2010 Queensland Rhodes Scholar Jessica Howley
2010 Queensland Rhodes Scholar Jessica Howley
20 October 2009

International law is where UQ graduate and 2010 Queensland Rhodes Scholar Jessica Howley's academic interests lie.

Queensland Governor Penelope Wensley, AO, made the announcement at Government House this afternoon, following interviews with six shortlisted candidates.

"I hope to be able to promote the substantive development of international law, whether that be through academia, through representing Australia in international bodies or through international practice," Ms Howley said.

After graduating with first-class Honours in 2008, Ms Howley undertook a 12-month associateship with Justice Susan Kiefel in the High Court of Australia.

The 24-year-old from Paddington plans to further develop her expertise in the field of international law by studying a Bachelor of Civil Law and Master of Philosophy at the University of Oxford.

"Im interested in studying international law with a focus on jurisprudence, so how the international legal system can be developed to become more effective," Ms Howley said.

"I think Oxford is the ideal institution to study what I want to study.

"In addition to that it offers an extracurricular program which I think is exceptional so I'm hoping to become involved in that."

Ms Howley said completing a double major in international relations, as well as being part of UQ's 2007 Philip C Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition team, prompted her passion for international law.

Having previously been President of the United Nations Youth Association in Queensland and currently working with UNIFEM Australia (the United Nations Development Fund for Women), she is no stranger to using her knowledge to help others.

Ms Howley was awarded the 2008 University Medal for law, which was presented midway through 2009.

Beyond academia Ms Howley's interests include debating and netball, which she hopes to continue at Oxford.

This year the selection committee received 27 applications for the scholarship.

Ms Howley is the 9th consecutive Queensland Rhodes Scholar from UQ, and will join five state-based winners and another three from Australia-at-large.

Eight of the past nine Queensland Rhodes Scholars are graduates of UQ's TC Beirne School of Law.

Before heading to Oxford in September, Ms Howley will take up a graduate position at the Brisbane office of Mallesons Stephen Jaques, a leading international commercial law firm.

Media: Penny Robinson at UQ Communications (07 3365 9723, penny.robinson@uq.edu.au)

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.

Since the scheme began, more than 500 Australian 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.