The Graduate School FUSE Program (Facilitating Underrepresented Student Experiences) fosters partnerships with minority-serving institutions to enhance their transition and support for undergraduate students as they learn about applying to graduate school and enroll as a graduate student.

Participants in the FUSE program benefit from an application fee waiver for the University of Georgia Graduate School and, if admitted to UGA, consideration for a graduate school assistantship, which includes reduced tuition, a monthly stipend, and a strong FUSE cohort support system with other students from Minority-Serving Institutions.


Congratulations to the 2023 FUSE Cohort

August Alderman
Counseling Psychology, Mary Frances Early College of Education

August AldermanAugust Alderman was born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland. She received her bachelor’s degree in psychology at Morgan State University. August completed her master’s degree in Community Psychology at Florida A&M University. She is a first-year doctoral student studying counseling psychology in the Mary Frances Early College of Education. August is an active board member of the National Association of Black Psychology (ABPsi) student circle. Her research interests include health and wellness, education, racial and ethnic development, community violence, and community healing. She hopes to one day be able to help facilitate healing in the Black community by incorporating various mental health techniques.

Lauren Bailey
Professional School Counseling, Mary Frances Early College of Education

Lauren BaileyLauren Bailey was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia. She is a proud alumna of the illustrious Spelman College where she obtained her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, concentrating in Mental Health and graduating with Latin honors. During her time at Spelman, she was a WEL scholar, G-STEM fellow, and a member of the Psi Chi Honor Society. She is currently pursuing a Master of Education and Education Specialist in Professional (School) Counseling at the UGA Mary Frances Early College of Education.

Lauren’s aspiration and goal as a Professional School Counselor is to help students, particularly of color, with the complexities of school, playing a pivotal role in the social-emotional, character, academic, and vocational development of the lives of students she serves. As a product of Atlanta Public Schools, she feels it is her duty to return to her community because she understand that schools with high concentrations of low-income and minority students receive fewer instructional resources than others and that there are large disparities in post-secondary education attainment by race, socio-economic status, gender, and history of family completion by college.

In addition to being passionate about her education, Lauren loves to travel, spend time with family/friends, cook, shop, and watch her favorite shows/movies. In addition, she loves doing community service through her sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. and being a Girl Scout Leader at her church.

Moesha Ciceron
Counseling Psychology, Mary Frances Early College of Education

Moesha CiceronMoesha Ciceron completed her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in 2019. To showcase her commitment to understanding and addressing community-based issues, she earned a master’s degree in Community Psychology from Florida A&M University in 2022. She is beginning a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology at the University of Georgia.

Moesha’s research interest contributes to scholarship regarding the experiences of Black women in professional settings. Her research has explored topics of Black Hair/Grooming Practices in the Workplace, Black Identity Expression in Professional Occupations, Black Women’s Standard of Beauty, and Social Determinants of Health for Black Women Veterans, all of which reveal her dedication to understanding and improving the lives of Black Women in America. 

Moesha’s projected career goals are to make a lasting impact on both academia and mental health care for communities of color. She hopes to become a professor at a public university and establish a private practice specializing in the culturally competent treatment of the Black Diaspora. 

Moesha is a first-generation Haitian-American who profoundly values her Caribbean culture. Speaking to her strong sense of community, her favorite hobby is spending time with her family. She also enjoys traveling, venturing outdoors, and savoring good food. 

Overall, Moesha’s achievements, research interests, and aspirations paint a picture of a dedicated and well-rounded individual making significant strides in her academic and professional journey while remaining connected to her roots and enjoying life’s pleasures. She is enthusiastic about embarking on this journey as a FUSE Scholar and exploring the program’s exceptional opportunities.

Nia Ervin
Film, Television and Digital Media, Grady College of Journalism & Mass Communication

Nia ErvinNia Ervin was born in Atlanta, GA, but was raised from early childhood in Athens and considers herself a native Athenian. A graduate of Clarke Central High School, Nia went on to attend Spelman College, where she became the founding Director of the Spelman-Morehouse Mock Trial Program, an inductee of Phi Beta Kappa honor society, and a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Eta Kappa Chapter, graduating summa cum laude with the Class of 2006. After attending law school at Georgetown University, Nia returned to Atlanta with renewed focus on the arts, her first and truest passion, and made the career leap into the then-burgeoning Atlanta film and television industry. 

Over the course of her tenure in Atlanta, Nia worked as a Production Coordinator, Story Producer, and Assistant Director on various independent film and television productions, with talent such as Kim Fields, Meagan Good, Sean Astin, and Raven-Symone. When she wasn’t filming on set, Nia was developing, writing and co-producing original material with her writing and producing partners, who often included The Horne Brothers, with whom she co-wrote the Covid-era short film INVASION (2020). As the film industry began to recover from the pandemic shutdown, Nia was back in Athens similarly recovering—from multiple surgeries after completely tearing her ACL. During that downtime, however, she learned of UGA’s new M.F.A. in Film, Television and Digital Media, and resolved to go back into academia to get the technical skills and formal training she missed on her path toward a career in law. An aspiring Writer/Director/Producer, Nia will graduate from UGA’s intensive new MFA Film program as a member of its 2023-2025 Cohort.

Darren Henry
Educational Psychology, Mary Frances Early College of Education

Darren HenryDarren Henry is an incoming first-year graduate student in the M.A. in Applied Cognition and Development Program at the Mary Frances College of Education. Darren is a proud alumnus of Morehouse College, where he earned a Bachelors of Arts in psychology, graduating with magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa honors. He was inducted as a member of the Psi Chi International Honors Society for his outstanding academic achievement within his major. His areas of research interest include, but are not limited to, culturally responsive pedagogy, socio-emotional learning, social cognition, and academic achievement among diversified SES populations. Upon graduating from this program, Darren has aspirations to pursue his Ph.D. in Educational Psychology and hopes to pursue professorship and research work within this field. 

Brittani Holmes
Journalism and Mass Communication, Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication

Brittani HolmesBrittani Holmes is a graduate student in the UGA’s Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree at Spelman College, where her academic fortitude earned her Magna Cum Laude graduation honors. During her college matriculation, Brittani held memberships in elite organizations, such as the Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society, Spelman College’s Ambassador Program, Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity, Young Democrats of America, and the Peer Assistant Leader Program. After obtaining her Master’s degree in Mass Communication and Journalism, she will pursue law school to earn a Juris Doctorate. Her career ambition is to  become a political journalist and advocate for marginalized communities. Brittani is also a zealous community leader. She recently started Created in Her Image®, a mentoring organization, where she enjoys giving back to disenfranchised women and girls in her hometown of Atlanta, Georgia. Brittani is a proud, active member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated. In her downtime, she enjoys traveling, working out, and spending time with her family.

Woody Lofton
Journalism and Mass Communication, Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication

Bio info not available

Isaac McKinney
Communication Studies, Franklin College of Arts and Sciences

Bio info not available


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