Doctoral student awarded national Newman Civic Fellowship


Marcus Stubbs, a doctoral student in Bellarmine’s Education and Social Change program, was recently awarded a Newman Civic Fellowship, a yearlong program for campus leaders who are committed to finding solutions for social problems. 

A Louisville native, Marcus has worked with numerous organizations throughout the community focusing on social justice, community-building, food equality and homelessness.  

“I want to continue to invest in the community that invested in me,” Marcus said. “I had the opportunity to continue to move up and when much is given, much is required. I don't want to sit on the things that have added value to me and not give back. So, with all the coaching and mentoring and all the things I have received in my education, I wanted to put it to good use.” 

Marcus recently worked to improve voter awareness, registration and empowerment through the Our Vote Now Weekend initiative. He brought together voters, activists, politicians and faith and community leaders for a panel discussion about young voter perspectives, understanding the ballot, criminal justice reform and racial equity, and the intersection of faith and politics. He then mobilized volunteers throughout the city for voter registration events, while maintaining COVID-19 safety precautions and navigating civil rights protests and unrest in the community following the killing of Breonna Taylor. 

Marcus is also deeply passionate about food insecurity, as reflected by his current work as the mobile market manager at the local Dare to Care food bank. He’s also conducting a comparative research study for his doctoral program on the lived experiences of staff and students using the food pantry.  

“Marcus is using his life experience for greater good, with an unparalleled drive and tenacity for moving forward in a thoughtful way,” said Dr. Elizabeth Cassady, associate dean of Academic Services at Bellarmine. 

Marcus was one of 200 students chosen for the Newman Civic Fellowship by Campus Compact, a national nonprofit that promotes public good in higher education. The honor provides learning and networking opportunities, including a national conference, that emphasize personal, professional and civic growth. The fellowship also offers paths to exclusive scholarship and post-graduate opportunities. 

“We are proud to recognize these extraordinary student leaders and thrilled to engage with them,” said Campus Compact President Andrew Seligsohn. “The experience of the last year has driven home to all of us that we need open-minded, innovative, public-spirited thinkers and doers. That is what Campus Compact is about, and the stories of our Newman Civic Fellows demonstrate it’s who they are.” 

“I want to continue to invest in the community that invested in me.”

Marcus earned his undergraduate and master’s degrees from Western Kentucky University. He’s also volunteered and studied abroad in Costa Rica, Trinidad, Tobago, South Africa and Guatemala.  

Marcus said he wants to continue to uplift the Louisville community and is grateful this fellowship is giving him the opportunity to do so. 

Tags: Diversity , Higher Education Leadership and Social Justice , PhD Higher Education Leadership , Social Justice



Located in the historic Highlands neighborhood of Louisville, Kentucky, Bellarmine University is a vibrant community of educational excellence and ethical awareness that consistently ranks among the nation’s best colleges and universities. Our students pursue an education based in the liberal arts – and in the distinguished, inclusive Catholic tradition of educational excellence, the oldest and most rewarding in the western world. It is a lifelong education, worthy of the university’s namesake, Saint Robert Bellarmine, and of his invitation to each of us to learn and live In Veritatis Amore – in the love of all that is beautiful, true and good in life.