GSOC Distress Fund for Yesenia Fernandez-Selier

This is a fundraising campaign by GSOC-UAW 2110, the union of graduate student workers at NYU, to create a distress fund to support our colleague, Yesenia Fernandez-Selier. We welcome donations from our members, other units, locals, comrades, friends, and supporters! 

Yesenia is a Doctoral Candidate in Media, Culture, and Communication in NYU's Steinhardt School, and is a member of our union. She is studying the interlinked legacies of film history, performance, and colonialism across the Atlantic. Her doctoral research reflects her own practice as one of New York’s most prized Afro-Cuban dance instructors and historians, and she is a major source of spiritual support for much of New York and New Jersey’s Afro-Cuban community. Those of us who know Yesenia are regularly inspired, energized, and supported by her warmth, intelligence, comradery, and strength.

Yesenia is also a single mother of triplets, and supports them along with her own mother. She also supports her wider family in Cuba, including her father who has recently fallen ill. In addition, within the past year, she has developed a chronic illness, which has been a drain on her time and finances. In true Yesenia style, she has managed to meet all of her doctoral requirements despite supporting 4+ dependents and suffering from illness. Beyond her basic requirements, she has published three peer-reviewed articles, has attended all of the major academic meetings in her field, and is currently co-authoring the first anthology about the Cuban Filmmaker Gloria Rolando. But combined, all of these obligations have taken a toll financially. Now entering her sixth year—her first without funding—Yesenia does not have the funds to pay her family’s rent starting in June.

We are raising funds to support Yesenia as she, her sons, and her mother face potential eviction. We are hoping to help her pay a few months of rent, along with utilities and food costs for her and her family during those months. If, collectively, we can help Yesenia get by during this period, she’ll be able to get her mind off of her and her family’s survival for a short period so she can finish her degree.

It is standard practice for unions to raise distress funds for members in need. Our union's constitution reads: "It shall be the duty of each member to render aid and assistance to brother or sister members in cases of illness, death or distress." 

Now is the moment to support! Please give as much as you can -- however big or small. We need these funds quickly so that Yesenia and her family can remain in their home and so that Yesenia can take care of her health, and focus again on work and school. 

Together we can support this amazing person and the multiple contributions she makes to all of our lives and to academia as a whole.
  • Anonymous 
    • $100 
    • 28 mos
  • Frances Hogan 
    • $50 
    • 29 mos
  • Ellis Garey 
    • $15 
    • 29 mos
  • Devyn Benson 
    • $50 
    • 29 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $300 
    • 30 mos
See all

Organizer and beneficiary

Colette Perold 
Brooklyn, NY
Yesenia Selier 
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