There isn't a topic that Tressie McMillan Cottom can't touch. Her vast range and ability to break down a subject to make it accessible to a wider audience is why she was awarded a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship in 2020.
Tressie McMillan Cottom is someone who knows a lot about a lot of different things. One moment she's studying the problematic nature of for-profit colleges. Next, she's sharing her thoughts about beauty standards, or explaining why Sean Combs is the original influencer. McMillan Cottom's insights and intellectual contributions on a variety of topics earned her a place among the 2020 class of MacArthur Foundation Fellows. The foundation praised McMillan Cottom for her ability to break down complex topics that tangle our society into knots and make them accessible to a wide audience. This includes her research and Senate testimony on how the federal Higher Education Act can better protect students and taxpayers, and how the hustle economy has a tendency to build its foundation on the labor of Black people. Tressie McMillan Cottom isn't just part of the conversations; she's driving the conversations.