Swensen Scholarship (Est. 2020)

The Swensen Scholarship, given in honor of David Swensen PH.D. ’80, is awarded to Yale undergraduates who excel both in the classroom and in athletics or the arts. Recipients, known as the Swensen Scholars, are awarded funding to practice the highest caliber training in their selected field. Swensen Scholars will become a cohort of achievers recognized as the epitome of Yale and the importance of curricular and extra-curricular excellence as integral parts of a liberal arts education.


Alexander Laurent Rubalcava, Timothy Dwight College

His dedicated interest and hard work show a deep commitment and fearless attitude in making pictures that deal with issues close to him: personal themes related to the culture of the American family and Mormon identity. His photographic endeavor is comparable to that of an MFA student – which is rare to see from an undergraduate – Eli Whitney or not. His work has the potential to be important in that it is not merely a mode of self-expression, but also as a tool to help the broader world understand this very specific and opaque culture he was raised in, thus bringing people of differing beliefs that much closer to one another through a new understanding.

Lisa KeresziAssistant Director of Graduate Studies in Photography, Yale School of Art

Natalie Brown, Timothy Dwight College

Natalie possesses a once-in-a generation combination of talent, determination, and discipline. Her creative work in multiple fields shines with originality, maturity, and confidence. Through composing, playwriting, and academic research, she seeks to (in her own words) “amplify voices historically excluded from western narratives and use the arts as a means for social change.” Ms. Brown is a standout Yale student and artist, and every bit as much a standout candidate for a Swensen Scholarship in the arts. Natalie’s proposed project will advance her understanding of the art form, increase her facility with the coordination of compositional finesse in theatrical production, and will propel her into a field vastly underrepresented by women of color.

Dan Egan, Senior Lecturer: Music; Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies; Coordinator: Shen Curriculum for Musical Theater


Chiara Hardy, Grace Hopper College

Olivia Marwell, Jonathan Edwards College

Jeffrey Steele, Ezra Stiles College

Michael Wang, Silliman College


Doruk Eliaçık, Morse College

Diego Miró, Trumbull College


Merritt Barnwell, Saybrook College


Vanessa Copeland, Pauli Murray College