Chauncey Fellowship Announces First Awards

Support Allows Students to Follow Their Passions

Yale class of 2024 students Jonathan Weiss (left) and Samantha Sims (right), with Henry “Sam” Chauncey, Jr. Photo: Judy Sirota Rosenthal

Jonathan Weiss is a young composer who works in a variety of musical styles and is passionate about connecting with people with disabilities through music. Samantha Sims, a New Haven native and New Haven Promise scholar, is bringing together Black people of the African diaspora to share a traditional meal and discuss their roots in a new tradition called Liberation Table.

Over the next year, the two Yale seniors will develop their ideas and projects with the support of the Chauncey Fellowship. Established by a generous bequest by the late Edder Bennett, the fellowship is in honor of Henry “Sam” Chauncey Jr., former secretary of Yale University, founder of New Haven’s Science Park, and past president of Gaylord Hospital.

Its aim is to remove the financial pressures that stop young people from pursuing their dreams and help bring their artistic or community service visions to light.