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Tulane law alumnus named Schwarzman Scholar

December 04, 2017 12:30 PM


Roger Dunaway

Tulane Law alumnus Hugo Wood is one of 142 men and women selected to the prestigious Schwarzman Scholars Class of 2019. (Photo courtesy of Hugo Wood)


Tulane University alumnus Hugo Wood is the recipient of a Schwarzman Scholarship for graduate study at Tsinghua University in Beijing, one of China’s premier institutions. Wood, who received his LLM in Law and Development from the Tulane Law School in 2014 with help from the Tulane Alumni Association of Panama Scholarship, was one of 142 men and women selected to the Schwarzman Scholars Class of 2019.

More than 4,000 candidates from around the world competed for a spot in the Schwarzman Scholarships’ third class. The Class of 2019 is comprised of students from 39 countries and 97 universities with 41 percent from the United States, 20 percent from China, and 39 percent from the rest of the world. The Class of 2019 will enroll at Schwarzman College on the Tsinghua University campus in August 2018.

The scholars were selected through a rigorous and thorough process designed to evaluate leadership experience and potential, intellectual and academic ability, and the capacity to understand emerging trends, design solutions and inspire others. Applicants were also judged on strength of character. 

“We are very pleased that our first scholarship candidate has done so well professionally working for the Ministry of Foreign Relations and has now been awarded Schwarzman Scholarship," said Stanley Motta, a member of the Tulane Alumni Scholarship Committee of Panama. "It’s a great achievement on his part.”

Wood, 27, is a lawyer, social entrepreneur and human development advocate who serves as Public Policy Advisor and Chief Speechwriter to the Vice-President and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Panama. He also coordinates the largest student debate tournament in the history of his home country of Panama.

Wood graduated magna cum laude of law and political science from Santa Maria La Antigua University where he was the founder of the United Youth for Dialogue, the university's largest student organization.

During his time at Tulane, he was elected president of the postgraduate student government and served as a research assistant for analysis, translation and online research of laws and policies related with the law and international development for Professor Colin Crawford.

Passionate about education and policy implementation, Wood was awarded a scholarship by the Panamanian Government to study modern trends of international development at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government. Based on the recent diplomatic relations between Panama and China, Wood’s ambition is to connect Panama and Latin America with the Asian economic powerhouse and foster human development, inclusion and economic growth.