Melani Cruz Stokes is a student at Rutgers University, Camden, studying criminal studies and law. Raised in southern New Jersey, Melani is committed to activism and public service beyond her academics. As president of the Define American Rutgers Camden chapter, she organizes campaigns that advocate for more resources for undocumented students. Her volunteer work with the Camden County Juvenile Conference Committee is also rewarding. She gives minority Camden youth, who commit first-time minor offenses, a second chance instead of going in front of a judge and becoming another statistic in the criminal justice system. Through these experiences, she understands the importance of allies to advocate for both criminal justice reform and immigrant rights. She aspires to improve social justice for all underrepresented communities through the field of law. Upon graduation next May, she will attend law school and create more opportunities for others as an aspiring immigration/criminal attorney.
Updated May 2020
More from Melani Cruz Stokes
COVID-19 emergency fund for undocumented and international students
Together with the Rutgers-Camden Define American Chapter team, Humanity in Action Fellow Melani Cruz Stokes created a fund to help undocumented/DACAmented and international students who are excluded from receiving assistance during the COVID-19 pandemic.
2020 HIA Warsaw Fellows fill the gaps in LGBT articles on Wikipedia
This year’s HIA Warsaw Fellows filled the gaps in articles on ‘LGBT-free’ zones and equality marches in Poland.
The motivation of our Fellows to act for human rights presented in a short video
Organizacje społeczne. To działa, one of HIA Poland Fellowship's media partners, together with our Fellows created a short video where they tell about their motivation to act for human rights.
Humanity in Action Welcomes the 2020 US Fellows Cohort
From a competitive pool of applicants, 38 Fellows from the US were selected to join the 2020 Humanity in Action Fellows cohort.