By Elise Harmon, news editor

Senior civil engineering student Logan Jackson is the first in Northeastern University’s history to be named a Rhodes Scholar.

Recipients of Rhodes Scholarships, which were first awarded to American students in 1904, have all expenses paid for two to three years of study at the University of Oxford in England. Jackson was one of 32 American undergraduates to be awarded the annual scholarship. According to a statement by the Rhodes Trust, this year, 869 students were endorsed by 316 different colleges and universities for the award.

Jackson is the former president of the Black Engineering Student Society and a violist in the Northeastern University Symphony Orchestra.

Currently on co-op at Hensel Phelps in Maryland, Jackson talked to The News about the application process for the prestigious award.

The Huntington News: How does it feel to be the first Northeastern student to be a Rhodes Scholar?

Logan Jackson: It’s pretty exciting. It took a little getting used to the news  – going from just an interview to being named in all the media was kind of alarming, but definitely exciting.

HN: What was the application process like?

LJ: It’s long, but the turnout is actually kind of short. It’s a 1,000 word personal statement, five to eight letters of recommendation and a two page activities list. That’s what you turn in online to a website. The personal statement should talk about your aspirations and why you want to be a Rhodes Scholar  – what you would study at Oxford. The other two pages are basically what you’ve done in your time as a college student.

HN: When did you find out that you were chosen as a Rhodes scholar?

LJ: The Saturday before Thanksgiving, the 14 finalists had 20-minute interviews. And then we all sat together while they deliberated and they came back and told us who the winners were.

HN: How did you react?

LJ: It was kind of shocking in the moment. It was a little weird just because everyone was still there. It was just kind of an awkward situation because then we had to go get paperwork and stuff, but everyone was really excited. My parents and my sisters were all really excited.

HN: What are you planning to study at Oxford?

LJ: Nothing in stone yet, but I think I want to do two one-year master’s degree programs. They like it if you stay for two years at Oxford, but there are a lot of different combinations of what you could do for that. I think for the first year I want to do a Master of Science in evidence-based social intervention and policy evaluation. I’m still deciding, but [for my second degree] I’m thinking maybe a master’s in public policy or another course in their Department of Education.

HN: What are you interested in doing in the future, after Oxford?

LJ: I’m not sure yet. I do want to eventually have some sort of role as an advisor or policy-maker. There are a lot of things that are popping up. In the American Association for the Advancement of Science, they hire these fellows that are scientists but also policymakers to kind of advice, so that would be something that I would be interested in doing.

Photo courtesy Logan Jackson