Four Indian American students among 2022 Truman Scholars

Truman Scholarship is the premier graduate scholarship for aspiring public service leaders in the United States

Four Indian American college students have been selected as 2022 Truman Scholars. The Truman Scholarship is the premier graduate scholarship for aspiring public service leaders in the United States.

Avi Gupta, Bhav Jain, Amisha A Kambath and Eshika Kaul, are among 58 exceptional college students from 53 US colleges and universities selected as 2022 Truman Scholars, Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation announced April 14.

Each Truman Scholar receives funding for graduate studies, leadership training, career counseling, and special internship and fellowship opportunities within the federal government.

Read: Seven Indian American among 2017 Truman Scholarship Finalists (March 2, 2017)

Established by Congress in 1975 as the living memorial to the 33rd US President, Harry S. Truman Truman, the scholarship carries his legacy by supporting and inspiring the next generation of public service leaders.

“We have confidence that these 58 new Trumans will meet their generation’s challenges together,” says Dr. Terry Babcock-Lumish, the Foundation’s Executive Secretary and a 1996 Truman Scholar from Pennsylvania.

“As we pay tribute to the Truman Foundation’s president for over twenty years, Secretary Madeleine Albright, it is our responsibility to carry on her work as a tireless champion of democracy, human rights, and public service.

“Selected from across America, the 2022 Truman Scholars reflect our country as innovative, purposeful, patriotic problem-solvers, never shying away from a challenge.”

Avi Gupta from Oregon studies political science and computer science with specializations in American politics and artificial intelligence (AI), at Stanford University.

His background in AI engineering and public policy informs his passion for public service at the intersection of technology and policy. He intends to pursue a JD to harness law as a tool for crafting effective policy.

Gupta envisions a system of common-sense policies that address the harmful impacts of emerging technology while unlocking its transformative potential to build a more equitable, effective, and responsive government.

He is particularly interested in combating political polarization by reexamining the role of social media algorithms in promoting misinformation. Gupta enjoys playing basketball, exploring new cuisines, and walking Zaylie, the family labradoodle.

Bhav Jain from Pennsylvania studies at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Jain is interested in global health care delivery and transforming clinical care as a future physician-policymaker.

His research spans oncology delivery, health disparities, and health systems transformation, and has been published in outlets such as Nature Medicine, American Journal of Public Health, Journal of Clinical Oncology, Annals of Surgical Oncology, and American Journal of Managed Care.

Additionally, he engages with undergraduate students and physicians across 20 states through his nonprofit organization, The Connected Foundation, which forges intergenerational connections between youth and seniors, and partners with health care systems to support seniors transitioning from inpatient or clinical to home-based care.

Amisha A Kambath of California studies social studies and economics at Harvard University. Committed to a life motivated by justice, she is interested in the criminal legal system writ large, with a particular focus on the intersecting threads of economic opportunity, violence, urban economic development, policing, and alternatives to incarceration.

Her background in various academic disciplines to interrogate these threads – through sociology, economics, history, political theory, and literature – motivate her belief in the necessity of a multi-pronged and interdisciplinary approach to addressing issues such as the persistence of violence and economic marginality in high-crime neighborhoods.

She intends to pursue a JD/PhD to study the architecture of the criminal legal system and examine alternate models of economic policy to challenge existing paradigms of economic development.

Kambath also loves spending time outdoors on walks or playing basketball, and listening to and reading about music analysis.

Eshika Kaul from New Jersey is a student at Wellesley College. She studies economics and peace and justice, weaving together economic theory and conflict transformation practices to understand ways to create sustainable institutional change.

Her passion for harnessing the power of grassroots activism and coalition building to advocate for change stemmed from her successes founding programs to support mental health and diversity initiatives in her hometown.

At Wellesley, Kaul is a leader in civic engagement, expanding service opportunities for students by establishing partnerships with local nonprofits.

She works alongside lawyers, accountants, and law students at the Harvard Legal Services Center Federal Tax Clinic to advocate for low-income taxpayers with IRS controversies.

Kaul has personally leveraged her tax certification to secure tens of thousands of dollars in benefits for under-resourced clients, including formerly incarcerated individuals and survivors of interpersonal violence.

Read: Four students with Indian-origin in America selected for Truman Scholarship (April 22, 2022)

Interested in rooting her activism in data-driven principles, she has presented her research on the long-term impact of childhood trauma and is currently analyzing the obstacles faced by marginalized communities through a microeconomic lens.

Kaul believes that targeted financial support is one of the most fundamental mechanisms by which women and families can empower themselves. She plans on pursuing a JD with the intent of challenging systemic injustices as a lawyer, community organizer, and public servant.

Selected from 705 candidates nominated by 275 colleges and universities, the 58 awardees join a community of 3,442 Truman Scholars named since the first awards in 1977.

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