BaughonRhodesMarshall

BaughonRhodesMarshall - Thoughts on the Rhodes and Marshall...

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Thoughts on the Rhodes and Marshall by Matthew Baugh ‘01 Some General Advice about Preparation Fellowship guides like these can be very helpful in giving you a general sense of what to expect from the selection process. But be careful not to fret over your preparation too much. The very best preparation you can do is to take time during this very hectic fall semester to reflect on the things that make you an interesting person. Scouring the past four years of The Economist to build a comprehensive memory bank of current events will not help a great deal in this process. Neither will trying to figure out who is on your selection panel and then anticipating their questions. This is a genuinely enjoyable process . . . if you allow it to be. Although many people go into this with a healthy dose of good humor, I did meet a number of folks who seemed determined to ruin the good-natured spirit of the process for themselves and others. These people either avoided interactions with others altogether or asked pointed questions about others’ background in order to size up the competition. Don’t let these folks negatively color your experience. If you are confident enough in yourself, you should also be sure that, if the Rhodes and Marshall don’t work out, you can still find something interesting to do with your life! This confidence will be evident to the selection committee as well. Despite the caveat about these fellowship guides, I am attaching to this document the guide that I found most useful and comprehensive. It is by Navin Narayan, an amiable and very bright Harvard undergrad whom I had met before he passed away from cancer two years ago. There is also a copy publicly available on Harvard’s Adams House web site. Debunking the Myth of the Rhodes/Marshall “Type” There is a rumor floating around that the Marshall is more academically-oriented, while the Rhodes is more leadership-oriented. And because of that, candidates often wonder whether they should “spin” themselves differently to the two different selection bodies, or even more basically, whether they should apply only to one or the other. First of all, the rumor is largely false. Both the Rhodes and Marshall committees are vying for the very best group of students they can get, taking into account both leadership and academics. It takes only a quick peak at the biographies on the web to see that the Marshall Commission has begun to emphasize the athletic and extracurricular successes of recent classes. Similarly, the pages of recent Rhodes classes include the full range of top academic achievements on both the university and national scale. I caution you not to use two different pitches in your essays for the Rhodes and Marshall. Above all, you want the application to reflect who you are, regardless of whether you are a budding academic or want little to do with academe after you earn your various degrees. A telling sign that an increasing number of Marshalls (and Rhodies for that matter) fall into this latter category is that many have chosen to pursue the Oxford MBA in recent years.
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BaughonRhodesMarshall - Thoughts on the Rhodes and Marshall...

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