Twenty-two year old University of the West Indies (UWI) student, Alecia Johns, is the 2010 recipient of the prestigious Rhodes scholarship.
Ms. Johns, a final year student at the Norman Manley Law School, was selected from a field of eight candidates, comprising two males and six females.
The Governor-General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen, noted that the selection process was a demanding one, as the candidates were outstanding in their academic career and other aspects of their educational growth and development.
“Education is not simply related to the mental aspect of one’s development, but also the physical, the social and the spiritual realm; the total rounded person. We were trying to identify that one person who stood out amongst the rest, because they are all winners in their own right,” the Governor-General said at the announcement at King’s House Friday (November 20).
He also congratulated Miss Johns on her achievements, and wished her well and all the best in her studies as she moves on to Oxford University, England.
“We know that you will do yourself proud, and do Jamaica proud, and we really look forward to the contribution you will make to this nation on your return,” he said.
In her response, Miss Johns expressed her appreciation to the committee for selecting her as the 2010 Rhodes Scholar.
“This has been a tremendously rewarding experience for me in particular, and the other candidates. We have been through so much together, in this short time. You guys are all outstanding, and I am sure that you will be even more successful in the years to come,” she said.
Miss Johns is a former student of Campion College. She was awarded a First Class Honours Degree in Law at the UWI, and is now finishing her law programme at the Law School.
In terms of extra curricular activities, she is a Legislative Drafting Committee Member and the Mooting and Libraries Chairperson. She is also the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) mooting competition team leader.
Secretary of the Jamaica Rhodes Selection Committee, Peter Goldson, said that choosing the 2010 Rhodes Scholar was one of the most difficult selections the committee has ever had.
“The candidates, generally, were very strong and very small in number. They were close together, but the committee thought that Alecia Johns was the strongest candidate, and we really look forward to her going to Oxford University and doing well and making us proud,” he said.
The eight candidates were interviewed by members of the Committee at King’s House on Friday. Miss Johns will pursue the Bachelor of Civil Law (BCL) degree, one of the most highly regarded Master’s-level qualifications in the world beginning October 2010.