Magazine Feature / People

DU student wins Truman Scholarship

Junior public policy and political science major Kelsey Yamasaki recently received the Truman Scholarship

Established by Congress in 1975, the scholarship provides $30,000 in funding to students pursuing graduate degrees in public service fields. He is one of 65 scholars chosen from more than 700 nominations and 233 finalists from across the U.S.

“I was in San Francisco transferring onto a flight [to] Denver when I found out about winning the Truman,” says Yamasaki. “I just started laughing in the terminal and people were looking at me like I was a little crazy.

“I feel it still hasn’t fully settled in yet.”

Yamasaki serves on the All Undergraduate Student Association Senate and has worked to improve sexual assault awareness and diversity programming on campus. A native of Honolulu, he has chaired the Hawaii State Student Conference and the Hawaii State Student Councils Legislative Committee. He also has interned with the Hawaii State Board of Education and National Education Association.

Yamasaki plans to pursue a master’s degree in public policy at DU after completing his undergraduate degree in spring 2008. Eventually, he wants to return to Hawaii to improve the status of public education.

“Everyone in the public policy program is proud of Kelsey, a deserving winner of one of the most competitive scholarships in the nation,” says Richard Caldwell, director of the public policy undergraduate program and co-director and senior lecturer in the Institute for Public Policy Studies.

“His intellect, dedication to excellence and outstanding character have deservedly been recognized by the Truman Foundation,” Caldwell says.

Comments are closed.