Bryan Station High School graduate wins prestigious Rhodes Scholarship

Via LINDA B. BLACKFORD of the Lexington Herald-Leader

A Bryan Station High School graduate has been chosen as one of 32 Rhodes Scholars from throughout the United States. Logan C. Jackson, a senior at Northeastern University in Boston, will pursue post-graduate studies at Oxford University next fall.

Jackson, the daughter of Tonya and Jamie Jackson of Lexington, was one of three valedictorians of Bryan Station High School — as was her twin sister, Cameron — in 2011. A civil engineering major, Logan Jackson is president of Northeastern’s chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers, and a violist in her university’s symphony orchestra.

Jackson also has worked in community services relating to refugees in Kentucky, low-income housing and employment, tutoring and mentoring.

“I was pretty surprised. It’s kind of shocking, but I was happy,” Jackson, 22, said in a phone interview Sunday evening. “Obviously I’m excited.”

Jackson said she plans to work on two one-year master’s degrees — one in evidence-based social intervention and policy and one in education — because she’s interested in higher education policy. 

“I’m interested in increasing the number of diverse people in STEM fields,” she said. Jackson is the only black woman in her five-year civil engineering class at Northeastern. Last year, she said, only 878 black women received engineering degrees across the country.

“There just aren’t that many of us in school or industry,” she said.

Jackson is the first Rhodes Scholar from Northeastern University. She’s also the first in recent memory from Bryan Station, where she was part of the Spanish Immersion Program, said counselor Ann Hurt.

“She was so motivated, she was an outstanding student, she took all really top-notch classes,” Hurt said. “She was a good example to her classmates. The one thing I do want to say is that I am not surprised.”

Jackson applied through District 9, which includes Kentucky, Indiana and Virginia. She was one of 14 finalists for interviews in Indianapolis held the last week in October.

The winners were chosen from 869 applicants who were endorsed by 316 colleges and universities. The scholarships cover all expenses for two or three years of study at Oxford University starting in October.

The Rhodes Scholarships were established by Cecil Rhodes, a British industrialist who lived in South Africa and later founded Rhodesia, the region in Southern Africa now named Zimbabwe. The first American Rhodes Scholars entered Oxford in 1904.

The most recent Rhodes Scholar from Lexington was Dunbar High School graduate Victor Yang, who won the honor in 2011.