UIC junior awarded Truman Scholarship

Cristian Nuno

Cristian Nuno, a junior in the UIC Honors College. Photo: Roberta Dupuis-Devlin (click for larger image)

Cristian Nuno, a junior in the Honors College at the University of Illinois at Chicago, has been named a Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation scholar for 2015. He will receive $30,000 for graduate school.

The foundation awards the highly competitive scholarships to exceptional college students planning to attend graduate school in preparation for careers in government or public service.

Nuno, who is dual-majoring in economics and urban and public affairs, is one of 58 Truman Scholars selected nationwide. Scholars also receive leadership training, career and graduate school counseling and special internship opportunities within the federal government.

He plans to pursue a master’s degree in public policy in preparation for a career focused on municipal finance and urban policy.

Inspired by researching public-private partnerships, Nuno enjoys the challenge of analyzing complicated municipal finance information. He hopes to help government leaders make well-informed public policy decisions while also making the information easier for the general public to understand.

“My biggest passion is taking something that people don’t care about and making it relevant,” said Nuno, a resident of Glen Ellyn, Illinois.

A 2012 graduate of Glenbard South High School, Nuno is a first-generation college student who was admitted to UIC as part of the inaugural class of the President’s Award Program Honors Scholarship, UIC’s most prestigious four-year tuition and housing scholarship given to exemplary incoming first-year Honors College students.

UIC research and leadership programs, such as the Summer Research Opportunities Program, the Urban Public Policy Fellowship, and the Graduate Pathways to Success Program, were valuable preparation for the rigorous Truman selection process, Nuno said.

“UIC lets you be great at whatever you want to be great at. We have students that feel comfortable enough to learn whatever they want to learn,” he said. “Thanks to my time at UIC, I am excited to be a social scientist.”

As the third UIC student to earn the prestigious scholarship since 1993, he hopes his selection will inspire other UIC students.

“The resources we do have can take students anywhere they want to go,” he said. “It doesn’t matter where you go to school. It’s what you do with where-you-are.”

This year’s scholars were selected from among 688 candidates nominated by 297 colleges and universities. They were chosen in a multi-stage process that concluded with regional interviews by 16 independent selection panels.

The scholars will gather May 19 for a leadership development program at William Jewell College in Liberty, Missouri. They will receive their awards in a special ceremony May 24 at the Truman Library in Independence, Missouri.

Created by Congress in 1975, The Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation serves as the federal memorial to the 33rd U.S. president. The foundation’s mission is to select and support the next generation of public service leaders.