Fulbright Scholarships

Fulbright Scholarships

Fulbright scholarship recipients are, from left, Patrick Thomas, Rosemary Yiameos,
Theodore Howard, Amy Bender, Matthew Chrisman and Liz Brown. Not pictured is
R. John Noel.

May 27, 1999

Liz Brown

On weekends, Liz Brown has been volunteering at a Houston hospice for AIDS
patients. Her work there is what motivated her to pursue medical research. "With
AIDS, the virus is always one step ahead of us," Brown said.

As a Fulbright scholar at the University of Vienna, she will study the ways
in which yeast cells respond to various types of stress. Such research, she
said, could possibly facilitate the development of better antifungal drugs,
which would benefit AIDS patients and other individuals.

A recently graduated Wiess College senior, Brown believes that Rice does a
great job of helping students find exciting academic opportunities. For example,
she said it wasn’t her idea to apply for a Fulbright: It was her research adviser
Mike Gustin, associate professor of biochemistry and cell biology, who suggested
she pursue the grant.

After completing her Fulbright, Brown will pursue a combined M.D.-Ph.D. program
at the University of Washington.

Amy Bender

As a Fulbright scholar, Amy Bender will pursue a program of independent study
while based in Madrid, Spain. Her area of research will be the territory of
Gibraltar and its implications for Spain’s involvement in the international
community. Both Spain and Britain have claims on Gibraltar, which is located
on Spain’s southern coast.

As a junior, Bender studied Spanish foreign policy while living in Spain as
part of Rice’s study abroad program. In her research, she enjoyed interviewing
Spaniards from every generation and found that the older generation tended to
be more isolationist while Spain’s youth were far more eager to join the international
community. She has also worked as an intern for the U.S. State Department.

A recently graduated Jones College senior, Bender will attend Harvard Law School
after completing her Fulbright. She would like to join a law firm specializing
in international law.

Matthew Chrisman

Matthew Chrisman will be studying philosophy at Tübingen University in
Tübingen, Germany. Noting that American and European philosophers have
recently begun to take each other more seriously, Chrisman believes that this
is an exciting time to be in the middle of the two philosophical traditions
and he sees his Fulbright as a way to be in that middle. In a sense, he said,
he would like to be an intellectual cultural ambassador, bringing his Anglo-American
philosophical background to Tübingen’s German philosophy department.

A recently graduated Will Rice College senior, Chrisman served as a volunteer
tutor, played on the club soccer team for two years and pursued creative writing.
His short stories appeared in the Rice publications "University Blue"
and "Aphorism."

As winner of a Toyota "Youth for Understanding" scholarship he spent
the summer of ’95 in Germany. As a junior he studied abroad at University College
in London.

After completing his Fulbright, Chrisman would like to study philosophy in
graduate school.

Rosemary Yiameos

Fulbright scholar Rosemary Yiameos has one more hurdle to overcome before embarking
on her research trip to Germany to study the repertoire for the oboe as a solo

She must still be accepted at the Staaliche Hochschule for Musik in Freiburg,
Germany. In July, she will audition there before a panel of 10 judges, including
the instructor she hopes to study under, Heinz Holliger.

"The Fulbright really hinges on that," she said about the audition.
"It’s a little stressful right now, but still very exciting."

With the chances very good that she will accepted, Yiameos will study in Germany
until August 2000.

By studying the solo oboe repertoire in Germany, an environment open to new
musical ideas, Yiameos believes she can provide an example to her peers to explore
the solo music written for orchestra instruments and develop their musical imaginations.

"Most importantly, upon returning to the United States, I would develop
ways to share my knowledge and in some way contribute to the continuing tradition
of classical music in America."

Yiameos studied in Germany two years ago, and it was then that she realized
she had previously not been performing her recitals and concertos with a "composer’s
understanding." She studied under Holliger then as well and saw his ability
to make music come alive through contemporary music techniques and by playing
styles specific to the time period of the music.

"I realized then that I had to go back to Germany," she said.

Yiameos is an experienced international traveler. Born in Greece, she moved
to New York with her mother but continued to travel to Greece over the years
to visit her father.

She graduated with her master’s degree in music earlier this month. She believes
the Shepherd School of Music is one of the top music schools in the country.

"It’s the only school I considered," she said. "It has one of
the best student orchestras in the country."

Patrick Thomas

Recent Rice graduate Patrick Thomas will spend his summer getting well acquainted
with the fruit fly.

As a Fulbright scholar, he’ll study in Madrid, Spain, from September through
June 2000, working on a project that could have major implications in how Alzheimer’s
Disease is treated.

Working at the Instituto Cajal, Thomas will study the "scully" gene
in the fruit fly, which is similar to a human gene that codes for certain elements
that contribute to the symptoms Alzheimer’s patients experience. Thomas will
focus on how nutritional and other changes to fruit flies impact the Alzheimer’s-like
side effects.

He sees the Fulbright project not only as an opportunity to make strides in
an important research field, but also as an opportunity to develop himself as
a researcher and scholar.

The Fulbright scholarship fits in perfectly with his long-term goal of becoming
a physician/scientist. When his Fulbright is complete, Thomas will attend the
University of Washington in Seattle, Wash., where he will work on both a medical
degree and a Ph.D.

"When I receive my degrees, it will be time to use that knowledge by helping
people feel better and by investigating the scientific principles that could
create the treatments to help these people continue to feel better," he
wrote in his application for the Fulbright grant.

"My career goal is to practice medicine, but in the end, I also want to
conduct biomedically relevant research," he said.

Theodore Howard

Recently named Fulbright scholar Theodore Howard will head to Vienna, Austria,
to work on a research project to study the automation of homes and offices.

His research will be conducted at the Vienna University of Technology’s Department
of Automation. Results of the project could include user-friendly homes in which
bedroom lights turn on when the alarm clock sounds, coffee makers that know
when to turn on and then turn off when no one is home, lights that turn off
after the last person leaves the house and computers that control the air conditioner.

The project, called SynUTC, is an effort to develop a technique to keep widely
separated clocks synchronized to the Universal Time Coordinates (UTC) global
standard time within a large-area, real-time distributed system.

Lasting from September through May 2000, the project, Howard said, "would
offer me boundless resources and opportunities to learn and to help others learn."

A May graduate with a master’s in electrical engineering, Howard plans to pursue
a career in cutting-edge microprocessor and microchip design, possibly creating
advanced microchip design tools.

R. John Noel

One way or another, John Noel was going to study in Paris under one of the
leading figures in French modern music.

Noel was offered and accepted a Wagoner Scholarship for Study Abroad. Eventually,
though, he accepted the Fulbright scholarship, which will take him to France
for his nine month research project.

The music student will study under French composer Henri Dutilleux and his
wife, Genevieve Joy-Dutilleux.

"The goal of my research will be to trace the evolution of Dutilleux’s
compositional style from its origins to the present," Noel wrote in his
proposal for the Fulbright scholarship. "I will specifically examine how
other composers, especially French composers, have influenced Dutilleux and
how he in turn has contributed to French modern music."

Through the project, Noel will study the complete piano music of Dutilleux
as well as the French piano repertoire with Genevieve Joy-Dutilleux, who has
accepted him as a private student.

The project is an important one, according to Brian Connelly, artist teach
of piano at the Shepherd School of Music, because Henri Dutilleux is a composer
of internationally recognized importance.

"His work–music of enormous beauty, intelligence and aesthetic content–is
deeply admired by artists, and his influence will, in my opinion, continue to
grow, though his music is not yet widely played in the Unites States, nor has
he received the broad critical scholarship his work deserves."

Upon completion of the project, Noel intends to present a lecture-recital on
the music of Dutilleux, which will serve as the basis for his doctoral dissertation.

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