Palaeontology student receives prestigious Fulbright Award
18 September 2012
Rachel Frigot, a student at the University of Bristol’s School of Earth Sciences has received a Fulbright Award to enable her to study at Johns Hopkins University in the US on one of the most prestigious and selective scholarship programmes operating world-wide.
Created by treaty in 1948, the US-UK Fulbright Commission is the only bi-lateral, transatlantic scholarship programme, offering awards for study or research in any field, at any accredited US or UK university. The Commission is part of the Fulbright programme conceived by Senator J. William Fulbright in the aftermath of World War II to promote leadership, learning and empathy between nations through educational exchange. Award recipients will be the future leaders for tomorrow and support the “special relationship” between the US and UK.
Rachel Frigot grew up in Dorset and has wanted a career with fossils since the age of three. She obtained her undergraduate MSci degree in Natural Sciences from Trinity College, Bristol and her postgraduate MSc in Palaeobiology from the University of Bristol. She has had various jobs in education, being self employed as a tutor and then contracted to design earth sciences workshops for schools. Rachel currently studies the field of biomechanics where engineering techniques are used to investigate the feats that extinct animals were able to perform.
Commenting on receiving the Award, Rachel said: “I am delighted and honoured to receive such a special award. This is going to help me build on my academic career at Bristol and study palaeontology and functional anatomy at the highest levels, pursuing my doctorate at a fantastic institution. I’m very proud to represent the UK and to encourage dialogue between our countries. As a Fulbright Scholar I will be helping to bridge the cultural divide between the US and the UK.”
The Fulbright Commission selects scholars through a rigorous application and interview process. In making these awards the Commission looks not only for academic excellence but a focused application, a range of extracurricular and community activities, demonstrated ambassadorial skills, a desire to further the Fulbright Programme and a plan to give back to the recipient’s home country upon returning.
Nearly 300,000 extraordinary women and men from all over the world have had their lives changed as participants in the Fulbright Programme. Of these alumni, approximately 15,000 UK nationals have studied in the US and 12,000 US nationals in the UK on Fulbright educational exchange programmes.
Notable alumni of the US-UK Commission include: Malcolm Bradbury, novelist; Liam Byrne, politician; Milton Friedman, economist and Nobel Prize Winner 1976; Charles Kennedy, politician; John Lithgow, actor; Tarik O’Regan, composer; Sylvia Plath, poet;
Lord William Wallace, politician; Ian Rankin, novelist; Sir Christopher Rose QC, judge;
Baroness (Shirley) Williams, politician; Vanessa Heaney, journalist BBC World Service; and Toby Young, journalist and playwright.
The Commission is funded partially by the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills in the UK and the US Department of State, with additional support coming from a variety of individual and institutional partners including many leading UK universities and an annual contribution from the Scottish Government.
For More Information: www.fulbright.org.uk