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Rhodes


CONTENTS

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1. SNAPSHOT

The Rhodes Scholarship is to OXFORD UNIVERSITY. About 32 awards a year covering all costs. Smith endorsement required. Final campus deadline end-September. Begin application in SPRING JUNIOR YEAR. Some British Commonwealth and German students can apply in their home countries (see International Students).

2. OUTLINE

Investments in individuals rather than in project proposals.

Initiated in 1902 according to the Will of Cecil John Rhodes, the first American Rhodes Scholars were elected in 1904. A British colonial pioneer and statesman in southern Africa, Mr. Rhodes graduated from Oxford in 1881. Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) and the three-country Rhodesian Federation, was named for Mr. Rhodes, who began his career in the South African mining industry.

One to up to three years study and/or research for a graduate or undergraduate degree at Oxford University in England. A postgraduate degree course is strongly recommended. A second bachelors degree may be chosen instead (see June 2005 Rhodes Trust bulletin). Rhodes Scholars may also be eligible to receive D.Phil. funding after completing a one-year M.Sc. or M.St. in the same field, or after a two-year M.Phil. or M.Sc. by research where the D.Phil. dissertation is an expansion of the masters' research, as long as the department indicates that the doctoral work can be completed within three years of matriculation. Also, the way it works in the UK is that students normally complete a Masters degree first which then counts towards a PhD. Popular one-year degrees include the M.Sc. in Environmental Change and Management, the M.Sc. in Forced Migration, the M.Sc. in Economics and Development, the M.Sc. in Comparative Social Policy, and the M.Sc. in Medical Anthropology, and to the brand new M.Sc. degrees in African Studies and Global Health Science (public health).

While Rhodes Scholars are allowed to hold the award for one year only when they elect to do only one one-year degree, the Oxford experience is exponentially enhanced for those who remain for two or more years rather than just a single year.

Additionally, there is an affiliation between the Rhodes Trust and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) whereby Rhodes Scholars are able to apply to receive funding from the NIH to complete their Oxford doctoral research jointly at the NIH and at Oxford.

BEGIN APPLICATION AS SPRING JUNIOR.

The most advantageous time to register for a fellowship is in the spring, starting mid February. Statistics show that those who register earlier fare far better. The deadline to register for the Rhodes is the end of August. Petitions to register later may be considered from students who show exceptional promise to be successful in fellowships competitions.

Graduating senior at least 18 but not yet 24 years old on October 1 of application year. Eligibility criteria are updated periodically. Check the Rhodes website for current rules: www.rhodesscholar.org

Intellectual distinction. Academic prominence. Integrity. Interest in and respect for others. Ability to lead. Possess the energy to use talents to the full. Sports or other demonstrations of physical vigor enabling energetic and effective contribution to society. The essential prerequisite is to be of an academic standard equivalent to the likelihood of being admitted to one of the most selective graduate schools in the U.S. in the area of primary interest. An ability to talk with passion, backed by thoughtful, mature information, about the things you care about, to be a person willing to fight the world's fight.

Mr Rhodes's Will contains four criteria by which Rhodes Scholars are selected:
  • Literary and scholastic attainments.
  • Energy to use one's talents to the full, as exemplified by fondness for and success in sports. [That you are an energetic person can be demonstrated in a number of ways.]
  • Truth, courage, devotion to duty, sympathy for and protection of the weak, kindliness, unselfishness and fellowship.
  • Moral force of character and instincts to lead, and to take an interest in one's fellow beings.
A Rhodes covers the cost of studying or conducting research at Oxford, plus the Scholar receives about $1100 or more a month for living expenses, totaling about $28,000 a year. The Rhodes Trustees award 32 scholarships in the United States each year. Must be U.S. citizen. In 2002 there were 981 applicants endorsed by 319 colleges (almost three per college) = about a 3.25% chance. This is the most prestigious fellowship and also the most competitive. Minimum 3.6 GPA.

The states of the U.S. are divided into 16 Election Districts, each with about the same size pool of applicants, determined on three-year rolling averages, and adjusted periodically as necessary. Rhodes applicants will apply as a representative of their state – either the state of residence or the state of college or university training. Each district selects two Rhodes Scholars-elect.

Applicants' academic proposals are also evaluated in Oxford for suitability with Oxford programs and feasibility within the Oxford system. Final course selection occurs after Rhodes winners are announced and before Oxford admission. It is almost impossible to change course after this.

Consult the University of Oxford at www.ox.ac.uk

Plan to begin your application early Spring Semester of your junior year.

All applicants (including graduates) require formal Smith endorsement and Americans apply in Massachusetts or in the state of their legal residence.

While only citizens of the United States are eligible for the Rhodes Scholarships awarded in this country, Rhodes Scholarships are offered in more than 20 other jurisdictions. Several of these constituencies regard their citizens who study in universities in the United States as eligible for their own competition. Citizens of Bermuda, Canada, the Commonwealth Caribbean (Anguilla, Antigua, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts-Nevis, St.Lucia, St. Vincent, Trinidad and Tobago), Jamaica, Kenya, Singapore, Zambia and Zimbabwe are thus eligible to apply in their own constituencies on the basis of degrees from American universities. Further information about these competitions is available on the Rhodes website, www.rhodesscholar.org. Click "Non-U.S. Citizens" on the home page. The elections in virtually all of the other participating constituencies take place before the elections in the United States, and any eligible students would be well advised to inquire early.

Citizens of only Britain are not eligible in any country. A Briton who holds dual citizenship is eligible in the non-British country provided that country offers the Rhodes.

ALUMS: If you are not in graduate school or are a first-year graduate student, then apply through Smith. If you are a second-year (or beyond) graduate student, apply through your graduate school.

For more detailed information please review the June 2005 Rhodes Trust bulletin here. (Word Doc.)

For Rhodes application and interview strategies from past winners, look at the Live to Learn Fellowships Resource link here.

3. OTHER DESCRIPTION

The Rhodes Scholarships, the oldest international fellowships, were initiated after the death of Cecil Rhodes in 1902, and bring outstanding students from many countries around the world to the University of Oxford. The first American Scholars were elected in 1904.

Rhodes Scholars are elected for two years of study at the University of Oxford, with the possibility of renewal for a third year. All educational costs, such as matriculation, tuition, laboratory and certain other fees, are paid on the Scholar's behalf by the Rhodes Trustees. Each Scholar receives in addition a maintenance allowance adequate to meet necessary expenses for term-time and vacations. The Rhodes Trustees cover the necessary costs of travel to and from Oxford, and upon application, may approve additional grants for research purposes or study-related travel.

Website: http://www.rhodesscholar.org

4. ELIGIBILITY

Also see: http://www.smith.edu/fellowships/eligibility.php for further information about eligibility.

WHEN TO BEGIN WHICH BY SCHOOL YEAR
  • Juniors Start Application After Spring Break
  • See tips on writing an effective resume
  • ADD expanded section listing every "public" service, community involvement of any and all kinds.
(POST-)GRADUATE OR UNDERGRADUATE FELLOWSHIP
Graduate Fellowship

DOMESTIC & FOREIGN, OR FELLOWSHIPS ABROAD
Fellowship Abroad

WHERE IN THE WORLD TO USE
British Fellowship (Oxford University only)

GPA AND RELATED MINIMUMS
  • 3.8 minimum, intellectual distinction, leadership
  • (Community involvement, contribution to society, leadership or initiative, all count as much as grade level. Fellowships = character, not intellectualism alone.)
CITIZENSHIP REQUIREMENTS
U.S. citizens & citizens of many British Commonwealth and a few other countries

AGE, SCHOOL-YEAR, OTHER RESTRICTIONS
Only graduating seniors in application year, or graduates, at least 18 but not yet 24 years old on October 1 of application year.

DURATION OF FELLOWSHIP, AMOUNT OF AWARD
  • Approximately $28,000 per year for up to three years, typically two. Rhodes Scholars may also be eligible for D.Phil. funding after completing a one-year M.Sc. or M.St. in the same field,or after a two-year M.Phil. or M.Sc. by research where the D.Phil. dissertation is an expansion of the masters' research, as long as the department indicates that the doctoral work can be completed within three years of matriculation.
  • The award covers the cost of study and/or research at Oxford University as well as $1,100 or more for living expenses per month.
CHANCE OF AWARD: ODDS FOR EACH COMPETITION
  • Rhodes 3.25% or 1 in 25
  • It is prudent for seniors applying for high-odds fellowships (Gates, Luce, Marshall, Mellon, Mitchell, Rhodes) seriously to consider also applying for the Fulbright which, even though easier to win, carries immense prestige through its high name recognition.
  • The Fulbright is an ideal gap year for those planning to go on to graduate school.
  • Much material prepared for one fellowship application can be modified to fit another.
  • It is recommended that graduating applicants work also with the Career Development Office so that fellowship applications form part of an overall postgraduate planning strategy. Contact them at x2570 or x2582.
HOW SMITHIES HAVE FARED IN COMPETITIONS
0 fellows (+ 1 state & national finalist) out of 3 applicants in the 2 years 2002-2003

COMPETITION CRITERIA IN JUDGING CANDIDATES
How the Foundations Evaluate and Rate Candidates, What They Seek in Candidates & How You are Judged, Plus Other Vital Criteria Considered by the Foundations (PLEASE ALSO CONSULT THE NOTES IN THIS CATEGORY SECTION)

Four general criteria by which prospective Rhodes Scholars are to be selected:
  • literary and scholastic attainments
  • energy to use one’s talents to the full, as exemplified by fondness for and success in sports; [That you are an energetic person can be demonstrated in a number of ways.]
  • truth, courage, devotion to duty, sympathy for and protection of the weak, kindliness, unselfishness and fellowship
  • moral force of character and instincts to lead, and to take an interest in one's fellow beings.
FORMAL APPLICATION YEAR & TIME OF YEAR
Formal Application Year (Fall Term) Seniors
Early Fall Fellowship (due early October)

J-TERM GRADUATE ELIGIBILITY
Applications open to seniors graduating the January following the October that applications are finally due. Winners announced the December following the October closing date. First use of fellowship will be at the beginning of the next Oxford fall semester in the following calendar year. Check website &/or email foundation for rule variations and changes before ruling yourself in or out.

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS APPLYING FOR GATES, RHODES International Students may also apply for the Rhodes Scholarship in their home country provided that country is included in the approximately 20 jurisdictions that the scholarship is offered. A limited number of scholarships are allotted to each country.

Country/Number of Scholarships:
  • Australia 9
  • Bangladesh 1
  • Bermuda 1
  • Canada 11
  • Commonwealth Caribbean* 2
  • Germany 4
  • Hong Kong 1
  • India 6
  • Jamaica 1
  • Kenya 1
  • Malaysia 1
  • New Zealand 3
  • Pakistan 1
  • South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Namibia, and Swaziland 10
  • Singapore 1
  • Uganda 1
  • Zambia 1
  • Zimbabwe 2
*The countries of the Commonwealth Caribbean are Anguilla, Antigua, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts-Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, Trinidad and Tobago.

International Students must contact the Rhodes representative in their home country as their very first step in order to find out the rules and regulations of the Rhodes competition in their particular country. Some countries, such as India, permit only students studying at universities in India to compete. However, rules change, so always check first before making any assumptions. At least several countries permit their citizens studying in the United States to compete in the Rhodes competition in their own country.

LEVEL OF SMITH COLLEGE SPONSORSHIP
Official Endorsement

REAPPLYING FOR FELLOWSHIPS
Can win only once. Can apply again only after not winning.

DEFERRING FELLOWSHIPS
Confirm your specific situation directly with sponsoring foundation or fellowship administrators Rhodes Cannot normally be deferred. Extreme circumstances may apply.

5. WEBSITE

www.rhodesscholar.org

Rhodes Scholarship Trust
Joyce Knight, Assistant
joyceknight@rhodesscholar.org
Beth Maslowsky, Assistant
beth@rhodesscholar.org

University of Oxford: http://www.ox.ac.uk

International students contact Rhodes representatives in their home countries to obtain application information. Not all countries offer a Rhodes. For name, address of country representatives, go to the Rhodes website and choose "Non-US Citizens."