Media contact: Noelle Lemoine, communications assistant; tele: (413) 597-4277; email: [email protected]
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass., April 13, 2017— Williams College junior Anna DeLoi has been awarded the Harry S. Truman Scholarship, a prestigious award given to college juniors demonstrating exceptional leadership potential who are committed to careers in public service.
DeLoi plans to pursue a joint degree through the Stanford Graduate School of Education’s Master of Arts/Master of Public Policy (MA/MPP) program to prepare for running a community music education organization in an under-resourced, rural community.
DeLoi is one of 62 recipients chosen from an applicant pool of 768 from 315 colleges and universities. Truman Scholars receive up to $30,000 in support for graduate study, in addition to leadership training, graduate school and career counseling, and access to special internship opportunities within the federal government.
A native of Plaistow, N.H., DeLoi plans to develop an independent, community arts center supported by a non-profit that she would also create. Her plan is to eventually have a network of community arts centers in rural communities supported by the non-profit.
“I’m so grateful for the support of the Truman Foundation in continuing to pursue the work I’m passionate about,” DeLoi said. “I couldn’t have gotten here without the guidance of many professors and mentors, both at Williams and at home, and my incredible family.”
At Williams, DeLoi has developed a keen interest in the power of music education in rural communities. She is the founder and director of Ephs Out Loud Community Arts Initiative. Ephs Out Loud (EOL) engages Williams students, faculty, staff and community members around the shared experience of music. EOL gives performances and workshops at community venues, provides private lessons, chamber music coaching, and jazz instruction at local schools affected by arts budget cuts. EOL also organizes large-scale concerts to promote collaboration with diverse community groups. Additionally, DeLoi is the student principal harpist with the Berkshire Symphony Orchestra, co-chair of the Students for Education Reform at Williams College, and has served as an orientation leader for the freshman orientation program.
Additionally, during spring break of her first year at Williams, DeLoi worked with an organization called From the Top to develop and implement a weeklong arts leadership program in rural Appalachia. While there, she coached middle school band students on telling personal stories through music, organized a radio show celebrating local music students and hosted a seminar about harnessing the arts to revitalize the struggling town of Hazard, Ky.
A music and psychology double major, DeLoi has worked as a student stage manager for the Williams Department of Music, a teaching assistant with the Berkshire Symphony, a music intern at Greylock Elementary School and as a teaching artist with the Berkshire Children and Families program, Kids 4 Harmony.
“Anna’s greatest passion lies in community building and service,” said Katya King, Williams’ director of fellowships. “She has an impressive record of engagement with music outreach in rural communities. We see her as someone poised to enact meaningful change in this much neglected field.”
Congress created the Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation in 1975 to be the nation’s living memorial to President Harry S. Truman. The Foundation has a mission to select and support the next generation of public service leaders. The Truman award has become one of the most prestigious national scholarships in the United States.
DeLoi is the 18th Truman Scholar from Williams College. Recent past winners of the scholarship include Brian McGrail ’14, Newton Davis ’12, and William Lee ’11. She will receive her award at a ceremony May 28 at the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum.
Founded in 1793, Williams College is the second-oldest institution of higher learning in Massachusetts. The college’s 2,000 students are taught by a faculty noted for the quality of their teaching and research, and the achievement of academic goals includes active participation of students with faculty in their research. Students’ educational experience is enriched by the residential campus environment in Williamstown, Mass., which provides a host of opportunities for interaction with one another and with faculty beyond the classroom. Admission decisions on U.S. applicants are made regardless of a student’s financial ability, and the college provides grants and other assistance to meet the demonstrated needs of all who are admitted.