Ignite Innovation

Simret Habte

Voyager Scholar for Public Service

LMU student Simret Habte in a red sweater, smiling at the camera while holding a necklace, on a blue background.

For Simret Habte ’24, the world is at her fingertips. The sociology major and Spanish minor is an inaugural recipient of the Obama-Chesky Scholarship for Public Service, which supports future leaders with a passion for building community and helping others.

During her summer voyage, she visited Mexico and Amsterdam, where she engaged in participatory research, collecting data and meeting with local organizations and advocacy groups to gain hands-on knowledge about their impact and challenges. In addition to this summer research trip, the Obama Foundation-funded scholarship offers a travel stipend every year for 10 years.

Simret’s path to public service and social justice began in high school, where the Nebraska native worked with the Women’s Fund of Omaha to help women access various health resources. She has also been a research assistant to different LMU professors and is part of the McNair Scholars program.

“I am very interested in race and culture in different parts of the world, particularly in black and brown communities,” Habte shared. “I plan to attend graduate school and pursue a Ph.D. in sociology and a research career. It is very impactful work.”