History Senior Alice McGuinness Wins Sachs Scholarship

Written by
Emily Aronson, Office of Communications, Princeton University
Feb. 16, 2024

Princeton seniors Alice McGuinness and Nathalie Verlinde and University of Oxford student Jack Nunn have been named recipients of the Daniel M. Sachs Class of 1960 Graduating Scholarship, one of Princeton University’s highest awards.

McGuinness has been named as the Sachs Scholar at Worcester College at the University of Oxford, and Verlinde has been named as the Sachs Global Scholar. Nunn will spend next academic year as a Sachs Visiting Scholar at Princeton.

The Sachs Scholarship is intended to broaden the global experience of its recipients by providing them with the opportunity to study, work or travel abroad after graduation. It was established by classmates and friends of Daniel Sachs, a distinguished Princeton student athlete in the Class of 1960 who attended Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar. Sachs died of cancer at age 28 in 1967. The award is given to those who best exemplify Sachs’ character, intelligence and commitment, and whose scholarship is most likely to benefit the public.

Alice McGuinness

McGuinness, of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, plans to earn two master’s degrees while at Oxford, one in modern South Asian studies and one in forced migration and refugee studies.

A history major at Princeton pursuing certificates in South Asian studies and gender and sexuality studies, McGuinness ultimately hopes to attend law school and work in international migration law.

“I am immensely grateful for this opportunity  — and for all of the mentorship I have received at Princeton,” she said. “I feel deeply indebted to my professors, residential college staff, and peers for their support, which has made it possible for me to thrive at Princeton in ways I never imagined possible. I hope to use my studies at Oxford to become a stronger advocate.”

Professor of History Michael Laffan, the Paula Chow Professor in International and Regional Studies, said he expects McGuinness to excel at Oxford. “I can see Alice … continuing to help others as she lives out Princeton’s motto in a spirit of genuine compassion and consistent hard work,” Laffan wrote in a letter of recommendation.

McGuinness said her commitment to migrant and refugee rights is rooted in her experience studying in India her junior year of high school through a U.S. Department of State scholarship, as well as in her academic and service experiences while at Princeton.