Congressional awards recognize five NU students for three scholarships


Daily file photo by Catherine Buchaniec

Northwestern students were recognized by Congress as they pursue careers in fields including public service and environmental policy.

Jessica Ma, Assistant Campus Editor

Congress honored five Northwestern undergraduates with scholarships for their dedication to public service, scientific research and environmental and Indigenous advocacy, NU announced Thursday.

Every year, Congress funds three scholarships in honor of former President Harry Truman, former Sen. Barry Goldwater and former Reps. Morris and Stewart Udall.

Congress named Weinberg senior Irena Petryk a Truman Scholar. Petryk, who is also a Rhodes Scholar, will receive $30,000 for her graduate-level studies. Last summer, she worked at the U.S. State Department. 

Petryk plans to obtain a master’s degree in international relations from the University of Oxford, along with a U.S. law degree. She hopes to eventually work in the Office of the Legal Adviser at the State Department, according to the NU news release.

Weinberg juniors Levi Hoogendoorn, Kaitlyn Hung and Carol Magalhaes received Barry Goldwater Scholarships, which aim to support careers in the natural sciences, mathematics and engineering. Goldwater Scholars can collect up to $7,500 every academic year.

“As the campus representative, I enjoyed guiding them through the process. All three should have great success in their future careers,” LaTanya Veronica Williams, associate director for STEM in the Office of Fellowships, said in the release. 

Weinberg junior Eve Downing received the $7,000 Udall Scholarship in recognition of her leadership and service on environmental issues.

After graduation, Downing said she plans to work in environmental policy. Downing, who grew up in Alaska, said she sees how climate change directly impacts her community. She hopes to contribute to an “equitable transition to clean energy in Alaska and the Arctic,” according to the release. 

This is the second consecutive year in which Northwestern students received all three scholarships.

“This back-to-back sweep speaks not only to our individual scholars’ outstanding impact in their chosen domains, but also to Northwestern’s cultivation of leaders able to confront the wide variety of challenges facing our world,” said Elizabeth Lewis Pardoe, director of the Office of Fellowships.

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Twitter: @JessicaMa2025

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