Elmhurst University alumna Afaaf Amatullah ’21 recently received a prestigious Phi Kappa Phi Fellowship award, which she is using to help pay for law school.
“It was a great honor to be selected by Phi Kappa Phi alongside other qualified candidates,” said Amatullah, who is from Bloomingdale, Ill., and recently started her first year of law school at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. “This fellowship provides me with the opportunity to pursue my legal career while being connected to a network of highly motivated students.”
Established in 1932, the Phi Kappa Phi Fellowship Program annually provides funding to first-year graduate students who are pursuing post-baccalaureate degrees across all academic disciplines. Amatullah, who received $8,500, was one of only about 50 applicants nationwide to receive the award.
While at Elmhurst, Amatullah majored in English and philosophy. She also conducted research and wrote articles on racial discrimination and unfair housing practices, and earned three awards from the Illinois College Press Association. Her article “The Black Press and Black Agency: Responses from the Defender to Chicago’s Urban Renewal Policies” was published in The Macksey Journal in September of 2021.
Also during her time as a student, she volunteered at Islamic Circle of North American Relief’s free mobile health and COVID-19 vaccine clinics, conducting patient intake duties and providing Urdu and Hindi translation services across the City of Chicago. Through her work at Chicago’s Emergency Rental Assistance Program, she helped underrepresented individuals dealing with housing crises.
As a lawyer, she hopes to dedicate herself to providing legal services to underserved communities. “I appreciate how learning the law will help me become a proponent for reform and advocacy,” she said.
Phi Kappa Phi members interested in applying for Phi Kappa Phi scholarship opportunities can contact Marisa Mancini, coordinator of National Fellowships and Scholarships, at email@example.com.