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Four Students Receive Rhodes

By Nanaho Sawano, CONTRIBUTING WRITER

Harvard students have continued the University's tradition of dominating the Rhodes Scholarship competition this year, winning four of 32 American Rhodes Scholarships for 1998.

The Harvard students are Roy E. Bahat '98 of Leverett House, Valerie J. MacMillan '98 of Adams House, Julia Raiskin '98 of Pforzheimer House and Owen S. Wozniak '98 of Quincy House.

Harvard topped the list with the most winners from one school.

Fellowships Director at the Office of Career Services (OCS) Paul A. Bohlmann, said that he was "extraordinarily happy" for the four people who won, and that Harvard students typically do extremely well in the Rhodes Scholarship competition.

"I think it's important to put this in perspective," Bohlmann said. "Harvard is one of 300 or so school nominating candidates. To have four out of 32 is phenomenal."

"The average number of Harvard students becoming Rhodes scholars annually is 5.3, Bohlmann said.

"The low number is zero, and the high number is 10," he said.

Rhodes scholarships were established in 1904 by the estate of Cecil Rhodes, a British philanthropist and colonialist. The names of the winners were announced Saturday by the Rhodes Scholarship Trust at Pomona College in Claremont, Calif.

The winners will receive two-year post-baccalaureate scholarships to attend Oxford University in England next fall.

Bahat, a social studies concentrator and president of Phillips Brooks House Association, said he will be studying urban economics at Oxford.

"I think it's important to understand where jobs are created, where people decide to live," said Bahat, who helped create a Washington D.C. program providing educational support for families living in public housing.

"I plan to work somewhere in cities, either in a community organization or a city government," he said. On being asked whether he planned to return to New York City, the native New Yorker had one word: definitely.

MacMillan, a government concentrator, said that she plans to obtain two masters degrees at Oxford, one in environmental management and the other in industrial relations and human resource management.

"I'm thrilled, it's wonderful," said MacMillan, who is also a Crimson executive. "I wasn't exactly prepared for this."

In the future, MacMillan wishes to be actively involved in American environmental policy.

"I want to do environmental policy somewhere in the American west," said MacMillan, who is from Eagle, Idaho. She said she plans to work on rewriting the country's water laws.

"If you're at all able to participate in the Rhodes Scholarship, do it. It's 100 percent worthwhile," MacMillan said.

Raiskin, a social anthropology concentrator, said she plans to obtain a masters or doctoral degree in Eastern European studies, concentrating on the politics of transition from socialism to capitalism affecting Eastern European studies.

"It's a bit of merit, it's a bit of luck," she said. "I feel very fortunate."

Raiskin was the head of the Perspective last year and does volunteer work in her spare time.

Wozniak, of Anchorage, Alaska but recently transplanted to Silverton, Ore., could not be reached for comment.

Julia Rubin, a tutor in Quincy House and a friend of Wozniak's, said that she was thrilled to hear the news.

"He's a very bright guy, a free spirit who is his own person. Which is great because the Rhodes isn't know for [choosing unconventional people]," Rubin said.

Wozniak is a history and literature concentrator who said she plans to study philosophy in European literature at Oxford.

He has been active in community service through his work in a homeless shelter. He has also taught anger management and conflict resolution to sixth graders in Boston.

The winners of the Rhodes Scholarship overcame many hurdles in competition, according to Bohlmann.

In addition to excellent academic ability, leadership, community service and athletics or vigor, the selection committee looks for a good plan of study at Oxford, and a compelling reason why a candidate would be a good investment, Bohlmann said.

The selection process starts at the university level, where Harvard students submit their Rhodes application to a selection/endorsement committee headed by Dean of College Harry R. Lewis'68.

This year's 32 scholars were chosen from a group of 990 applicants from 314 colleges and universities in the United States.

The results for Harvard students who are competing for the Canadian Rhodes Scholarships have not been announced yet. The winners will be announced sometime next week, Bohlmann said.

--The Associated Press contributed to the reporting of this story.

In addition to excellent academic ability, leadership, community service and athletics or vigor, the selection committee looks for a good plan of study at Oxford, and a compelling reason why a candidate would be a good investment, Bohlmann said.

The selection process starts at the university level, where Harvard students submit their Rhodes application to a selection/endorsement committee headed by Dean of College Harry R. Lewis'68.

This year's 32 scholars were chosen from a group of 990 applicants from 314 colleges and universities in the United States.

The results for Harvard students who are competing for the Canadian Rhodes Scholarships have not been announced yet. The winners will be announced sometime next week, Bohlmann said.

--The Associated Press contributed to the reporting of this story.

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