Senior Kristen Carter Selected as Finalist for Marshall Scholarship

Marshall Scholarship Finalist Kristen Carter

Senior Biochemistry and Genetics major Kristen Carter will be traveling to the British Consulate in Houston on Monday, November 8, to interview for the prestigious Marshall Scholarship for graduate study in the United Kingdom.

Carter is one of approximately 25 students who will be interviewing in the Southwest Region, which includes Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, and Colorado. Interviews are conducted in eight regions throughout the United States; in the end, only 40 Marshall Scholars are selected from a pool of nearly 1,200 applicants.

Carter is a Biochemistry and Genetics double-major, with minors in Music and Chemistry. She is the president of the Texas A&M Biochemistry and Genetics Society and has played with the Texas A&M Wind Symphony. As an Honors Undergraduate Research Fellow, she is conducting research on the Mouse Hepatitis Virus under Dr. Julian Leibowitz. In the future, she intends to pursue an MD/PhD and hopes to develop improved treatments and vaccines for viruses, including malaria. If selected as a Marshall Scholar, she will pursue a DPhil in Clinical medicine at the University of Oxford.

Texas A&M University has produced four Marshall Scholars, the most recent being Faye Hays (ENDS) in 2007 and Joshua Siepel (GENE) and Maya Weilundemo (ENGL) in 2004. In the recent years, several Aggies have progressed to the finalist interviews: Paige Ibanez (ENGL & HIST) and Karthik Venkatraj (INST) in 2010, Matthew Hickey (BICH) in 2009, and Jennifer Snider (BESC) in 2006.

The Marshall Scholarships began in 1953 as a gesture of thanks from the British Government for the US assistance in rebuilding Europe after World War II. Former Marshall Scholars include Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer and New York Times Foreign Affairs columnist Thomas Friedman. According to the Marshall Scholarship Foundation, as future leaders, Marshall Scholars are “expected to strengthen the enduring relationship between the British and American peoples, their governments and their institutions. Marshall Scholars are talented, independent and wide-ranging, and their time as Scholars enhances their intellectual and personal growth. Their direct engagement with Britain through its best academic programmes contributes to their ultimate personal success.”

Because of the fierce competition for these scholarships, the preliminary process to be selected as an official University nominee is quite rigorous. Currently enrolled students and recent graduates should apply for selection in April, with the official deadline for the scholarships being in early October. To be awarded the University’s nomination, a student must show strong scholarly potential, demonstrated through their academic record and letters of recommendation from faculty, leadership ability, demonstrated through their involvement in student and civic organizations, and excellent speaking and analytical skills, as demonstrated in a series of interviews.

Once approved, prospective nominees can expect to spend months developing their applications as they work closely under the advice and guidance of faculty and academic advisors. The official announcement of university endorsement is made only after the nominees submit their finalized application to the scholarship foundations.

For more information, please contact Mr. Kyle Mox, National Scholarships Coordinator in the Honors Programs office – (979) 845-1957 or kemox@tamu.edu.

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