Four Nominated for Rhodes Scholarships

four students standing in business attire, two females and two males, smiling in professional stances
Alex Dileo, Tony Hanna, Katie Hatstat, and Preston Tunnell Wilson

Rhodes College is pleased to announce four nominees for the 2016 Rhodes Scholarships, the oldest and most celebrated international fellowship awards in the world. They are seniors Alex Dileo, Tony Hanna, Katie Hatstat, and Preston Tunnell Wilson.

The Rhodes Trust, established to honor the will and bequest of Cecil J. Rhodes, provides full financial support for Rhodes Scholars to pursue degrees at the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom in partnership with the Second Century Founder, John McCall MacBain and other generous benefactors. Each year, 32 young Americans are selected as Rhodes Scholars for their outstanding scholarly achievements, character, commitment to others and to the common good, and for their potential for leadership in whatever domains their careers may lead.

“This year’s nominees for the Rhodes Scholarship represent an exciting and diverse array of interests,” says Dr. Judith Haas, co-director of postgraduate fellowships at Rhodes. “They have each maintained a stellar level of academic achievement while actively pursuing commitments to the larger community.”

Alex Dileo, a political science major from Saint Simons Island, GA, serves on the board of Memphis Area Women’s Council, and in 2013 curated a community art exhibit on the objectification of women in advertising. She currently is an intern for Girls Inc. and continues to work with nonprofit organizations in the areas of research, grassroots advocacy, public policy, and fundraising. At Rhodes, she co-founded Culture of Consent, serves on Rhodes Student Government and V-Day, is an RSA in Career Services, and was the 2014 coordinator for the Summer Service Fellowship Program. She plans to pursue graduate work in public policy with a focus on gender-based violence and queer rights.

Tony Hanna has served as a research assistant for Dr. Esen Kirdis of the Department of International Studies analyzing policies and political strategies among Islamic parties in the Mediterranean region. An international studies and political science major from Nashville, TN, he is the student director of Rhodes’ Kinney program. Hanna has been a West TN Intern for the Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition and has worked closely with the Refugee Empowerment Program (REP). In addition, he has developed a college readiness workshop and ACT-prep class for the high school students at REP. He is interested in getting a doctorate in international education and working in education diplomacy in the foreign service.

Katie Hatstat, a chemistry and neuroscience double major from Parker, CO, has conducted research for the chemistry labs of Profs. Larryn Peterson and Mauricio Cafiero. She has won awards for her presentations at national conferences and works as a as a chemistry peer-tutor. In addition to serving as a Rhodes Diplomat and a resident advisor, she plays on the women’s soccer team. She currently is a Goldwater Scholar. Her career goal is to conduct government or industry research focused on drug development and mechanisms of drug action.

Preston Tunnell Wilson, also a Goldwater Scholar, is a mathematics and computer science major from Denton, TX. He has researched with Prof. Betsy Williams on her virtual environment project and has studied abroad in Budapest with a focus on mathematics and computer science. In addition, he is involved in the French, math, and computer science clubs at Rhodes, plays on the men’s tennis team, and works as a computer science peer-tutor. He plans to pursue a Ph.D. in computer science theory, compilers, or programming languages; conduct research; and one day teach at the university level.