PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — Two current Brown University students and a 2016 alumnus have earned highly competitive awards to pursue graduate study and research at two of the world’s most esteemed universities. The awards, from the Knight-Hennessy Scholars program and Keasbey Memorial Foundation, will allow the Brown recipients to pursue graduate degrees at Stanford and Oxford universities, respectively.
This year marks the launch the Knight-Hennessy Scholars program, which aims to develop a community of future global leaders to address complex challenges through collaboration and innovation. Recipients of the scholarship — including Brown Class of 2016 graduate Khalil Fuller and current senior Ileana Pirozzi — receive full funding to pursue any graduate degree at Stanford.
American students who earn a Keasbey Fellowship are awarded up to two years of full funding to attend a graduate program at one of the British universities with which the Keasbey Foundation is affiliated. Students are selected on a rotating basis from Amherst, Bowdoin, Brown, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Haverford, Middlebury, Princeton, Swarthmore, Wesleyan and Yale. Students at these institutions are only eligible for the fellowship every three years. Beginning next year, current Brown senior Duncan Martinson will study at Oxford.
“Brown University is thrilled to have three scholars among the cohorts of these two prestigious programs,” said Linda Dunleavy, associate dean of the College for fellowships. “The inaugural Knight-Hennessy scholarships present a wonderful opportunity to not only pursue graduate studies at Stanford with generous support, but also to work together with other young motivated leaders across disciplines to address the world’s most pressing problems. As Brown only can compete for the Keasbey every three years, we are especially excited that Duncan won this year.”
Fuller, from Los Angeles, graduated from Brown in 2016 with a bachelor’s degree in education. As a Knight-Hennessy scholar, he will pursue a master’s in business administration at Stanford Graduate School of Business. Fuller is co-founder and CEO of the nonprofit educational company Learn Fresh, which offers educational programming in 30 U.S. states.
He also oversees the development and distribution of NBA Math Hoops, an NBA-licensed enrichment tool bringing together basketball and math for elementary and middle school students. At Brown, he was vice president of the Brown Entrepreneurship Program, and captain of the club ice hockey team. He was named an Echoing Green fellow for social entrepreneurs, won the Westly Prize for young innovators in California, and was selected to Forbes’ list of the top social entrepreneurs in the world under the age of 30.
Martinson is an applied math concentrator from Evanston, Illinois, who was inducted to Phi Beta Kappa as a junior.
As a Keasbey scholar, Martinson plans to pursue a master’s of science in mathematics at Oxford University. This summer, Martinson conducted research at the University of Michigan to discover new genetic and chemical modifiers of blood clotting. During his junior year, he was a clinical research intern for the Rhode Island Partial Hospitalization Program. There, he collected, organized and systemized large data sets for the purpose of research in psychiatry and mental health. Martinson is a pre-health careers peer advisor and a member of the Brown pre-med club, both of which aid undergraduates in preparing for their future medical-school candidacies.
Pirozzi is a bioengineering and biomedical engineering concentrator from Colleferro, Italy.
The Knight-Hennessy scholarship would enable her to pursue a Ph.D. in bioengineering at Stanford School of Engineering. Pirozzi was a research intern at the NASA Ames Research Center and at the Tripathi Biomedical Engineering Lab at Brown. She was elected president of the Rhode Island Alpha Chapter of Tau Beta Pi, the national engineering honors society. Additionally, she was named a Vincent and Ruby DiMase Research Fellow at Brown’s School of Engineering and received a K.T. Romer Undergraduate Teaching and Research Award.