Mez Belo-Osagie, from Lagos, Nigeria and Accra, Ghana, is pursuing a PhD in political science at Stanford School of Humanities and Sciences. She earned a bachelor's degree cum laude in political science and African studies from Yale, and a JD from Harvard Law School. Mez plans to combine empirical research and impact litigation to limit the reach, influence, and punitiveness of the carceral state. At Yale, she co-founded the Yale Young African Scholars Program and won the James Gordon Bennett Prize for her senior thesis on the Boko Haram insurgency. After college, she worked at a counterinsurgency-focused think tank and at the Legal Defense and Assistance Project, challenging torture in Nigerian prisons. At Harvard Law School, she was the Supreme Court Co-Chair of the Harvard Law Review, represented indigent defendants as a student-attorney, and, with the Lloyd Gaines Memorial Team, won Harvard’s Ames Moot Court Competition.