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Hail Fellows!

The 2021-22 Ledecky Undergraduate Fellows

September-October 2021

Rebecca E. J. Cadenhead and Swathi Kella

Photographs courtesy of the subjects

Rebecca E. J. Cadenhead and Swathi Kella

Photographs courtesy of the subjects

Harvard Magazine welcomes juniors Rebecca E. J. Cadenhead and Swathi Kella to its editorial staff as the 2021-2022 Berta Greenwald Ledecky Undergraduate Fellows. Besides alternating as authors of the “Undergraduate” column, starting in the next issue, they will contribute articles in print and online about student activities and concerns and other aspects of Harvard life.

Cadenhead, of Dobbs Ferry, New York, and Winthrop House, is concentrating jointly in philosophy and African American studies. As a freshman, she joined The Harvard Crimson and Fifteen Minutes (The Crimson’s magazine), writing articles and columns exploring race, class, inequality, and the ethics of food and eating. She serves as associate editor at Fifteen Minutes and features editor at The Harvard Advocate. Her inaugural essay in the Advocate, “First Blood,” published in spring 2020, won a Pushcart Prize and will appear in the 2022 Pushcart anthology. Cadenhead is also a leader of the Harvard First-Year Outdoor Program, the College’s largest and oldest pre-orientation program. She spent this past summer working as an editorial intern at Harper’s Magazine and conducting research and reporting for an in-depth Fifteen Minutes article on the use of police punishment in Boston-area schools.

Kella, of Ridgewood, New Jersey, and Pforzheimer House, is concentrating in social studies with a secondary concentration in Spanish. She serves as managing editor of the Harvard Political Review, where she runs the investigative journalism fellowship and has pursued in-depth stories on migration, identity, and civil rights. Swathi also researches the intersection of law and psychology with the Harvard Implicit Social Cognition Lab; she is currently studying the debate about implicit bias. She is the president of Harvard South Asian Americans in Public Service and co-directs Ghungroo, a student production showcasing South Asian culture and art. Her writing has appeared in The Boston Globe, The Hechinger Report, Ms. Magazine, and The Harvard Advocate. This past summer, Swathi was a policy and research intern for the New York Lawyers for the Public Interest, exploring how New York City’s ubiquitous ridesharing vehicles often exclude individuals with disabilities.

The fellowships are supported by Jonathan J. Ledecky ’79, M.B.A. ’83, and named in honor of his mother. To learn about past Ledecky Fellows and their work, see