Roanoke College

Patrick Dowling accepted into Fulbright Summer Institute

  • Patrick Dowling accepted into Fulbright Summer Institute

  • 06/03/13
  • Roanoke College student Patrick Dowling has been accepted into a Fulbright Summer Institute to study at the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom on one of the most prestigious and selective summer scholarship programs in the world. Dowling will spend the month of June at the University of Bristol Summer Institute for Young American Student Leaders with nine other American students. The theme of the program is Slavery and the Atlantic Heritage.

    Dowling is a rising sophomore from Roanoke and a graduate of Hidden Valley High School.

    Dowling became interested in the Fulbright Summer Institute after taking a course through Roanoke's Intellectual Inquiry core curriculum. The curriculum replaces typical introductory courses with courses that present fundamental concepts through related topics selected by the student. 

    A pre-med student, Dowling took an introductory seminar last fall from Dr. Jesse Bucher, assistant professor of history, about the Atlantic Slave Trade. In the course, Dowling studied the doctor's dilemma of whether or not to treat slaves who fell ill onboard the ships, thus enabling the slave trade.

    Dowling, who is a volunteer EMT, drew on his experience from Roanoke's course and his EMT background in connecting his interests to the Fulbright Summer Institute on Slavery and the Atlantic Heritage.

    "Patrick ideally reflects the core intentions of the liberal arts education that we provide at Roanoke College," Bucher said. "Although Patrick has long-term professional interests in medicine, he readily immerses himself in studies of the humanities. Patrick's understanding of the research process, and his immense curiosity for learning, demonstrate a high level of intellectual maturity and engagement."

    Dowling was encouraged to apply for the Fulbright Summer Institute by Bucher and also by Dr. DorothyBelle Poli, his advisor. He also received support in the rigorous application process from Dr. Adrienne Bloss, associate dean for academic affairs and institutional relations. Dowling first submitted his application for the program in March. In April, he completed a phone interview and in May, he learned he was accepted to the program, which will be his first trip abroad.

    Dowling expects to be immersed in study for the month but may have the opportunity to meet the Mayor of Bristol, as well as members of Parliament and other UK officials through the Fulbright Summer Institute.

    The Fulbright Summer Institute considers applicants from a wide range of backgrounds. In making the awards, the Fulbright Commission looks for academic excellence and a range of extracurricular and community activities, along with demonstrated ambassadorial skills and plan to give back to the applicant's country upon returning.

    The U.S. - U.K. 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.


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