Meet the Fellows

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Learn more about our current Vinson Fellows below.

Meet Our Spring 2024 Fellows

Jacob ColemanJacob Coleman

Major: Ecology and Sociology
Division: Infrastructure and Community Resilience

Jacob Coleman is a second-year Ecology and Sociology student pursuing a certificate in Urban and Metropolitan Studies. As a Vinson Fellow, Jacob will be working with the Infrastructure and Community Resilience division to explore the implementation of government policy, government training, and interactions between the public and the government.

He currently serves as the SGA Senator for the School of Ecology. He has participated in the Redcoat Marching Band as a clarinet player and has served on the Sustainability Grants Selection Committee for UGA’s Office of Sustainability.

Thomas WilkersonThomas Wilkerson

Major: Political Science and International Affairs
Division: Government Services and Research

Thomas Wilkerson is a fourth-year student from Warrenton, Georgia. He is double-majoring in Political Science and International Affairs. As a Vinson Fellow, Thomas will be working with faculty member Anna Wrigley Miller in the Government Services and Research division. 

Thomas is a member of the Applied Politics Program, Richard B. Russell Security Leadership Program, and is pursuing a certificate in Data Analytics in Public Policy in addition to the Public Affairs Professional Certificate. Thomas completed an internship with the McDuffie County Government through the ACCG Civic Affairs Foundation, and has served as an intern with the Athens-Clarke County Office of Operational Analysis. He is currently interning with the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office.


Meet Our Fall 2023 Fellows

Sara Anis AliSara Anis Ali

Graduating: May 2026
Major: Political Science & International Affairs
Division: Survey Research and Evaluation Support 

Sara Anis Ali is a second-year student studying Political Science and International Affairs. As a Vinson Fellow, Sara is interested in evaluating restorative programs for juveniles to determine their effectiveness.   

Sara has interned at the Solicitor General's Office and District Attorney's in Fayette County. During her internship at the Solicitor General's Office, Sara conducted a project analyzing the Conditional Discharge Program for misdemeanor marijuana possession.    

Jai Gonzales

Jai Gonzales
December 2023
Major: Geography
Certificates: Urban Studies & GIS
Division: State Services and Decision Support

Jai Gonzales is a senior student studying Geography, with certificates in Urban Studies and GIS. They will be completing a research project with the State Services & Decision Support unit.

They have done research with UGA’s Community Mapping Lab on black spaces in Athens, including Brooklyn Cemetery and Hot Corner. They recently completed a fellowship with Trees Atlanta where they mapped and added trees to the catalog of the newly-created Atlanta Beltline Arboretum. In addition, they currently work at the State Botanical Garden of Georgia, where they have organized a cohort of students in garden-oriented learning/ development while assisting with caring for the landscape.

Meera Srinivasan

Meera Srinivasan
May 2026
Major: Political Science
Division: Survey Research and Evaluation Support

Meera Srinivasan is a second-year student studying Political Science at the School of Public and International Affairs. As a Vinson Fellow, she will be working with faculty mentor and Public Service Assistant Brian Simmons in the Survey Research and Evaluation Support unit.

Prior to becoming a Vinson Fellow, she conducted research on a variety of topics, including prison labor, zero-tolerance policy in education, drug crime and discrimination in sporting spaces. Meera works as a communications staff member at The Backpack Project, Inc., a 501(c)(3) nonprofit aimed at alleviating the burden of homelessness throughout the Southeast. She is also a Legislative Fellow with the Spencer Frye Fellowship Program.