as TFS fellows will be equipped with the knowledge to build resilient and equitable food systems,” said Andy Jones, associate professor of nutritional sciences at Michigan Public Health and one of several co-directors of the program. “We want to prepare the next generation of more diverse food systems leaders and researchers.”

Applications for admission to the fellowship are currently being accepted for the first class of fellows in 2022. Separate applications are required for each cohort. 

Learn more about eligibility and requirements for the Transformative Food Systems Fellowship.