Rice University senior Isabel Scher is among the 111 students chosen for the inaugural class of Schwarzman Scholars. She will receive a fully funded scholarship for postgraduate study at the new Schwarzman College at Tsinghua University in Beijing.
The Schwarzman Scholars program is designed to prepare its graduates to build stronger relationships between China and the rapidly changing world and to address the most pressing challenges of the 21st century. The scholars were chosen on the basis of intellectual capacity and leadership potential from more than 3,000 applicants.
Scher, from Tenafly, N.J., will pursue a master’s degree in economics and business at Tsinghua after she completes her Bachelor of Arts degree in political science at Rice in May.
“My experience as a Schwarzman Scholar will enhance my understanding of China’s political and business environment to effectively consult with multinational companies in today’s interconnected global economy,” Scher said. Noting that she is “tremendously excited” to be among the first Schwarzman Scholars, Scher said she is “most looking forward to deepening my understanding of China’s political environment and building lasting relationships with my fellow scholars.”
She plans to work with McKinsey & Company as a business analyst after she completes her studies through the Schwarzman Scholars program.
Scher is working on a certificate in civic leadership from Rice. For her capstone project at the university’s Center for Civic Leadership, Scher is collaborating with the Enable Community Foundation to design and execute a model for evaluating the functionality of 3-D printed prosthetic hands for children. The feedback tool will be used to inform the expectations of future hand recipients and modify the designs of prosthetic hands that are currently available.
Scher’s years at Rice have included a variety of opportunities to develop her leadership skills and education. She spent a semester at the Danish Institute for Study Abroad in Copenhagen. She worked as an intern in Rice’s Office of Alumni and Development, where she assisted with development and marketing of the externship program. She co-founded Rice Launch, a student-led organization rooted in the values of awareness, education and collaboration with the goal of connecting, energizing and enabling Rice students to initiate and pursue their own entrepreneurial ventures. She has also served internships at Macmillan New Ventures and Accenture.
“It is a great honor for a Rice student to be selected for the inaugural class of Schwarzman Scholars,” said Caroline Quenemoen, executive director of Rice’s Center for Civic Leadership. “Isabel’s contributions to the establishment of the Owledge externship program and her Center for Civic Leadership capstone project reveal that she has the vision and tenacity to exercise leadership as an entrepreneur in today’s global economy.”