Two ND seniors named Rhodes Scholars
Observer Staff Report | Sunday, November 20, 2016
On Saturday, two women from Notre Dame — seniors Alexis Doyle and Grace Watkins — were named Rhodes Scholars, according to a University press release.
Doyle and Watkins are the University’s 18th and 19th Rhodes Scholars, and were two of 32 Rhodes Scholars selected from a pool of 882 candidates. Notre Dame has previously had women selected as Rhodes Scholars, but never two in the same year.
“We are very proud of Grace and Alexis for earning the distinction of being named Rhodes Scholars,” University President Fr. John Jenkins said in the release. “It is a tremendous honor not only for them, but for all of us here at Notre Dame.”
Doyle, originally from Los Altos, California, is a biological sciences major with minor in international peace studies and is a participant in the Hesburgh Program in Public Service, the Glynn Family Honors Program and the Hesburgh-Yusko Scholars Program.
A resident assistant in Ryan Hall, Doyle is also a teaching assistant for honors mathematics and will attend the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai after her studies at Oxford.
“I am deeply grateful for everyone who has supported my learning and personal growth over the past four years at Notre Dame,” Doyle said in the release. “Receiving this scholarship is a huge honor, but one that certainly reflects the quality of the incredible support system that I have at Notre Dame – in my peers, professors, my mentors and in the South Bend community. I am very energized to use this scholarship to prepare myself better to serve as an advocate for health.”
Watkins, who was also selected as a 2016 Truman Scholar, is a philosophy major with a minor in philosophy, politics and economics.
Watkins recently spearheaded the creation of a sexual assault survivors group at Notre Dame, and serves as the University Policy Liaison on behalf of Student Government.
Watkins additionally serves as the co-president of College Democrats at Notre Dame, and will pursue a doctor in philosophy degree in school-legal studies at Oxford.
“I am so grateful for this incredible opportunity to study at Oxford alongside other students who want to make a difference in the world,” Watkins said in the release. “I attribute all credit to Jeffrey Thibert and the other advisers at Flatley Center for Undergraduate Scholarly Engagement, as well as the professors, friends and family who supported me through the process.”
According to the release, approximately 2,500 students applied for endorsements from their universities for the Rhodes Scholarships, 882 of which were endorsed by their respective universities.
“I want to congratulate first of all Grace and Alexis, but also the faculty here at Notre Dame who taught them and the staff of the Flatley Center for Undergraduate Scholarly Engagement who put in countless hours assisting Grace, Alexis and our other candidates for the Rhodes and other scholars’ programs,” Jenkins said in the release.