A Coeur d'Alene native has been named a Truman Scholar, reports Willamette University in Salem, Ore.
Mariah Grubb, the daughter of Peter Grubb and Betsy Bowen, owners of ROW Adventures in Coeur d'Alene, learned she had earned the honor while sitting in an anthropology class, when the university's president and other administrators showed up with balloons and chocolates.
"I was in utter shock," Grubb said, in a press release. "I couldn't believe I was picked. It was mind blowing."
Grubb was one of about 60 college juniors from across the country to earn the award, which provides up to $30,000 for graduate school. The honor is bestowed to students who plan to pursue careers in government, policy, public health and related fields.
Along with the aid, Truman Scholars participate in leadership development programs and are granted opportunities for internships and employment with the federal government.
Grubb attended Franklin College in Lugano, Switzerland, and taught English for three months in a village in Nepal. She has six years of experience as a whitewater rafting guide for ROW Adventures, and she is certified as a wilderness first responder.
She studies anthropology and psychology at Willamette University, and plans on getting a graduate degree in International Sustainable Development.
For the past five years, she has worked as a wilderness adventure guide, advocating for dam removal, conserving salmon populations and protecting wilderness through a variety of organizations including Idaho Rivers United. She also works with a program aimed at reducing recidivism rates by mentoring recently released felons, supporting them as they rebuild their lives.
This summer, she will live in a rural village in Rwanda, learning about social entrepreneurship and assisting the community in the development of sustainable solutions to pressing environmental, health and economic problems.