An online journal which chronicles the people, places, trends, and events
in our unique corner of the Virginia countryside.

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The Ultimate Middleburg Social Calendar

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Rhodes Scholarships provide all expenses for two or three years of study at the University of Oxford in England, and may allow funding in some instances for four years. Elliot F. Gerson, American Secretary of the Rhodes Trust called the Rhodes Scholarships, "the oldest and best known award for international study, and arguably the most famous academic award available to American college graduates." They were created in 1902 by the Will of Cecil Rhodes, British philanthropist and African colonial pioneer. The first class of American Rhodes Scholars entered Oxford in 1904; those elected today will enter Oxford in October 2009.

Rhodes Scholars are chosen in a two-stage process. First, candidates must be endorsed by their college or university. Over 1500 students each year seek their institution's endorsement; this year, 769 were endorsed by 207 different colleges and universities.

Committees of Selection in each of 16 districts then invite the strongest applicants to appear before them for interview. Gerson said, "applicants are chosen on the basis of the criteria set down in the Will of Cecil Rhodes. These criteria are high academic achievement, integrity of character, a spirit of unselfishness, respect for others, potential for leadership, and physical vigor. These basic characteristics are directed at fulfilling Mr. Rhodes's hopes that the Rhodes Scholars would make an effective and positive contribution throughout the world. In Rhodes' words, his Scholars should 'esteem the performance of public duties as their highest aim.'"

Applicants may apply either through the state where they are legally resident or where they have attended college for at least two years. The district committees met separately, on Friday and Saturday, November 21 and 22, in cities across the country. Each district committee made a final selection of two Rhodes Scholars from the candidates of the state or states within the district. Two-hundred nine applicants from 107 different colleges and universities reached the final stage of the competition, including a record 16 that had never before had a student win a Rhodes Scholarship. Gerson also reported, "in most years, we elect a winner from a college that had never before had a Rhodes Scholar.

This year we are pleased to announce a first-time winner from Augsburg College in Minneapolis, Minnesota." In addition, Gerson reported that, "Rhodes Scholars were also selected on Saturday from
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The Blue Ridge Hunt met Dec. 20 at Merry Carol and Herb Jonkers' Woodley Farm south of Berryville for a special presentation. Prior to the hunt moving off, Blue Ridge Hospice received a check for $23,000 representing proceeds of the Blue Ridge Fall Races held last fall at Woodley Farm. This was the second year for this annual race meet hosted by the Blue Ridge Hunt to benefit the patient care services of Blue Ridge Hospice. Pictured from left are hunt joint master Anne McIntosh, races co-chair Melanie Marks, Herb Jonkers, joint master Linda Armbrust, races co-chair Michael Hoffman hospice CEO Ernie Carnevale, and Merry Carol Jonkers. Next year's race meet is scheduled for Sept. 19 at Woodley.


  The United States Equestrian Federation in Lexington, Kentucky bestowed their Pegasus Awards for media excellence on an array of talented journalists, photographers and publications at their annual meeting in Cincinnati on Saturday, January 17, 2009.

This year, Middleburg's own The Chronicle of the Horse was honored in two catagories. First, the Single Article award was awarded to journalist Sara Lieser for her thought-provoking article, "Defining Dangerous Riding Is No Simple Matter," which addresses the important topic of defining and preventing dangerous riding in three-
day eventing. According to Brian Sosby of the USEF, the author's approach to the topic was thorough and direct, and the topic was met with an adept sense of balance and skillful journalistic writing.

The second honor for The Chronicle was in the photography competition for an image by photographer Kat Netzler. Originally appearing in The Chronicle of the Horse, the shot named "Kate Aldrich
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