University of Montana junior Rebecca Boslough recently won the national Truman Scholarship. The prestigious award provides top U.S. university student leaders up to $30,000 for graduate or professional school.
Truman Scholars are selected on the basis of leadership achievements and potential in public service. Boslough, who majors in resource conservation with a minor in climate change studies, is the University’s 13th Truman Scholar and the only student selected from a Montana university this year. Sixty-two students from 54 colleges and universities were selected as 2013 Truman Scholars out of 629 candidates from nearly 300 institutions.
According to the Truman Foundation, the scholarship is firmly rooted in former U.S. President Harry Truman’s belief that education promotes the general welfare of our country. The scholarship remains committed to encouraging future “change agents” of America. Many Truman Scholars go on to serve in public office or as leaders of nonprofit organizations and educators.
Boslough is a graduate of Capital High School in Helena and is a Presidential Leadership Scholar in UM’s Davidson Honors College, where she serves as a mentor for the Introduction to Honors freshman seminar. Her parents are Elaine Samuel of Helena and James Boslough of Billings. She plans to pursue a career in collaborative land management.
“Rebecca is the perfect example of scholarship and achievement at UM,” President Royce Engstrom said. “Her commitment to academics, student involvement through ASUM and volunteering in her community is a testament to her potential in her future education and her career.”
Boslough’s active leadership in a variety of campus and community activities helped her win the Truman Scholarship. She is vice president of the UM Wilderness Association and a member of UM Climate Action Now and Glacier Two Medicine Alliance for Conservation. During her internship and subsequent work for the Wilderness Society, she produced news stories, blogs, educational slideshows and videos.
She has worked as a field instructor for the Youth Forest Monitoring Program of the Helena Forest Service and The Discovery Foundation of Helena. She also has volunteered with Outdoor Explorers and Big Brothers Big Sisters, introducing children to outdoor opportunities and wilderness skills. She draws on her high school debate experience to coach public forum debate at Sentinel High School in Missoula.
Boslough also serves as a senator for the Associated Students of UM, with membership on the Transportation Board, Sustainability Committee and the Provost Search Committee. She chairs the ASUM Community Garden Committee.
She represented UM at the Washington Center’s Democratic National Convention Seminar in Charlotte, N.C., where she served as a CNN intern. She returned for the Washington Center’s Inaugural Seminar in Washington, D.C., in January. She has volunteered with many other organizations, including the UM Advocates and the League of Conservation Voters.
“Rebecca’s broad academic range has been and will continue to be part of her power,” said Laure Pengelly Drake, director of external scholarship at the Davidson Honors College. “She views the world from many angles and with a broad base of knowledge and experience.”
The 2013 Truman Scholars will gather for a leadership development program May 28 at William Jewell College in Liberty, Mo. They will receive their awards in a special ceremony at the Truman Library in Independence, Mo., on June 2.
For a listing of the 2013 Truman Scholars and more information on the program, visit http://www.truman.gov.
Photo caption: Rebecca Boslough. (UM photo by Todd Goodrich)