Philadelphia man who studies at Yale named Pennsylvania's lone Rhodes Scholar



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PITTSBURGH — A Philadelphia man pursuing a degree in African American Studies and Political Science at Yale has been named one of 32 U.S. Rhodes Scholars.

Jordan Konell will use his scholarship to pursue a master's degree in Comparative Social Policy at Oxford University in England. Konell is a senior at Yale.

Rhodes Scholarships were created in 1902 by the will of British philanthropist Cecil Rhodes. Winners are selected on the basis of high academic achievement, personal integrity, leadership potential and physical vigor, among other attributes.

Konell was editor-in-chief of the Yale Undergraduate Law Review and has worked at Philadelphia's Public Interest Law Center and as a community organizer. He's also a jazz trombonist. In New Haven, Connecticut, Konell is the executive adviser to Community Health Educators, the largest community organization on the Yale campus.

Konell was one of about 1,600 American students to seek a Rhodes Scholarship this year. In addition to the American winners, more than 40 students from around the world are receiving the scholarships this year. Many of those attend U.S. colleges or universities, but have applied through their home countries.

The American winners announced late Saturday were chosen from 207 finalists from 86 different schools.

The latest winners bring to 3,556 the number of Americans —representing 316 schools — to have won Rhodes Scholarships.

Elliott Gerson, the American secretary for The Rhodes Trust, said the values of the scholarships vary.

In general, the scholarship winners receive about $50,000 annually in the form of tuition and fees, plus an expense stipend, and transportation to and from England. The scholarships can last for two to four years, depending on the post-graduate degree the winner pursues.

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