Hosting & Mentoring a University Administrative Fellow

Overview of the UAF Program

Program Description

Created in 2014, the University Administrative Fellows (UAF) program provides enrolled graduate students (typically post-generals Ph.D. students) the opportunity to work in an administrative capacity for approximately six hours per week during the course of a semester.

UAF hosts craft their position descriptions in consultation with Assistant Dean James M. Van Wyck. The GradFUTURES team then circulates the posting to graduate students in the GradFUTURES Professional Development Newsletter, and on the GradFUTURES website. In most cases, graduate students apply directly to the host department and the host department selects the fellow.

The fellowship consists of working on a project under the direction of the host department, attending meetings when appropriate, and discussing with the host the various aspects of the host’s position, including specific responsibilities, organizational dynamics, external networks, etc.

Fellows receive a stipend (which is covered by the host office, in most cases) in addition to their normal support. Before accepting the fellowship, selected students must receive permission from their dissertation adviser(s) and must be in good academic standing


Graduate students

  • gain a deeper understanding and appreciation for university administration
  • are mentored by a non-faculty member on campus
  • learn new skills or use existing skills to complete a project in a department outside their academic department
  • are introduced to a potential career field

Administrative mentors

  • work with graduate students on a discreet deliverable or an on-going project
  • gain a deeper appreciation of the many abilities Princeton graduate students have, and better utilize these talents in the context of their own offices


At the end of each UAF appointment, the fellows and mentors are surveyed regarding their experience and provide suggestions for further program development. The fellows and mentors also submit a short one-page document describing the outcomes for each UAF mentor/mentee pairing.


Adjustments are made to the program based on survey feedback. For instance, based on survey feedback after the first years of the program, we have added a professional development seminar series as a requirement of the program. Fellows are required to attend four out of six seminars. Seminar topics range from “Managing Up: How to Connect with your Mentor” to “Legal and Ethical Topics in Higher Education” to “Understanding the University as a Complex Organization."


On-boarding University Administrative Fellows

If you have interviewed a UAF candidate and would like to make a formal offer, use the form below to submit all the necessary information.

On-boarding University Administrative Fellows

Hear from Current and Former UAFs

Avery Agles, GS, CBE
University Administrative Fellow

"My experience has totally transformed my idea of academia into a place where meaningful change and empowerment can happen."

Kimberly Akano, GS, REL
University Administrative Fellow

Kimberly Akano is a Ph.D. student in Religion and a University Administrative Fellow with GradFutures. Using ethnographic and historical methods, Kimberly examines how the increasing presence of African immigrants in the United States transforms contemporary conceptualizations of Black religious identities. In particular, Kimberly considers how…

Mai Alkhamissi, GS, ANT
University Administrative Fellow

Mai K. Alkhamissi is a second-year PhD student with an MA in Anthropology and Cultural Politics from Goldsmiths and a BA in Anthropology and Sociology from the American University in Cairo. Mai is a University Administrative Fellow in the McGraw Center for Teaching and Learning. Mai has done fieldwork in Cairo from 2011 to 2013 on a project…

Genevieve Allotey-Pappoe, GS, MUS
University Administrative Fellow
"The GradFutures program is a great initiative for the professional development of graduate students at Princeton."
Ellen Ambrosone
South Asian Studies Librarian

Ellen Ambrosone joined Princeton University Library as the South Asian Studies Librarian in 2019. She has a Ph.D. in South Asian Languages and Civilizations from the University of Chicago, where she completed her dissertation, "Making Modern Malayalam: Literary and Educational Practices in Nineteenth-Century Kerala." Ellen has…

Anna Arabindan-Kesson
Assistant Professor and Director, Art Hx

Professor Anna Arabindan-Kesson is an assistant professor of African American and Black Diasporic art with a joint appointment in the Department of Art and Archaeology. Born in Sri Lanka, she completed undergraduate degrees in New Zealand and Australia, and worked as a Registered Nurse in the UK before completing her PhD in African American…

Vandana Bajaj
Assistant Director, Princeton Center for Language Study (PCLS)

Vandana Bajaj is currently the Assistant Director at the Princeton Center for Language Study, where she leads all strategic initiatives related to less-commonly-taught language teaching and learning, including external proficiency testing for the undergraduate language requirement and cross-institutional collaborations for live synchronous…

Mary Bechler
Senior Associate Dean for Finance and Administration

Mary Bechler is a Senior Associate Dean in the Office of the Dean of the Graduate School. Her responsibilities there include supervision of admission and financial administration staff; Fellowship programs and graduate student financial awards; Enrollment management, which includes admission targets and offers; Oversight of fellowship…

Natalie Berkman, *18 (FIT)
University Administrative Fellow

"Organizing the first Grad Student Career Meetup helped me to start picturing myself doing other things, and now I am happily managing academics at a creative media school in Paris."

Elisabeth Bloom, GS, FIT

I am a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of French & Italian. Before coming to Princeton, I received a Bachelor of Music degree from Vanderbilt University's Blair School of Music, with a double major in French language and literature. I have been performing as a cellist and a singer since the age of eight, and I have played at Carnegie Hall…

Marshall Brown
Director, Princeton Urban Imagination Center

Marshall Brown is an architect, urbanist, and scholar. Among other accomplishments, he has represented the United States at the prestigious Venice Architecture Biennale. His work is in the collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and Crystal Bridges Museum. Brown is a MacDowell Fellow, and a Graham…

Ruth Chang

Ruth Chang is a co-founder of Midstory, a nonprofit thinkhub based in Toledo with a mission to progress the Midwest narrative by incubating bright, diverse and interdisciplinary thinkers to exchange ideas and envision the future of our region through multimedia storytelling and solutions-oriented research. She currently oversees the…

Submit a Call for University Administrative Fellows


Until further notice, this Fellowship program (and all related activities) will be conducted remotely. For more information about COVID-19 policies, please consult the Princeton Spring2021 website.