Graduate awarded Rhodes Scholarship
Zimbabwe native plans to study sustainability during time at Oxford
December 14, 2009, 9:24 pm·
Sarah Jane Littleford '09 was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship Monday.
International Rhodes results were announced on a staggered basis. Littleford's native Zimbabwe was the final country for which results were released. Domestic Rhodes results were announced in late November.
Five international students from Penn applied for the scholarship this year, the largest number that the Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships has seen in ten years. Of these five, three were announced as finalists.
Littleford was the only student from Penn — domestic or international — to be awarded the scholarship. She is among one of two recipients selected from Zimbabwe.
“We’re all very proud of her,” said CURF Director Harriet Joseph. “She lives by what she believes in — the idea of sustainability and helping third-world countries become more sustainable.”
Joseph added that after Littleford leaves Oxford, she will return to Zimbabwe to “help her homeland work on sustainability issues.”
According to a press release, the results were announced after Littleford’s interview with the selection committee in Zimbabwe.
While at Penn, Littleford earned a Bachelor’s of Arts degree magna cum laude with an individualized double major in sustainable development and environmental studies. A Benjamin Franklin Scholar, she was invited to speak at the College of Arts and Sciences graduation ceremony.
She intends to pursue a master’s degree in the Nature, Society and Environmental Policy program at Oxford.
Littleford is the fifth Penn graduate to receive a Rhodes Scholarship since 1999, the year CURF was established.
The scholarship provides the opportunity to study at Oxford University for a year or more and is considered among the world’s most prestigious academic distinctions.