Annually, the SFA underwrites Nathalie Dupree Graduate Fellowships for students in the Southern Studies M.A. Program. The fellowship offers tuition assistance and a modest stipend in exchange for work with our organization. Students accepted to the University of Mississippi’s graduate program in Southern Studies may request the opportunity to work with SFA, though awards and assignments are ultimately determined by the Department of Southern Studies.

SFA Graduate Fellows

For the 2016–2017 academic year, SFA is pleased to work with Rachel Childs, Tori De Leone, and Chelsea Loper.


RChilds headshotRachel Childs was convinced to pursue a M.A in Southern Studies after volunteering at SFA’s 2015 fall symposium. She holds a B.A. in English-Writing from Berry College, and most recently spent four years in Boston as a developmental editor for first-year composition/business writing textbooks and professional resources at Macmillan Learning.  A metro-Atlanta native, she returns for her second year as a Nathalie Dupree Graduate Fellow.


Victoria De Leone grew up in mountainous Central Oregon. Trading the small community in the woods for a slightly larger one on an island, she studied food cultures and immigration narratives at NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study. After completing her undergraduate studies, she served as a community manager for a grocery delivery startup in Brooklyn.

While she much enjoyed her time in the craft food industry, Victoria is excited to being her second year studying the diverse food stories of the South.


Chelsea Loper holds an MA in Southern Studies from the University of Mississippi and a BA in Political Science from Presbyterian College.She is currently pursuing an MFA in Documentary Expression from the University of Mississippi. She is excited to be back in Oxford to explore new projects, meet new people, and document and photograph their experiences.