Scholar Profiles

Evan Finley

Campus: Duke
Hometown: Houston, TX
High School: Bellaire High School

What drew you to the Robertson Program?

Much of my high school career was spent participating in political activities that I believed had the greatest impact on the greatest number of people. My extracurriculars taught me that an individual, even a high school student with limited resources and connections, could make a world of difference to friends and neighbors in their school, community, and state. The Robertson Program’s commitment to embolden and recognize those who strive for impactful community engagement is unmatched by any other scholarship. During orientation at Robertson Finalist Weekend, I was astounded by my fellow finalists: each one of them had a unique story as to how they made a difference in the lives of others during their short four years of high school. It was then that I not only realized I had found a community I wanted to be a part of, but found a lifelong group of leaders who will strive to make a positive difference in all their endeavors.

How has your experience with the Robertson shaped your goals and career path?

The Robertson Program has played a vital role in shaping how I view leadership in myself and others. From interacting with scholars to learning sage leadership advice from formal programming, the leadership education that the Robertson Program offers is boundless. Understanding what leadership means to me and how I want to be a leader has provided an oar in pursuing my professional life.

What has been your favorite Robertson moment so far?

My favorite Robertson moment is without a doubt sitting around the campfire roasting marshmallows on our freshman orientation NOLS trip. Despite only having met a few days before, the whole cohort was willing to connect and open up to deep conversation almost immediately. This experience helped me realize I had found a community who would not only challenge me intellectually but was also nurturing and genuinely cared.

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