UF student awarded prestigious Rhodes Scholarship

Aimee Cles stands in front of a wall of jasmine flowers while wearing a blue blouse

Amiee Clesi is UF’s first Rhodes Scholar since 2000, and she is the first woman from UF to receive the honor. A first-generation college student, Clesi is a member of the UF Honors Program.

University of Florida senior Aimee Clesi has been chosen as a Rhodes Scholar. 

The philosophy and history double major will pursue a doctorate of philosophy at the University of Oxford and focus her research on wrongful conviction and the execution of innocent persons. 

She is UF’s first Rhodes Scholar since 2000, and she is the first woman from UF to receive the honor. A first-generation college student, Clesi is a member of the UF Honors Program.

Her honors thesis focuses on racial disparities in death penalty sentencing in the U.S. She has pursued multiple legal internships, including with the Office of the Federal Public Defender for the Northern District of Florida and the American Bar Association Death Penalty Representation Project. 

Rhodes Scholarships provide all expenses for two or three years of study at Oxford—ranked the No. 1 university in the world in some global rankings. She will be UF's 13th Rhodes Scholar. Clesi is one of 32 students chosen for the prestigious award out of 2,300 applicants around the country. 

"We are confident that their contributions to public welfare nationally and globally will expand exponentially over the course of their careers in varied sectors and disciplines," said Elliot F. Gerson, American Secretary of the Rhodes Trust.

For more information about the Rhodes Scholarship and this year's awardees, please visit the Rhodes Trust website.

Emily Cardinali November 23, 2021