Over the course of the past few years, the focus of the Edelstein Family Foundation that supported the American Mosaic Project has been oriented toward the direct support of graduate students from diverse, under-represented backgrounds who work in the core areas of race, religion, anti-Semitism, and diversity. This is what we call our "Edelstein Fellows" program. In the past five years alone the Foundation has provided substantial educational support and research experience to 11 different graduate students in our department, and this isn't even to mention the additional dozen or so who benefited from working on the American Mosaic Project research team before that.
Many of these Edelstein Fellows and American Mosaic alums are now working at top institutions including Marquette University, Augustana College, and the University of Pittsburgh. Just this past year, for example, our former American Mosaic project manager, Eric Tranby, secured a tenure track position at the University of Vermont, and Edelstein alum Melissa Weiner celebrated the release of her book Power, Protest, and the Public Schools: Jewish and African American Struggles in New York City (Rutgers University Press, 2010). On the strength of that volume, in fact, Weiner was recruited into a new, higher profile position in the Sociology Department at Holy Cross.
Building from these successes, our goal for the coming year is to work with several former Edelstein students to submit a major National Science Foundation grant that will fund a second wave of American Mosaic Project survey. This second generation project will not only allow us to update and develop findings from the original study, but the new wave of data will position us to recruit the next generation of graduate students into our program and include these students in shaping scholarship on racial and religious diversity and multiculturalism for a new generation.