Andrew Lubash is first UO student to get award since 1992

by: SUBMITTED PHOTO - Andrew Lubash of Beaverton earned the prestigious Truman Scholarship, making him the first University of Oregon student to get the award since 1992 and eighth ever.When Andrew Lubash of Beaverton found out he’d become a Truman Scholar on Monday, he was in economics class at the University of Oregon. Two days earlier than he was expecting, the university president, dean of students, administrators who helped him through the process, professors, and numerous other faculty surprised Lubash with the life-altering news.

“The best way to describe how I felt is to compare it to when I’m running a race,” said Lubash. “You can’t really feel what’s going on around you because it’s going so fast, but you’re moving in slow motion.”

So, in front of a class of 150 students, the Southridge High School graduate learned he was a recipient of the $30,000 scholarship, which he intends to use for graduate school at Georgetown Law.

The Truman Scholarship program is a memorial to the late president Harry S. Truman. Its purpose is to develop new generations of public service leaders and “change agents,” who will help shape public policy in the future.

The first UO student to earn the award since 1992, and only the eighth ever, Lubash is a double major in economics and political science with a 3.95 GPA in the Clark Honors College. Since his freshman year, he’s been involved with the Student Senate and is currently running for another seat.

“Andrew is an outstanding student, and he’s exceptional in his commitment to community service and activism, so he's an excellent person for this award,” said Dan Tichenor, a Philip H. Knight professor of social science and senior faculty fellow at the Wayne Morse Center for Law and Politics.

Even with his accomplishments, Lubash felt the award was beyond his reach. For a year, he worked on his application, which ended up being about 15 pages long. When he finally submitted it in February, winning still didn’t seem possible.

“I never felt that someone like me would ever win such a prestigious award, especially when it felt like I had only heard about it on a whim and applied just to give it a shot,” Lubash said. “The money will certainly ease the burden of graduate school and student loans, but more than that are the amazing people that I will meet along the way, and the leadership and intellectual development I’ll receive.”

Lubash hopes to pursue a career in civil rights at the state or national level, possibly as a policy advocate or government relations lawyer.

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