24 October 2006

UQ graduate Ryan Goss’ family will celebrate an 80-year family history tonight.

Mr Goss was announced the 2007 Queensland Rhodes Scholar this afternoon (Tuesday, October 24) at Government House.

His grandfather, Konrad Hirschfeld, began his university studies at UQ and was the Queensland Rhodes Scholar in 1927. Mr Goss is also the son of UQ graduate and former Queensland Premier Wayne Goss.

With a Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Law (both first class honours) and two University of Queensland medals behind him, Mr Goss (of Bowen Hills) is grateful for the opportunity to further his achievements.

For two out of three past summers, he has been doing volunteer work in India.

“I worked for six weeks each time with a non-government organisation, conducting research and doing legal writing. I learnt a great deal about human rights law during this time,” Mr Goss said.

“I’m very grateful for the opportunities the Rhodes Scholarship will provide.

“I plan to study human rights law and hopefully further my experience in this field in the developing world.”

With a Bachelor of Arts majoring in American studies and history, his passion for human rights law has developed with a greater understanding of international politics.

Mr Goss has also been successful in debating and mooting competitions as a student.

He has continued relations with the University since graduation, coaching internationally successful UQ moot teams. He was a coach of the 2006 UQ Philip C Jessup International Law Moot team that represented Australia in Washington DC earlier this year. He also co-edited the UQ Law Society`s satirical Obiter magazine.

After graduating from UQ at the end of 2005, Mr Goss has been working as an Associate to the Hon Justice Patrick Keane of the Queensland Court of Appeal.

He will begin his studies in Oxford in 2007. The selection committee received 20 applications for the scholarship this year. Mr Goss joins five winners from the other states and five from Australia-at-Large.

Background to Rhodes Scholarships

Rhodes Scholarships, founded in 1902 under the will of the late Cecil John Rhodes, are tenable at the University of Oxford for an initial two years, with the possibility of a third. Candidates must be aged between 19 and 25 years and citizens of the country from which they are selected.

Scholarships are assigned annually in Australia, Canada, India, Jamaica, New Zealand, Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa, the United States, Germany, British Caribbean, Malaysia, Singapore, Pakistan, Kenya and Hong Kong.

Australia receives eleven – one for each state and five for Australia-at-large.

Since the scheme began, about 500 Rhodes Scholars have been selected. Women became eligible in 1972.

The first Rhodes Scholarship awarded in Queensland was in 1904 by Arthur Stanley Roe, five years before an Act of Parliament was passed to set up The University of Queensland.

The qualities set out by the late Cecil Rhodes for those seeking Rhodes Scholarships include academic and intellectual excellence, integrity of character, respect for fellow beings and a capacity for leadership. Sporting prowess is an advantage, but not a necessity.

Media: Elizabeth Kerr (0422 940 572, 07 3365 2339)