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The College Fix investigates: Truman Scholarships

Without fail every single year the vast majority of those selected for the award lean left

The prestigious, federally funded Truman Scholarships are supposed to be handed out in a nonpartisan manner. They are decidedly not.

In 2015, The College Fix began an ambitious annual project to determine the political and ideological bent of the winners of the $30,000 grants, using a combination of the winners’ official biographies, self-reported work histories on LinkedIn, and social media profiles and posts.

Nearly a decade spent tracking the political makeup of Truman award winners yields similar results year after year – liberal activism is awarded.

Self-identified conservatives are almost completely shut out of the awards. Only a smattering of center-right students are awarded the grants. Without fail every single year the vast majority of those selected for the award lean left.

Of the 599 awards doled out since 2015 — only 26 winners leaned right. In contrast, 354 awardees were involved in left-leaning causes. The rest, 219, could not be ascertained based on their public-facing bios.

With that, of the 380 winners with known political affiliations since 2015 — 93 percent of them are left-leaning students who were given the grants.

The prestigious Truman Scholarship is granted to college juniors to help them attend graduate school. The award is supposed to be nonpartisan, and recipients must pledge to serve three of their first seven years after graduation in public service.

Truman scholar officials have argued over the years that they simply select candidates based on the pools sent to them by universities, and that left-leaning students are naturally more drawn to public service.

Review The College Fix’s tally of results here.

View The College Fix’s past articles here:

Truman Scholarships overwhelmingly awarded to progressive students for tenth year in row


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