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The Southern Foodways Alliance is an institute of the Center for the Study of Southern Culture at the University of Mississippi.


The SFA underwrites two Nathalie Dupree Graduate Fellowships each academic year. These fellowships are available to qualified students in the Southern Studies MA program at the University of Mississippi.

Catherine Jessee

A Virginia native, Catherine Jessee comes to Mississippi by way of New York City and the San Francisco Bay Area where she has worked on multiple editorial and communications teams. With a focus on Appalachian history and place, she is eager to dig deeper where food systems intersect with or diverge from social movement, justice, and activism. She holds a BA in American Studies and English from the University of Virginia.

Jai Williams

Jai is a photographer currently based in the South. Bringing her clients’ vision to life through thoughtful and stimulating media, Jai specializes in culinary, travel, and cultural photography with a future interest in documentary projects. Publications such as Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown, the Washington Post, and Forbes have featured her culinary work, while her travel photography has been used by both international and domestic tourism boards for digital and print campaigns. Jai was recently named as a Nathalie Dupree Fellow for the Southern Foodways Alliance and looks forward to researching Black as well as ethnic foodways throughout the South and to documenting the Delta’s folklore through visual media.

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