Grad School Femtoring

Grad School Femtoring, LLC, founded by Doctora Yvette Martínez-Vu, provides first-gen students of color with support, skills, and tools to empower themselves to thrive in grad school and beyond. 

our mission

on A Mission to Support First-Gen BIPOCs in The pursuit of higher education and Beyond

The mission of GSF is to demystify higher education, foster personal growth and sustainable productivity, and supports first-generation Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) in reaching their academic and personal goals through a compassionate and social justice informed lens.

The word femtoring in Grad School Femtoring refers to the act of mentoring through an intersectional and feminist lens. It also calls attention to how this type of service work is often gendered and undervalued. Femtorship is at the core of GSF’s mission in that it’s a necessary component for holistically supporting first-generation BIPOCs. 

Grad School Femtoring is for you if you are one of the following:

Headshot of Dra. Yvette wearing a hot pink top, crossing her arms, and smiling into the camera.
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meet the founder

Dra. Yvette

Hola! I’m Dra. Yvette Martínez-Vu, a first-gen, disabled, Chicana grad school and productivity coach, consultant, author, and speaker. My higher education femtoring journey started in graduate school when I landed my first job as a grad student mentor at the UCLA Undergraduate Research Center. It was through femtoring Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellows that I uncovered my strong desire to pursue a career where I could use my strengths to be in service of others. 

More about me and my work: Motherhood and motherwork is a core part of my identity and one lens through which I compassionately support others. In 2014, I co-founded the Chicana M(other)work Collective, a project informed by the gendered, classes, and racialized experiences of mothers of color in academia. This project has turned into a podcast, blog, and bestselling book, The Chicana M(other)work Anthology, published by the University of Arizona Press in 2019. 

Before graduating with my PhD in 2016, I learned that I did not want to become a professor and instead wanted to dedicate my time to more service-oriented positions. I earned my PhD in 2016 and secured a job as a scholarship advisor at the UCLA Undergraduate Research Center, where I helped students apply for and win national and international merit scholarships. In 2017, I transitioned into the role of Assistant Director for the UCSB McNair Scholars Program where I was promoted to Associate Director and ran the daily operations of the program, until I left in 2021 to start my own coaching business.

I now specialize in supporting first-generation BIPOCs who plan to or are navigating grad school by teaching them concrete writing, planning, and organizing skills and offering compassionate and confidence-boosting support through accountability and structure.  I support my femtees in reaching their academic and personal goals, no matter how big or wild those dreams are!


My Academic and
Career Highlights Include:

-PhD in Theater in Performance Studies

-Mellon Mays Fellow, UC Cota Robles Fellow, and Ford Foundation Dissertation Fellow

-Co-author of, Is Grad School for Me?: Demystifying the Application Process for First-Gen BIPOC Students, with University of California Press (2024)

-Co-editor of the bestselling Chicana M(other)work Anthology with University of Arizona Press (2019)

-Experience assisting my clients in applying for and getting admitted into top graduate programs and winning national fellowships

-Support of the academic and personal progress of first-gen, low-income, and nontraditional BIPOC students

-Program design, implementation, and assessment for academic programs, coaching programs, courses, and workshops to facilitate graduate-school preparation and professional development

-Management experience, including hiring, training, and supervising part-time and full-time staff, graduate students, and contract workers

-Grant writing experience for university and federal grants

-College level and K-12 level teaching and curriculum development

-Public speaking for groups of 20-200+ people

-Conference organizing and participation for 30+ conferences

-Awarded 20+ prestigious grants and awards

-Budget management of up to $1.8M

fun facts



I’m introverted and yet grew up doing theater, acting and stage managing, most of my childhood



I’m a mom raising two mixed race children of Mexican and Vietnamese heritage



I’m neurodivergent and chronically ill, which helps me be more compassionate with myself and others

Image of Dra. Yvette sitting down wearing a navy blue jacket and blue beaded earrings


I’m a virgo, recovering perfectionist, and people often say I’m the most organized person they know

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