Three students named as finalists for Rhodes, Marshall, Mitchell scholarships

Thursday, November 14, 2019

LAWRENCE — Three students from the University of Kansas have advanced in the competition for prestigious scholarships for study in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Alex Murray is a finalist for the Mitchell Scholarship, Sam Steuart is a finalist for the Marshall Scholarship, and Steuart and Saif Bajwa are both finalists for the Rhodes Scholarship.

The Mitchell Scholarship provides funding for one year of study in Ireland. Marshall Scholarships provide funding for graduate study at any university in the United Kingdom. The Rhodes Scholarship provides expenses for one to three years of study at the University of Oxford in England.

The three finalists are scheduled to participate in interviews later this month, with final determinations on scholarship recipients to be determined following the completion of the interviews.

Students interested in applying for these awards in future years may contact the Office of Fellowships by email at

KU students have previously won nine Marshall and 27 Rhodes Scholarships. Last year, Kathryn Ammon became the first KU student to be named a Mitchell Scholar. She is currently studying at University College Dublin.

Saif Bajwa is the son of Abid Bajwa and Shazia Bajwa of Overland Park and a graduate of Blue Valley West High School. A major in political science with a minor in economics, Bajwa is also a member of the University Honors Program and was selected as a sophomore for the competitive University Scholars Program. Bajwa has served on a variety of political campaigns and worked in constituent services for Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly. He has been active on campus with Student Senate, the Student Legislative Awareness Board and the Dole Institute of Politics. A former member of the KU Debate squad, Bajwa has also worked as a debate coach and tutor. Last year he volunteered as an English instructor at the Government High School in Mohlanwal, Pakistan. 

Alex Murray is the son of Craig Murray and Sherrie Murray of Lawrence and is a graduate of Olathe Northwest High School. A double major in finance and environmental studies, Murray has been involved with a number of initiatives focused on interdisciplinary approaches to climate change. A member of the University Honors Program, Murray was selected as a sophomore for the competitive University Scholars Program. Murray has also been involved with the Business Leadership Program, Net Impact and the Student Environmental Advisory Board through Student Senate. He spent a summer studying abroad at Hong Kong University. He is the co-founder and president of the KU Beekeeping Club. He serves on the Student Advisory Board and as a discussion groups coordinator at the Dole Institute of Politics. 

Sam Steuart is the son of Renae and Jim Steuart of Topeka and a graduate of Shawnee Heights High School. A double major in American studies and biochemistry with a minor in Spanish, Steuart is a member of the University Honors Program, was selected as a sophomore for the competitive University Scholars Program and as a junior he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. In April he was named a Truman Scholar. Steuart is the executive director for the Center for Community Outreach, where he previously served as program coordinator and development director. He completed a medical internship in Spain and studied abroad on programs in Costa Rica and England. He has done research since 2017 in the lab of Cindy Berrie, KU associate professor of chemistry, and since 2018 with Vincent Francisco, Kansas Health Foundation Professor of Applied Behavioral Science. Over the summer he completed an internship on School Student Health Clinics at the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.