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Rhodes Scholars Elect For 2006

18 October 2005

Rhodes Scholars Elect For 2006

Nicholas Douglas, Rosara Joseph and Malcolm Birdling have been selected as Rhodes Scholars following a recent selection meeting at Government House in Wellington.

Tenable at Oxford University, Rhodes Scholarships constitute the pinnacle of achievement for university graduates wishing to pursue postgraduate study at one of the world’s leading universities. In this country, the awards are administered by the NZ Vice-Chancellors’ Committee.

Nicholas Douglas is a University of Otago graduate who has completed a Bachelor of Medical Science degree with First Class Honours and is currently a fifth-year medical student. A former head prefect of Burnside High School, he gained A grades in all his bursary subjects at school while combining his academic talents with involvement in rock climbing (NZ age group champion) skiing, hockey, squash and tennis. In his early teens, Nicholas represented Canterbury in badminton and hockey. Music is a big part of Nicholas’ life; he has been a member of the NZ Secondary Schools’ Choir, the Tower New Zealand Youth Choir and more recently the University of Otago Capping Sextet and Cantores (Christchurch Chamber Choir).

At Oxford, he intends undertaking a Master of Global Health Science and then to read for a Doctor of Philosophy. Nicholas plans to return to this country to work as a paediatric oncologist.

Rosara Joseph holds a BA and an LLB with First Class Honours from the University of Canterbury. Rosara was awarded the Canterbury District Law Society Gold Medal in Law for the top undergraduate law student. This year she was appointed as a Judge’s Clerk to the President of the Court of Appeal.

A Christchurch resident, Rosara was awarded many academic prizes atChristchurch Girls’ High School and participated in a wide range of sports such as netball, athletics, cross country and cricket. She took up mountain biking three years ago, received professional coaching just 12 months ago and is currently the New Zealand and Oceania champion.

Rosara hopes to be named in New Zealand’s Commonwealth Games contingent as a representative for this sport when the team is announced in November. The Beijing Olympics in 2008 are a longer-term goal.

At Oxford, Rosara will pursue an MPhil degree in Law, including courses in comparative human rights, evidence, justice and the penal system. She is particularly interested in the areas where law merges with issues of fundamental policy and values. Rosara wishes to practice law with a view to a career in academia.

Malcolm Birdling holds a BA in Political Science and an LLB with First Class Honours from Victoria University of Wellington, and is currently working as a Judge’s Clerk in the Court of Appeal. Malcolm grew up in Upper Hutt and attended Heretaunga College, where he was Dux in 1998.

He has had extensive community involvement, becoming a member of the Upper Hutt Youth Council at the age of 15. Subsequently, Malcolm became involved with the Hutt Valley Youth Health Service, and has recently sat on a national advisory council on the development of a national action plan for human rights, as well as undertaking voluntary work for the Upper Hutt Red Cross and Wellington Community Law Centre. He is accomplished at debating, and has a strong interest in acting.

At Oxford, Malcom will undertake a BCL degree, studying comparative public law and human rights, as well as jurisprudence, political and constitutional theory. He would like to proceed to an MPhil in public law. Malcolm intends to teach and practice public law on his return to New Zealand.


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