- Associated Press - Sunday, November 22, 2015

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - A Duke University political science major from Indianapolis working to help marginalized populations has been selected as a Rhodes scholar.

Jay Ruckelshaus, a senior with a triple minor in philosophy, history and English, is among 32 American men and women chosen as Rhodes scholars. The recipients were announced Sunday. The scholarships cover all expenses for two or three years of study at Oxford University starting next October.

Ruckelshaus plans to pursue a master’s of philosophy degree in political theory at the prestigious university in England.

“I’m absolutely stunned to have been named a Rhodes Scholar,” Ruckelshaus said in a news release from Duke. “I channel as much credit as possible to all those who’ve helped me get here.”

He has interned in the office of Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, researching policy focusing on mental health and the criminal justice system. He also has investigated the legal history of lunch counter sit-in movements during the civil rights era as a research fellow for the American Bar Foundation in Chicago. As a research assistant at Duke, he has studied ways of conceptualizing political party corruption around the world.

Ruckelshaus, who was paralyzed in a diving accident the summer before entering Duke, is the founder and president/CEO of Ramp Less Traveled, a nonprofit that supports students with spinal cord injuries who are pursuing higher education.

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