South Australian Rebecca Richards is the first indigenous Australian to receive a prestigious Rhodes scholarship to study at Oxford University
Established in the will of Cecil Rhodes in 1902, the Rhodes is the oldest and perhaps the most prestigious international graduate scholarship program in the world.
Intellectual excellence is required of Rhodes Scholars, but it is not enough to earn this outstanding educational opportunity.
Rhodes' vision in founding the Scholarship was to develop outstanding leaders who would be motivated to "esteem the performance of public duties as their highest aim."
Cecil Rhodes' will outlines four criteria to be used in the election of Scholars:
- Literary and scholastic attainments,
- Energy to use one's talents to the full,
- Truth, courage, devotion to duty, sympathy for and protection of the weak, kindliness, unselfishness and fellowship,
- Moral force of character and instincts to lead, and to take an interest in one's fellow beings.
A class of 82 Scholars is selected each year from Australia, Bermuda, Canada, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Jamaica and Commonwealth Caribbean, Kenya, New Zealand, Pakistan, Southern Africa (including South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Namibia, and Swaziland), United States, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.
Rhodes Scholars join just over 20,000 students from more than 140 countries currently studying at Oxford, the oldest university in the English-speaking world, were they are enriched by the stimulating and rigorous education and the vibrant cultural and community life.
Over 7,000 Rhodes Scholars have gone on to serve at the forefront of government, the professions, commerce, the arts, education, research and other domains. They are well known advocates for expanded social justice, and have advanced the frontiers of science and medicine.
The Rhodes Scholarships reflect one of the most visionary acts of educational philanthropy in history, making the Rhodes legacy one that is felt the world over.
University of Adelaide students who wish to informally discuss their potential application are welcome to speak to Professor Richard Russell, Dean of Graduate Studies as the University of Adelaide or contact the Honorary Secretary for South Australia.