Author: Charles McNair


In May, UGA’s newest Rhodes Scholar, Juliet Elizabeth Allan — Terry’s second ‘Rhoadie’ in the last six years and the university’s 23rd overall — capped a remarkable college career of epic achievements in appropriate style.

She climbed 14,411-foot Mt. Rainier, the fifth-highest promontory in the contiguous United States.

“It’s a fairly technical ascent,” says Allan. “It’s the mountain to do if you want to know if you’re really interested in mountaineering.”

Allan tethers her urge to excel, to discover — to matter — to a sparkling intelligence and deeply held personal values. At the tender age of 23, she has produced a list of achievements that seems to stretch 14,000 feet.

Consider the Rhodes. Only 32 of these summa scholarships are awarded to U.S. students annually, and they go to the cream of the cream of American scholars. Recipients attend England’s Oxford University for two years of mostly self-guided study. In 2013, the Rhodes selection committee chose Allan from 838 best-and-brightest nominees at 302 colleges and universities.

The Rhodes is, all by itself, a life-altering achievement. But in Allan’s case, it’s just more icing on the cake. Consider the following.

In December 2012, Allan graduated with — are you ready? — a bachelor’s degree in Arabic, a second bachelor’s in economics, a third bachelor’s in international affairs, and a master’s degree in international policy. She was a Foundation Fellow, a Presidential Scholar, and a member of UGA’s chapter of the Roosevelt Institute. She belonged to the Phi Kappa Phi, Palladia, and Blue Key honor societies.

There’s more.

At two national conferences, she presented work developed in UGA’s Center for Undergraduate Research Symposium. She taught policy analysis to undergrads. She interned at the Carl Vinson Institute of Government, and after graduation received another highly competitive internship at the Carter Center in Atlanta. She co-directed the Thomas Lay After School Tutoring Program, guiding tutoring activities for more than 100 UGA students who work with Athens elementary and middle school students. For good measure, she was part of a four-person UGA debate team that was victorious in its triennial competition against Oxford University.

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