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WASHINGTON, DC – Today, NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ Journalists announced the recipients of the Leroy F. Aarons Scholarship Award, the Kay Longcope Scholarship Award and the Facebook Journalism Project Scholarship Awards.

Dallin Mello is the recipient of the 2021 Leroy F. Aarons Scholarship Award. Mello is a visual journalist currently based in the San Francisco Bay Area. He is currently an intern with NBC News’ Feature Video team and a student at University of California, Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism where he is studying short-form documentary production with an emphasis on cinematography. 

Alejandra Pedraza Buenahora is the recipient of the 2021 Kay Longcope Scholarship. Pedraza Buenahora received a double bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing and Media Studies from Hunter College in 2017. Following graduation from Hunter College, Pedraza Buenahora did freelance writing and consulting work for a number of social justice nonprofit organizations, followed by a paid internship at DemocracyNow! in which they did translation and engagement work for the Spanish audience of the news media organization. They are now studying at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY.

The recipients of the 2021 Facebook Journalism Project Scholarship Awards are Kevin Sanchez Farez, Isabella Gomes, Sarah Luft, Estefanía Mitre and Corey Rose.

Sanchez Farez will continue his education this fall at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, pursuing a Master of Science. As an undergraduate student at Georgia State University, Sanchez Farez was named “Journalist of the Future” by the Southeast chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. While Sanchez Farez currently connects with the stories in his community, he also aspires to become a national correspondent. 

Gomes is an infectious disease epidemiologist and public health journalist from Ontario, Canada. She previously earned a Bachelor of Arts in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from Princeton University, a Master of Arts in Investigative Journalism from Columbia University, and a Master in Public Health in Epidemiology and Biostatistics from Johns Hopkins. With the support of the Facebook Journalism Project Scholarship, Gomes will pursue a dual career in crisis reporting and clinical medicine as a medical student at Washington University in St. Louis starting this fall.

Luft is currently a brand and community manager at a nonprofit organization supporting children living with chronic medical conditions. As a journalist, Luft aims to report at the intersection of culture, ecology, and health. Luft will be attending the City University of New York (CUNY) Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism for an M.A. in Engagement Journalism this fall. 

Mitre is a senior at the University of Texas at El Paso. She is currently part of the 2021 American Society Magazine Editors Internship and works at Poets&Quants covering business, MBA, and undergraduate programs. Mitre hopes to use her reporting to shed light on underreported voices and promote inclusion in the media industry.

Rose is a print/audio/visual journalist, director and storyteller from Jacksonville, FL. He is the student representative for the South Florida chapter of NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ Journalists, a proud member of the National Association of Black Journalists and an incoming audio student at the University of California, Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.

For more information about scholarships and student opportunities, visit


About NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ Journalists

NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ Journalists is a journalist-led association working within the news media to advance fair and accurate coverage of LGBTQ communities and issues. We promote diverse and inclusive workplaces by holding the industry accountable and providing education, professional development and mentoring For more information, visit