The 2019 cohort of 101 Rhodes scholars will be the most geographically diverse in the Trust’s 116-year history.
For the first time, the class of scholars will include two Global Rhodes Scholars. The new scholarship was announced in February, and the first offered by the Trust to be open to applicants from all over the world.
This year’s Global Scholars are Olga Romanova from Russia and Adam Abebe from Ethiopia. Applications for this year’s scholarships came from 32 countries.
Romanova, a current Harvard student, specialises in bio-engineering and is working on developing a temperature correlation model, which she intends to implement in a wearable device for paediatric cancer patients. Abebe studies at the University of Pennsylvania, focusing on international development through research into the Malawi population affected by HIV and AIDS and the impact of Chinese investment on Ethiopian infrastructure.
The 2019 cohort includes scholars from two new Rhodes constituencies, East Africa (Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, South Sudan, and Burundi) and Saudi Arabia.
This class will also be the largest, having grown from 83 scholars in 2013. A spokesperson for the Trust told Cherwell that they anticipate the number of scholars expanding further over the coming years.
CEO and Warden of the Rhodes Trust, Dr Elizabeth Kiss said:“It enables us to create a community of friendship and shared discovery that brings together young people from all over the world, ensuring that our Scholars are equipped to approach the world’s most complex questions with curiosity, a cooperative spirit and the ability to cross boundaries, challenge stereotypes and break down walls.
“I am extremely grateful to all the generous donors who have supported the launch of these expansion Scholarships and look forward to continuing our efforts to secure funding for additional Scholarships.”
In February, a spokesperson for the University told Cherwell: “The Rhodes Scholarships have been important to the University of Oxford since they started in 1903. They have led to many international postgraduate students being able to study here, and we are delighted that the new Global Scholarships allow for their reach to be even greater in terms of where Scholars can come from around the world.”