Westley W.O. Moore, a senior at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, is one of 32 American students chosen Saturday night to receive a prestigious Rhodes scholarship.
“I wasn’t actually expecting it,” Mr. Moore said. “I was totally shocked. I almost wanted them to repeat it to make sure they got it right.”
Mr. Moore, 22, an international relations major from Pasadena, Md., played wide receiver on the Blue Jays football team. He is the first Johns Hopkins student to win the award in 12 years.
Mr. Moore has served as chairman of the Men of the NAACP at Hopkins and is on the board of directors of the March of Dimes’ central Maryland chapter.
He is also working with the city public defender’s office to create a program that makes college students mentors for troubled juveniles.
Raised in the Bronx, N.Y., Mr. Moore is a certified paratrooper and a first lieutenant in the U.S. Army Reserves. He will begin active duty at military intelligence school in Arizona next spring.
Joshua D. Nassiri of Hayden, Idaho, a midshipman at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, and Thomas M. Pallathy of Newark, Del., who attends the University of Delaware, also were named Rhodes scholars.
The winners were selected by eight regional committees from among 950 applicants who were endorsed by 327 colleges and universities throughout the nation.
Rhodes scholarships, created in 1902 by the will of British philanthropist Cecil Rhodes, provide two or three years of study at Oxford University in England. The winners are selected on the basis of high academic achievement, personal integrity, leadership potential and physical vigor, among other attributes.
Yale University placed three students, the most of any institution, on this year’s list of winners. Harvard University, which has 295 winners over the years, the most of any U.S. institution, didn’t have any recipients this year.