April 23, 2001
Director of Media Relations

AMHERST, Mass.— Stephen M. Ruckman, a graduating senior at Amherst College, has been awarded a J. William Fulbright Fellowship for postgraduate study overseas. Ruckman, son of Roger and Kathy Ruckman of Chevy Chase, Md., will study the role of ethics in political philosophy in England or Scotland.

“ My central aim … is to thoroughly examine political action in a moral context, ” Ruckman wrote in his Fulbright proposal. “In my first class in political science at Amherst College, I was dismayed by the professor’s assertion that political leadership is only successful when it is amoral. I refused to be bound by Machiavelli. ”

Ruckman plans academic study in ethical philosophy at either the London School of Economics or the University of Edinburgh. He hopes to earn a law degree one day and work in government.

Ruckman, a political science major at Amherst, has been the principal violist with the Amherst College Orchestra and played with the Tsrema string quartet for four years. Active in student politics, Ruckman was elected president of the Student Government Organization in his senior year, and was a member of the Amherst College Diversity Coalition. He is a member of Phi Beta Kappa.

Congress created the Fulbright Program in 1946 to foster mutual understanding among nations through educational and cultural exchanges. Senator J. William Fulbright, sponsor of the legislation, viewed scholarship as an alternative to armed conflict. Today the Fulbright Program, the federal government’s premier scholarship program, funded by an annual Congressional appropriation and contributions from other participating countries, allows Americans to study or conduct research in over 100 nations.