Harry S. Truman Scholarship
The Harry S. Truman Scholarship is a highly competitive and prestigious federal scholarship granted to U.S. college juniors for demonstrated leadership potential and a commitment to public service. The scholarship is in the amount of $30,000 toward a graduate education. According to the Washington Post, the Truman Scholarship's "sole aim is to pick out people with potential to become leaders—then provide support to help them realize their aspirations." 
Congress created the scholarship in 1975 as a living memorial to the 33rd president of the United States. Instead of a statue, the Truman Scholarship is the official federal memorial to its namesake president.
On May 30, 1974, Senator Stuart Symington of Missouri sponsored S.3548, formally titled "A bill to establish the Harry S Truman Memorial Scholarships." Symington held the same Class 1 Senate seat that Truman had held from 1935-1945 before becoming Vice President. The Senate passed the bill on August 2, and the House followed suit on December 17. Two similar House bills, H.R.15138 sponsored by William J. Randall of Missouri and H.R.17481 sponsored by James G. O'Hara of Michigan, were set aside in favor of Symington's bill.
The bill was signed by President Gerald Ford and enacted as Public Law 93-642 on January 4, 1975 and entered the United States Statutes at Large as 88 Stat. 2276-2280, and the United States Code as 20 U.S.C. 2001-2013. It now operates as Program 85.001, governed by 45 CFR 1801 as published in the Code of Federal Regulations in the Federal Register.
The Truman Scholarship is administered by the Harry S Truman Scholarship Foundation, an independent federal executive branch agency. It is governed by a 13-member Board of Trustees headed by President Madeleine Albright, who says the foundation "serves as a gateway for America's public service leaders" and "does a remarkable job of identifying future change agents." Eight board members are appointed by the U.S. President, including a state governor, a city or county chief executive, a federal judge, a state judge, a representative of higher education, and three members of the public. The remainder of the board comprises two Senators, two Representatives, and the United States Secretary of Education (ex-officio). The Foundation's operations are overseen by full-time Executive Secretary Dr. Andrew Rich. Its endowment, which takes the form of a federal trust fund held in the U.S. Department of the Treasury, is $55 million.
The scholarship is awarded to approximately 50-75 U.S. college juniors each year on the basis of four criteria: service on campus and in the community, commitment to a career in public service (government, uniformed services, research, education, or public interest/advocacy organizations), communication ability and aptitude to be a "change agent," and academic talent that would assure acceptance to a first-rate graduate school. More broadly, Truman Scholars possess intellect, leadership skills, and passion that would make them a likely force for the public good in any field.
Candidates are selected after an arduous application process. Students must first win the nomination of their undergraduate university. Each undergraduate institution in the United States is allowed up to four nominations, but many schools receive dozens of applications. Roughly six hundred to seven hundred students are nominated by their college or university and up to 60 are selected. Schools can nominate up to four students as well as up to three transfer students. No particular career, service interest, or policy field is preferred during the process. Each year, the Truman Scholarship is awarded to one or two students from institutions that have never had a Truman Scholar.
Scholars currently receive an award of $30,000 going toward up to three years of graduate education leading to a career in the public service. Winners also benefit from a network of other scholars through the Truman Scholars Association and lasting friendship, which is encouraged by the Truman Scholars Leadership Week at William Jewell College in Liberty, Missouri, and the Truman Library in Independence, Missouri, during which new scholars collaborate on policy projects. Scholars accept a 10-week Summer Institute internship in Washington, D.C., which features additional professional development training. Of this group, a small number continue federal agency jobs for a full year as part of the Truman Albright Fellows program.
Certain graduate and professional schools give some degree of priority and funding to applicants who are Truman Scholars. Truman Scholars are exempt from taking the written section of the U.S. Foreign Service Exam. Scholars also automatically become part of the Truman Scholars Association, the independent alumni association that works to foster additional opportunities and networking for Scholars.
Notable Truman Scholars
- See also: Truman Scholars category
- Ernest Calderón (1977), Member of the Arizona Board of Regents 
- Janet Napolitano (1977), Governor of Arizona, 2003–2009, Secretary of Homeland Security under President Barack Obama
- Frederick G. Slabach (1977), Texas Wesleyan University President, Dean Emeritus and Professor of Law, Former Executive Secretary of the Truman Scholarship Foundation
- Dwight Dively (1978), Director of Finance for the City of Seattle 
- Awilda R. Marquez (1978), Director of the Department of Excise and Licenses, Denver, Colorado
- Keith B. Richburg (1978), Author and correspondent for the Washington Post 
- Robert J. Van Der Velde (1979), Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, Palm Beach State College
- Jeffrey Toobin (1980), senior legal analyst for CNN and staff writer at The New Yorker
- David Adkins (1981), Vice-Chancellor of the University of Kansas Medical Center; Executive Director of the Council of State Governments
- Bill de Blasio (1981), New York City Mayor
- Linda Epperly (1981), Assistant United States Attorney for Oklahoma
- Bill Halter (1981), former Lieutenant Governor of Arkansas and U.S. Senate candidate
- Dan Sichel (1981), Deputy Associate Director, Division of Research and Statistics, Federal Reserve
- George Stephanopoulos (1981), broadcaster and political advisor
- David Cooley (1982), Deputy Governor of Tennessee
- Matt Crowl (1982), Deputy Chief of Staff to the Mayor of Chicago
- Leslie Koch (1982), President of the Governors Island Preservation and Education Corporation 
- Laurel McFarland (1982), Executive Director, National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration 
- Andra Samoa (1982), CEO of American Samoa Power Authority 
- Thomas Sugrue (1982), professor of history and sociology at the University of Pennsylvania
- Chris Coons (1983), U.S. Senator for Delaware
- Russ Dallen (1983), Editor-in-chief of the Latin American Herald Tribune, and previously the Daily Journal
- Dan Gelber, Florida State Senator and Florida Attorney General Candidate.
- Todd F. Gaziano (1983), Director of the Center for Legal & Judicial Studies at the Heritage Foundation 
- Luis Ubiñas (1983), President of the Ford Foundation
- Mark Cannon (1984), Chief of Staff, Assn of Public-Safety Communications Officials International
- William W. Mercer (1984), United States Attorney for Montana
- Daniel H. Pink (1984), author of A Whole New Mind; former chief speech writer for Vice President Gore
- Susan E. Rice (1984), U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations; former Assistant Secretary of State
- William E. Thro (1984), Solicitor General for the Commonwealth of Virginia, Professor and University Counsel for Christopher Newport University 
- Bob Morgan (1984), President and CEO of the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce
- William "Brother" Rogers (1985), Assistant Director of Programs Stennis Center for Public Service Leadership
- Wayne W. Williams (1985), Colorado Secretary of State
- Ted Deutch (1986), Current member of U.S. House of Representatives from Florida's 19th congressional district, former Democratic member of the Florida State Senate
- Autumn Fiester (1986), Senior Fellow at the Center for Bioethics at the University of Pennsylvania 
- Margot Rogers (1986), Chief of Staff to United States Secretary of Education Arne Duncan
- Michael W. Welch (1986), Director, National Association of Air Traffic Specialists, Mayor Pro Tempore, North Pole, Alaska, State Deputy of Alaska for the Knights of Columbus 
- Mark Lemley (1986), Professor of Law, Stanford Law School
- Michelle Alexander (1987), Associate Professor of Law, Ohio State University, civil rights advocate and writer
- Maryam Banikarim (1987), Chief Marketing Officer at Univision 
- Neil Gorsuch (1987), Circuit Judge for the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
- Brad Lander (1989), Member of the New York City Council, representing the 39th Council District in Brooklyn
- Catherine Sheehan (1989), Deputy Assistant Inspector General at the Department of Justice 
- George Herbert Walker IV (1989), CEO of Neuberger Berman
- Jason Saul (1989), CEO of Mission Measurement, Lecturer of Social Enterprise at Kellogg School of Management
- Noah Feldman (1990), Professor of Law, Harvard Law School
- Amy Hungerford (1992), Professor and Director of Undergraduate Studies of English at Yale University
- Rich Constable (1993), former assistant U.S. attorney, Commissioner of the N.J. Department of Community Affairs
- Maj. John Carr (1993), former United States Air Force prosecutor at the Guantanamo Bay detainment camp 
- Rodney Martin (1993), National Chairman of Reform Party USA and former member of the Arizona Commission of Indian Affairs
- Rachel Paulose (1993), United States Attorney for Minnesota
- Stacey Abrams (1994), Georgia House Minority Leader, 84th District
- William J. Dobson (1994), Journalist and Author of The Dictator's Learning Curve.
- Naomi M. Barry-Perez (1995), Director of the Civil Rights Center, U.S. Department of Labor
- Glenn O. Brown (1995), former Executive Director of Creative Commons
- John Cranley (1995), Cincinnati City Councilmember
- Daniel S. Fridman (1995), Senior Counsel to the Deputy Attorney General
- Michele Gavin (1995), U.S. Ambassador to Botswana, Former Senior Director for African Affairs at the National Security Council and Senior Advisor to the President of the United States.
- Tiffany Graham (1995), Associate Professor of Law at University of La Verne College of Law
- Eric Greitens (1995), Chairman and CEO of The Mission Continues
- Jenifer J Harr (1995), Senior Research Scientist, American Institutes for Research
- Maya Kulycky (1995), ABC News correspondent
- Ian Larkin (1995), Assistant Professor at Harvard Business School
- Edward Miguel (1995), Associate Professor of Economics at UC-Berkeley
- Heidi A Ramirez (1995), Director, Urban Education Collaborative at Temple University College of Education
- Darci L Vetter (1995), International Trade Advisor at Senate Finance Committee
- Dayne Walling (1995), Mayor of Flint, Michigan
- Jake Zimmerman (1995), Missouri State Representative, 83rd District
- Phil Carter (1996), Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Detainee Affairs
- Corine Hegland (1996), Writer, The National Journal, 2006 James Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism
- Anton Orlich (1997), Portfolio Manager at CalPERS
- Jedediah Purdy (1996), Author and Professor, Duke University School of Law
- Justin Phillips (1997), Assistant Professor of Political Science at Columbia University
- Noam Scheiber (1997), Senior Editor of The New Republic
- Leonardo Martinez-Diaz (1998), Deputy Assistant Secretary at United States Department of Treasury, former Fellow and Deputy Director at Brookings Institute
- Leo J Wise (1998), Chief Counsel, Office of Congressional Ethics, U.S. House of Representatives
- David Haskell (2000), Deputy Editor of New York Magazine; Co-founder of Kings County Distillery
- Mac Schneider (2001), Senator, District 42, North Dakota State Senate
- Jon Favreau (2002), President Barack Obama's Director of Speechwriting
- Cyrus Habib (2002), State Senator, Washington State Senate
- Matt Delligatti (2007), Mayor of Fairmont, West Virginia
Michael Dakduk (2010), former CEO of Student Veterans of America (SVA)
Michael Long (2013) current CEO of Sail Future
- Present Scholars, Future Leaders
- 20 U.S.C. 2001-2013
- 45 CFR 1801
- Truman Scholarship Foundation members
- Primary selection criteria for scholarship
- Who are Truman Scholars?
- Each nominated application is then examined by a regional review panel and finalists are then selected for an interview. The interviews are conducted by panels of former Truman scholars, trustees of the board, and notable national public servants. These panelists then make final selections of scholarship winners, generally attempting to choose one from each of the 50 states. How many students participate in the competition each year?
- There has never been a Truman Scholar from my school. Do I have a chance?
- What benefits do Truman Scholars receive?
- Ernest Calderón named Man of the Year for 2004
- Keith Richburg - Official Site of Washington Post Reporter and Author of Out of America: A Black Man Confronts Africa
- Press Release, Governors Island Preservation and Education Corporation
- NASPAA - National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration
- Pacific Magazine: AMERICAN SAMOA: New Power Authority CEO Controversial Selection
- Todd F. Gaziano
- Deseret Morning News | Laws test states' rights
- Center for Bioethics
- North Pole, Alaska - HOME
- Press Release: Univision Names Maryam Banikarim Chief Marketing Officer
- DOJ/OIG Organization - Oversight and Review Division Text Version
- Two Prosecutors At Guantanamo Quit in Protest: Rather than take part in military trials they considered rigged against alleged terrorists held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba JESS BRAVIN / Wall Street Journal 1aug2005
- The Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation
- Truman Scholars Association
- Truman Alumni Directory on bigsight.org