On Saturday, November 30, Ariel Zylberman heard the wonderful news that he was the University of Winnipeg’s latest recipient of the prestigious Rhodes Scholarship, the second UWinnipeg student to receive this honour in two years.
Recipients of the Rhodes Scholarship – six from UWinnipeg in the past ten years – go on to study at Oxford University in England upon completion of their undergraduate degrees.
“We are dazzled by this young man,” says Constance Rooke, president of the University of Winnipeg. “He reminds us all of the pleasure inherent in education-the way a mind can catch fire with an idea, and the whole being can exult with a discovery.”
Originally from Argentina, Ariel plans to pursue a Bachelor of Philosophy (the designation for Oxford’s master’s degree) at Oxford University this fall, where he will continue to study the history of philosophy.
Throughout his studies Ariel has maintained an exceptional academic record, winning numerous awards and scholarships, including the University of Winnipeg’s most prestigious award, the Sir William Stephenson Scholarship.
Despite the hard work and effort required to maintain such high academic standards, Ariel has always made time to contribute to the University community. Throughout his studies Ariel has worked as an ESL tutor, Spanish tutor, teaching assistant for the Philosophy department, and volunteer discussion leader in the International Centre. He has also brought out the best of others in his work as editor of the Western Undergraduate Journal of Philosophy and in his founding and organizing of the current Philosophy Department lunch-hour seminars.
“Ariel is an outstanding scholar,” says Brian Keenan, Chair of UWinnipeg’s Philosophy Department. “In over 25 years of teaching he has been one of my best students and among the finest young people I’ve ever met. What is truly remarkable, however, is his commitment to the community and the larger world.”
Ariel is active in a variety of outreach and sporting activities. In addition to volunteering with Jewish Child and Family Services as a Big Brother, he is also been an avid water-polo player and dances with the Sarah Sommer Chai Folk Ensemble, which has toured Israel in addition to local performances at events such as Folklorama.
Rhodes Scholarships are awarded annually throughout the Commonwealth, in the United States, and Europe. Only three such scholarships are allotted to the prairie region of Canada, which includes Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba.
Students from UWinnipeg, home to approximately 4% of the Western Region student population, have received 6 out of the 30 Rhodes Scholarships allotted to the prairies in the past ten years. Overall, the University of Winnipeg family of alumni has 30 Rhodes Scholars within its distinguished membership.
The Scholarship covers all the academic and related fees at Oxford while providing an annual allowance, currently about $17,000 CDN, for living expenses. While the Rhodes Scholarship typically provides for two years of study, it can be renewed for a third.
The Rhodes Scholarship was established in 1903 by Cecil Rhodes and has acquired an international reputation for the emphasis it places on both academic achievement and the potential for leadership across a wide variety of areas. In his will, Rhodes stipulated that recipients of the scholarships must have, “Proven intellectual abilities, integrity of character, physical vigour, interest in and respect for their fellow beings, the ability to lead, and the energy to use their talents to the full.”
UWinnipeg’s recent Rhodes Scholarship recipients include:
· Ariel Zylberman ’02 (philosophy)
· Karlee Silver ’01 (biochemistry)
· David Selchen ’97 (biology/psychology)
· Mark Matz ’96 (classics)
· Claudia Hudspeth ’93 (biology)
· Arash Abizadeh ’92 (political science/economics)
For further information, please contact:
Katherine Unruh, Director of Communications
The University of Winnipeg