PHILADELPHIA (CBS/AP) — A college student from Philadelphia and another from Pittsburgh who attend school in the City of Brotherly Love are among those selected as Rhodes scholars to pursue post-graduate studies at Oxford University.

Rivka Hyland is a Philadelphia native who attends Harvard University. She credits her freshman year of high school at Friends Select in Center City for setting her on the right academic path:

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“I think that Philadelphia’s Quaker history was really crucial to how I approached studying religion.”

Hyland is a Harvard senior who majors in Islamic studies. She’s proficient in eight modern and classical languages.

“I was raised bilingual in English and Czech,” she tells KYW Newsradio. “I went to the French international school. I became fluent and French there, picked up a little Chinese and German, and now of course I study Arabic and Greek.”Hyland says she plans on studying medieval Christian thought.

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Also chosen was Jennifer Hebert, a University of Pennsylvania senior. She is a varsity oarswoman and national team member who competed in the Under-23 World Rowing Championships in Linz, Austria. She also works to help and instruct physically and cognitively disabled rowers.

Hebert has studied the mechanisms underlying memory as well as drug addiction research and is now examining the effects of nicotine exposure or stress on neural circuitry. At Oxford, she plans to pursue a Master of Science degree in psychiatry.

The scholarships for the winners, chosen from 869 applicants endorsed by 316 colleges and universities, cover all expenses for two or three years of study at the prestigious university in England starting next October.

KYW’s Justin Udo contributed to this story…

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