Naval Academy student from Atlanta selected as Rhodes Scholar

A U.S. Naval Academy student from Atlanta is among this year’s 32 Americans chosen as Rhodes Scholars.

Sarah A. Skinner is a senior at the United States Naval Academy, where she majors in political science, according to her profile shared by the Rhodes Trust. She will go to England next October to study at the University of Oxford, where her scholarship will cover all expenses for at least two years of study.

Skinner has held multiple leadership posts at the Naval Academy and currently serves as a company commander responsible for 150 midshipmen, her Rhodes Scholar profile shows. She joined the rugby team having never played the sport and last year was one of five finalists for the Sorenson Award, given to the nation’s top female collegiate rugby player. She is currently the rugby team captain and was selected for USA Rugby’s Olympic Development Program.

Skinner’s honors thesis examines the role of “middle powers” in international competition and their capacity to mitigate hegemonic war. At Oxford, she plans to complete a Master of Philosophy degree in International Relations.

The class of U.S. Rhodes scholars for 2022 includes the largest number of women ever selected for the scholarship in one year, the Rhodes Trust announced Sunday.

The selection process was completed virtually for the second year in a row due to the coronavirus pandemic. Applicants must be endorsed by their college or university. Selection committees from 16 U.S. districts then choose and interview finalists before electing two students from each district.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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