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Department ofPolitical Science


Huda Navaid

Huda Navaid

Huda Navaid: Truman Scholarship Finalist

Junior political science major Huda Navaid has been selected as a finalist for a 2018 Harry S. Truman Scholarship, a highly competitive federal scholarship for students who have demonstrated leadership potential and a commitment to public service.  Scholars are awarded $30,000 for graduate studies as well as leadership training opportunities.  Navaid hopes to pursue a master’s degree in conflict resolution studies and a Ph.D. in global health sciences.

“I am passionate about expanding mental healthcare access for minorities in the US and for underserved communities globally,” said Navaid.

Navaid is a first generation South Asian American Muslim.  She was born in Pakistan and grew up living all over the United States.  She is a member of the University Honors Program, Political Science Honors Program (Pi Sigma Alpha), and Alpha Sigma Nu (national Jesuit honor society). At SCU, she founded The Clara Current: SCU's first current events publication. She also serves as a volunteer Emergency Medical Technician for SCU EMS. She is the co-president of the SCU Model United Nations team; co-captain of the SCU Debate team, and a peer educator in the Political Science Department. 

Navaid currently works as a leukemia research assistant at UCSF where she studies the genes to identify the role of certain response elements in drug-resistant leukemia.  This summer, she will be in India as a Global Social Benefit Fellow with the Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship, working with the social enterprise, Pollinate Energy.

Navaid said she is grateful for the support of many amazing College of Arts and Sciences faculty members, who have challenged her in the classroom, supported her Truman Scholarship application, and offered her words of advice and encouragement.  She noted Dr. Lawrence Nelson’s Ethics of Healthcare class as “the most formative class I’ve taken while at SCU” and one that allowed her “to empathize more with the perspective of others”

“Huda has a brilliant mind, but it’s her heart that sparkles,” said Leilani Miller, professor of biology, director of the SCU Honors Program and Navaid’s mentor throughout the Truman Scholarship process and her academic career. “Huda is truly devoted to making the world a better place for those less privileged.”

In addition to her keen interest in public affairs and public policy, Navaid, who minors in creative writing and theatre, enjoys composing music and writing poetry and stories.  She hopes to release her first extended play and publish her first book sometime in the next two years. 

Truman Scholarship winners will be announced on their website on April 18.