Sara Dada of Marietta has become the first ever Fulbright scholar at Europe’s top vet school, the Royal Veterinary College in London.
The highly competitive Fulbright program traditionally receives more than 800 applications from the brightest and most promising graduates in the US. Dada beat these applicants to become the first ever Fulbright scholar at the RVC and has just returned to London after the Christmas break to continue her MSc One Health (Infectious Diseases) graduate degree in London.
Prior to studying at the RVC, Dada completed her undergraduate degree in Public Policy at Georgia Institute of Technology, and she knew she wanted to take her studies overseas and focus them on public and global health.
“While my background is in public policy, I have been keen to pursue public health since I began studying at the university level,” Dada said. “At Georgia Tech, I took as many health-related courses and research projects as I could find to supplement my academics. I came across the One Health movement and found it to be really insightful. Coming from a liberal arts background, I really believe in the importance of interdisciplinary understanding in order to tackle global challenges and I think One Health does just that.
“I applied for the Fulbright in the United Kingdom because I found this incredible One Health grad program and then was thrilled to find that it was the first year that Fulbright was running a Partnership Award with the RVC!”
Dada’s course will be completed as a full time one-year course, and will enable her to evaluate the impacts of multi-host infections on human, animal and ecosystem health and economics, via food, disease vectors or the environment.
The US-UK Fulbright Commission run the Fulbright scholarship program and encourage talented individuals to take up educational opportunities between the US and UK as part of a global program.
The RVC is the UK’s largest independent veterinary school and offers an interactive, student focused, and diverse education curriculum that enables its students to take advantage of 1-1 tutorials, larger style lectures and many practical laboratory sessions for hands on learning.
Dada started her course in September 2017 and is loving the experience. Heading back to the UK for her second semester, Dada said, “I’m really enjoying my time in London, I am extremely thankful to the Royal Veterinary College for providing me with the opportunity to add to my global education and be an ambassador for my country at the university.
“I’m finding it so interesting being at a veterinary college with a social science background and I love that the Royal Veterinary College welcomes this. I really enjoy the challenge of learning a new subject, especially one that has the potential to have such wide-ranging implications for health across the world.”
Looking to the future, Dada is thinking about completing a placement year and then possibly studying a PhD after graduating from the Royal Veterinary College. Dada is incredibly grateful for the prospects that have arisen from being a Fulbright Scholar and would welcome a career in a global organization or for a charity that focuses on development or aid.