Gabriel Fontes, Segal Fellow

Gabriel Fontes

2018 Brandeis Undergraduate Segal Fellow

Gabriel Fontes is an educator/activist from western Massachusetts who studied English and African & Afro-American studies at Brandeis University. Gabriel is committed to equalizing educational opportunities for youth and plans to use community organizing and public advocacy to pursue these goals. Gabriel sees education reform as deeply interconnected with housing justice, racial justice, and sexual violence prevention, and his activism reflects that holistic approach. In 2015, Gabriel received the Martin Luther King Jr. Fellowship to study at Brandeis University for his leadership on sexual consent education and racial justice initiatives at Amherst Regional High School. At Brandeis, Gabriel continued his sexual violence prevention work by facilitating bystander intervention trainings and by volunteering at Reach Beyond Domestic Violence, a local domestic violence agency. In 2017, Gabriel helped lead the 3rd annual “Justice Jam” Symposium on Urban Education under the mentorship of Professor Derron Wallace and received the Social Justice World of Work Fellowship from the Hiatt Career Center to intern at New York Communities for Change (NYCC) in Brooklyn. At NYCC, Gabriel worked on campaigns to protect tenant and workers’ rights, fight gentrification developments, and prevent the wholesale theft of public property by private investors. Throughout all this, Gabriel has continued his practice of youth development by volunteering in an 8th grade classroom in Amherst, tutoring and mentoring an 8th grade student from a Waltham middle school, and teaching a literature course to rising 9th grade students at an academic summer camp in New Orleans. In the fall of 2017, Gabriel honed his Portuguese and Spanish fluency while studying abroad at the Universidad de Habana in Cuba. In 2019, Gabriel will teach young people organizing skills at St. Stephen's Youth Programs through the Jewish Organizing Institute and Network (JOIN) Fellowship.