Tanya C. Lumpkins, class of 1985 and Sarah Marion, class of 2019


In this interview recorded during the 2018 Black Alumni Reunion, Tanya Lumpkins, class of 1985, and her daughter, Sarah Marion, class of 2019, share their thoughts on a Brown University family legacy and current events as they compare their experiences on campus.

The interview begins by Lumpkins explaining a bit of her family background, her attendance at Sidwell Friends School in Washington, D.C., and how she decided to attend Brown upon a suggestion from one of her classmates. She also shares her first memories of coming to campus. Conversely, Marion recalls attending public school in Washington, D.C., and first coming to campus with her mother during one of the first Black Alumni Reunions.

In discussing great memories of Brown, Lumpkins cites the Black Alumni Reunions as well as enduring friendships that began on campus both through courses and her membership in the historically Black Delta Sigma Theta sorority. Conversely, Marion discusses finding community on a campus with significantly fewer sororities and fraternities still in operation. She goes on to explain that the 2016 election of Donald Trump for President forced the university and its students to reposition themselves into supportive groups of allies for students of color and otherwise marginalized groups.

Lumpkins and Marion go on to consider the meaning of a family legacy at Brown, and feminism, sexism, and racism in light of current events. Lumpkins describes her career path after Brown and Marion concludes by describing the narrative medicine research she will conduct in her final semester.


Recorded on September 22, 2018 in Pembroke Hall, Brown University, Providence, RI
Interviewed by Mary Murphy, Nancy L. Buc ’65 LLD‘94 hon Pembroke Center Archivist

Suggested Chicago style citation: Lumpkins, Tanya C. and Marion, Sarah. Interview. By Mary Murphy. Pembroke Center Oral History Project, Brown University. September 22, 2018.


Dr. Tanya Lumpkins grew up in Washington, D.C. She attended Sidwell Friends School before moving on to Brown University where she graduated with her Sc.B. in Psychology in 1985. She then attended New York University School of Medicine where she met her husband. Lumpkins is now a rheumatologist in Takoma Park, Maryland and is affiliated with multiple hospitals in the area, including Adventist Healthcare Washington Adventist Hospital and Fort Washington Medical Center. She has three children, one of whom, Sarah Marion, will graduate from Brown in 2019.

Marion similarly grew up in Washington, D.C., where she attended public schools. After attending one of the first Black Alumni Reunions at Brown with her mother, Marion applied early decision. She began in 2015 and is completing an independent concentration of narrative medicine. She intends to pursue medical school after graduation.