Four Indian Americans out of a competitive pool of 34 young students have received a prestigious two-year scholarship and the opportunity to study at a university of their choice next fall in the United Kingdom.
Recipients of the2013 Marshall Scholarships, which is distributed to approximately 40 promising young students by the Marshal Aid Commemoration Commission every year, include scholars Aditya Ashok from Boston College, Aditya Balasubramanian from Harvard University, Paras Minhas from the University of Pittsburgh and Rahul Rekhi from Rice University.
Rekhi, a Barry M. Goldwater and Harry S. Truman Scholar, has participated in several health and policy-based internships at organizations like Beyond Traditional Borders, the World Health Organization and the National Science Foundation. The Rice University bioengineering and economics senior has also interned at the MD Anderson Cancer Center to study cancer imaging, among other types of research. The student has chosen to study biomedical engineering at the University of Oxford, where he will receive his master’s degree.
“I’m both thrilled and humbled by this honor. For me, the Marshall is at once a validation of my ideals, a once-in-a-lifetime intellectual opportunity, and a reminder that my aspirations must always be higher than the self. I view this award as an investment in my mandate to make global impacts in biomedical innovation and public policy,” Rekhi told India-West.
Ashok, a history and biology graduate, served in numerous leadership positions on campus during his time as co-president of the AIDS Awareness Committee. The Indian American student was also heavily involved as a columnist for his college newspaper, The Heights, and was an intern at the Harvard Stem Cell Institute, among other organizations. Most recently, he had the opportunity to intern at the Office of National AIDS Policy at the White House. He will be studying global health at the University of Glasgow August 2013.
“I am pleased to win the Marshall Scholarship, which will provide me with an opportunity to better understand health disparities that exist between the United States and the UK,” Ashok told Boston College.
Balasubramanian will be studying econometrics and mathematical economics at the London School of Economics and Political Science. For about a year, he worked at the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab in New Delhi and focused on the inner workings of political and campaign processes. In college, he served as a business editor and during the summer of 2011, he served as a summer analyst at Goldman Sachs in New York.
“I am most interested in the rising inequality in the United States and India, since they are both countries I have ties to,” Balasubramanian told the Harvard Crimson.
Minhas, who will be studying molecular cell biology at the University College London next fall, told the Post-Gazette that he is interested in furthering his career as a physician and scientist, through the use of the scholarship.
Minhas has received countless awards in college, including a coveted Goldwater Scholarship. He also authored a scientific document in Critical Care Medicine and Anatomical Sciences Education, and most recently served as a health instructor for orphans at the Professional Secretarial Academy in Ghana in the summer of 2011. He is currently an Amgen Scholar at MIT and Research Fellow at the Mayo Clinic.
The Marshall Scholarship covers all costs of living expenses, university fees, book and thesis grants, research, fares to and from the United States, among other costs incurred, according Marshall Scholarship’s Web site.