The Rhodes Trust announced yesterday the 32 American Rhodes scholars who will begin studying at England's Oxford University in the fall of 2010. The Rhodes Scholarship, which was created in 1902, covers the costs of two, three, or—in some cases—four years of study at Oxford.
Two scholars were selected from each of the 16 regional districts in the United States. The guidelines for selection highlight high academic achievement, integrity of character, a spirit of unselfishness, respect for others, potential for leadership, and physical vigor.
There were 217 finalists, and 16 hailed from institutions that had never produced a Rhodes scholar. Truman State University's Andrew McCall, who is from St. Louis, is the school's first Rhodes scholar. He was the only student to become a school's first Rhodes scholar this year.
McCall is a senior at Truman State, where he majors in philosophy and religion. According to his Rhodes Trust biography, McCall is interested in the division between analytic and continental philosophy. He is a five-time Division II All-American in swimming, and he plays the violin for the Truman State symphony. McCall will pursue a bachelor's in philosophy at Oxford.
"In most years, we elect a winner from a college that had never before had a Rhodes scholar, even after more than a century," Elliot Gerson, American secretary of the Rhodes Trust, wrote in the Rhodes Trust release.
Harvard University led all schools this year with five Rhodes scholars. Massachusetts Institute of Technology had three, while Yale University, University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill, and the U.S. Military Academy each had two recipients. The Ivy League as a whole produced 10. Four Californians received the scholarship, making the Golden State the most common home state of winners. Seven recipients play or played college athletics at the varsity level.