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Photo by Eric Sucar, University Communications, University of Pennsylvania

The day after College senior Anea Moore won the 2019 Rhodes Scholarship, she could hardly make it down Locust Walk — she kept getting stopped by people congratulating her.

Moore was named one of 32 American Rhodes Scholars on Nov. 17 out of 880 applicants who were endorsed by their colleges. Rhodes recipients receive full financial support to study for graduate degrees at the University of Oxford, and the scholarship is considered one of the most prestigious academic awards in the world.

Moore said the Rhodes Scholarship is an opportunity she never expected. “This is a place that my family has never gone,” she said.

“For me, Rhodes and Oxford is about more than just the degree. It’s about the experience and knowledge which you gain, and actively using that knowledge and experience to make the world a better place for those who don’t have access to it," Moore said.

Moore will study toward a doctor of philosophy in social policy at Oxford. She is primarily interested in education, family, and economic development policy.

Since her freshman year, Moore has volunteered at Henry C. Lea Elementary School in West Philadelphia. She started teaching music there, and now also does volunteer work to engage families with the school. Moore said she wrote her Rhodes essay on the impact she has had on those families.

At Penn, Moore co-chaired last year’s 1vyG conference for first-generation, low-income students across the Ivy League. She also served for two years on the board of PennFirst, an organization for FGLI students.

“All of us at Penn are incredibly proud of our newest Rhodes Scholar Anea Moore,” President Amy Gutmann told Penn Today. “She shows a passion for engagement and embodies the finest attributes of Penn scholars who are working to make a profound difference in the world.”

Penn has now produced 27 Rhodes Scholars. Last year, one student won an American Rhodes Scholarship, and another won a Malaysian Rhodes Scholarship.

In April, Moore also received the Harry S. Truman Scholarship, which provides recipients up to $30,000 to attend graduate or professional schools and pursue careers in public service.

A few years ago, Moore was planning on attending law school after college, but said the Rhodes Scholarship “wasn’t on [her] radar.” After her academic advisor recommended applying for the scholarship and returning to attend law school in America, Moore remembers thinking, “I would never do that," but said she gradually warmed up to the idea.

Moore added that she wants to go to Oxford so she “can take all that knowledge and gather it and bring it right back here to Philadelphia, in the city where [she] was born and raised.”