WTAMU Student Selected as Truman Scholarship Finalist

Rik Andersen

Rik Andersen


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Out of a field of hundreds of applicants from across the nation, Jonathan Espinoza, senior broadcast journalism major and co-editor of The Prairie, has been selected as one of 10 finalists from Texas for the competitive Truman Scholarship.

Espinoza will travel to Austin on March 6 for a 20-minute interview with Truman Scholarship panelists. Each year, the Truman Foundation awards this scholarship, valued at $30,000, to 60 to 65 students who plan to pursue careers in government or elsewhere in public service.

“Jonathan is an ideal candidate for the Truman Scholarship because of his history in public service as a veteran and his dedication to effecting change at WTAMU,” said Laura Seals, the coordinator of Nationally Competitive Scholarships at West Texas A&M University. “As he developed his application, he took every edit and comment to heart and developed a stronger proposal.”

Seals said that about 600 nominated candidates apply for the scholarship each year and submit information about their “leadership, public service and academic experiences.” Espinoza began this application process for the Truman Scholarship over a year ago.

“The application process provided me the opportunity to truly reflect on my life thus far and has helped shape who I hope to be,” Espinoza said. “One of the biggest portions of the application was the development of a policy proposal, and my background as a McNair Scholar helped shape my proposal in which I wrote about a nationwide program aimed at preventing suicide among LGBT youth. I have found that my heart lies in advocacy for the LGBT community, and I hope to one day work to shape policy aimed at ending discrimination.”

According to the Truman Scholarship website, Truman Scholars receive up to $30,000 for graduate or professional education and also have the opportunity to participate in leadership development activities through internships and employment with the federal government. Students who are interested in public policy and pursuing a Truman Scholarship may contact Seals for more information.

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