May 02, 2024

2024 FAO Schwartz Fellowship recipient Alex Gabriel Alex Gabriel ’24Alex Gabriel ’24, an art history major from Bayville, New Jersey, was awarded an FAO Schwarz Fellowship in social impact.

The FAO Schwarz Family Foundation supports a new cohort of outstanding recent college graduates with paid, two-year fellowship positions each year. Fellows work at leading nonprofit organizations in three cities: Boston, New York and Philadelphia. Gabriel will be a fellow at the Museum of the City of New York.

While there, he will give museum tours to student groups and adjust the content and approach depending on the needs of the visitors, work to improve access programming using feedback from visitors, as well as collaborate with staff members from different departments to ensure that accessibility is a priority throughout the institution.

“Since interning at the Jewish Museum in New York City in 2023, I have grown increasingly passionate about museum accessibility,” Gabriel said. “It was inspiring to see a large institution like MCNY that not only recognized the importance of improving accessibility but also provided an opportunity for access programming to be strengthened.”

Gabriel joins a highly selective cohort of fellows from colleges and universities across the country, including Harvard, Oberlin College, Temple University, University of Louisville, Washington University in St. Louis and Wellesley College.

“I am pleased to see Alex’s passion for social impact find a home in the prestigious and highly competitive FAO Schwarz Fellowship,” said Karol Weaver, professor of history and coordinator for fellowship advising. “His selection was the result of dedicated and thoughtful preparation. This experience will lay the foundation for a successful career in the museum and social impact sector.”

The fellowship program seeks recent college graduates interested in developing their potential as leaders in the world of equity and social impact. At their host organizations, fellows gain skills, expertise and knowledge. The fellowship also includes professional development experiences such as retreats, mentoring and networking.

“I know that graduate school is in my future, but I think that having time to work in the museum field will enrich not only my applications but also me as an individual,” Gabriel said. “After completing this fellowship, I plan to pursue a graduate degree in art history and continue working in museums, specifically within museum accessibility.”

Alumni of the fellowship program go on to hold leadership roles at nonprofit or public service organizations and programs, attend prestigious graduate programs and start their own organizations. This selective, domestic fellowship is one of a few programs of its kind focused on social impact leadership.

“We are delighted to see the passion for social impact from our impressive group of applicants,” said Priscilla Cohen, executive director of the FAO Schwarz Fellowship. “This year’s candidates are so thoughtful about their pursuits for social change, which came through in every application. As incoming fellows join their host organizations this summer, they will begin their careers in roles designed to put their ideas to work, improve current and gain new skills, and deepen their knowledge of the social impact sector. I look forward to seeing them grow as leaders throughout the two-year fellowship.”