Two university students awarded Truman Scholarships

April 19, 2005

AUSTIN, Texas—Lauren Gilstrap and Rebekah Perry have been awarded Harry S. Truman Scholarships, making this the eighth year in a row that University of Texas at Austin students have been selected.

Recipients were selected based on leadership potential, intellectual ability and likelihood of “making a difference.”

Truman Scholars Rebekah Perry and Lauren Gilstrap with Dr. Larry Carver

Truman Scholars Rebekah Perry (left) and Lauren Gilstrap pose with Dr. Larry Carver.

Photo: Marsha Miller

Gilstrap, a native of Marshall, Texas, is a junior taking pre-medical courses and majoring in Plan II Honors and Business Honors. She is a Health and Human Services legislative assistant for Texas State Senator Judith Zaffirini and has held a similar position in the office of Senator Eliot Shapleigh. She has also coordinated a research program at The University of Texas Health Sciences Center at Houston, School of Public Health. On campus, Gilstrap is involved in student government, the Senate of College Councils and the Orange Jackets service organization. Her volunteer work includes the Settlement Home, the Texas Department of Health, Brackenridge Hospital and IMPACT. She plans to pursue a career in medicine with a focus on public health and legislative health care policy.

Perry, a native of Sugarland, Texas, is a junior majoring in Plan II Honors, Government and Philosophy. She is a Dedman Distinguished Scholar and a member of the Plan II pre-law society. She writes a weekly opinion column for The Daily Texan and is a legislative intern for State Representative Charlie Howard. She mentors local high school students through the Speak Up Speak Out! civic participation program. Perry also enjoys participating in moot court competition and counseling at Worldview Academy leadership camps. She hopes to pursue a law degree, a master’s degree in public affairs and a career in constitutional law in order to champion the cause of civil liberties.

Dr. Madeleine K. Albright, president of the Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation, announced the 75 Truman Scholars from 65 U.S. colleges and universities. The scholars were selected from among 602 candidates nominated by 299 colleges and universities. Each Truman Scholarship provides $30,000 for graduate study. Scholars also receive priority admission and supplemental financial aid at some premier graduate institutions, leadership training, career and graduate school counseling and special internship opportunities within the federal government. The 2005 Truman Scholars will assemble May 15 for a week-long leadership development program at William Jewell College in Liberty, Mo., and receive their awards in a special ceremony at the Truman Library in Independence, Mo., on May 22.

For more information contact: Michelle Bryant, College of Liberal Arts, 512-232-4730.