Three Pomona College seniors have received scholarships to pursue graduate degrees at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom.
Drew Quinn PO ’12 is this year’s recipient of the Downing Scholarship, an annual scholarship awarded by Pomona College that pays for Pomona graduates to get their Masters at Cambridge.
Quinn will be doing research on viral resistance in Drosophila fruit flies. He plans to pursue a Ph.D. in molecular biology in the U.S. later.
“It’s a six year commitment to go get your Ph.D. in the U.S.,” Quinn said. “At the time I was more unsure whether I wanted to do a research career or not, but at the same time I still wanted the chance to experience what a Ph.D. program would be like. This is a great opportunity to see what that’s like and also explore other options, be in a new place, get new perspectives all before settling down more for a six year commitment.”
Camille Cole PO ’12 is the second Pomona student ever to receive the competitive Gates Cambridge Scholarship, a national award established in 2000 by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. It is awarded to 90 students outside of the United Kingdom each year.
Cole plans to pursue a Masters at Cambridge in historical studies, and will be writing her dissertation on social imperial history in 19th century Iraq.
“I decided to apply because I wanted to go to grad school,” Cole said. “But going to a Ph.D. program right now seemed too intense. Cambridge also has one of the best history programs in the world.”
Cole, who has studied Arabic in college, will continue learning the language and potentially begin learning Farsi as well.
“I’m looking at the British entrance into southern Iraq and how their experience there has been made ambivalent by the environment, by the people living there,” Cole said.
Will Fossum PO ’12 received one of the 14 Churchill Scholarships awarded this year. He is the third Pomona student to have received the prestigious scholarship, which is awarded to students pursuing degrees in engineering, math or the sciences.
Will, a math and chemistry double major, plans to do research on cellular membranes at Cambridge.
“I’m definitely excited,” he said. “It’s going to give me a chance to try out some other areas in biophysics and get a better sense on what to focus my research on.”