Connecticut College News
Josh Duclos '04 is one of a record five Camels to win Fulbrights this spring.05/31/2007
Josh Duclos '04
As a freshman at Conn reading the novels of Karel Capek – exploring the tension between government authority and individual freedom – Josh Duclos '04 became fascinated with the Czech Republic.
Duclos, a philosophy major, studied Czech as a sophomore and spent the following spring in Prague. There, he learned about philosophers he'd never heard of before, including Czech dissident Jan Potocka. Duclos wondered if they had had unique ideas that influenced politics, literature and education in the Republic and beyond.
He always wanted to go back – to learn more about the philosophers who intrigue him, and to gain a better perspective on the differences between the Czech and U.S. education systems.
Duclos will get his opportunity in August. He was selected earlier this month to receive a prestigious Fulbright grant to teach and study abroad for an academic year. Four Connecticut College students – new alumni, members of the Class of 2007 – were also accepted.
It's the highest number of Conn students to receive Fulbrights in recent history, and puts the college in the top level of colleges and universities whose students receive these awards. Approximately 1,150 grants are awarded each year, and nearly half of the Connecticut College students nominated for the award were accepted.
Duclos of New Lebanon, N.Y., has traveled and worked widely since leaving Connecticut College. He is currently an English and history teacher at The Darrow School (N.Y.) and plans eventually to pursue a graduate degree in philosophy or intellectual history. He has a brother, Benjamin Duclos, in the Class of 2008 and a sister, Elizabeth Duclos-Orsello, in the class of 1995.
Duclos leaves for the Czech Republic in August. He writes, "I will be splitting my time between Prague and small town to the east called Podebrady where I will be doing my teaching. My research in Prague will focus on Jan Potocka, a 20th century Czech philosopher who is little known outside his native country.
"I became interested in Potocka in 2002 while participating in a SATA exchange semester in Prague. Potocka's philosophy had an enormous influence on Czech literature and politics. One of my reasons for studying Potocka is to investigate the idea that Czech philosophy offers a distinct intellectual tradition of it s own and has not merely adopted the philosophies of other European countries."
Recipients from the Class of 2007 are:
Noah Fralich of New Gloucester, Maine, a scholar in the Goodwin-Niering Center for Conservation Biology and Environmental Studies, will teach in English and research the renewable energy industry in Germany. A major in environmental studies and German, Fralich plans to pursue a degree in environmental policy.
Rose Golder-Novick of Lexington, Mass., plans to travel to Munich, Germany to study the renewal of the Jewish community in Germany and the conflict between German-born Jews and immigrant Eastern European Jews. A religious studies major, Golder-Novick interned at the Pluralism Project at Harvard University. She plans to attend graduate school in religious studies and work in the non-profit sector.
Stephanie Gollobin of Huntington, N.Y., will teach English in Germany and advise an American Studies discussion/debate club. A major in German and American Studies, she plans to pursue a career in education.
Megan McCarthy, of Wellesley, Mass., a scholar of the Toor Cummings Center for International Studies and the Liberal Arts, plans to research glue addiction and treatment among street youth in Honduras. She will work with the Honduran organization Fundación Proniño, which she worked with last summer. A major in psychology and Latin American studies, McCarthy plans to pursue a doctorate in child psychology and work with at-risk youth.
In addition, Lauren Harris, a 2005 Connecticut College alumna, was selected as an alternate. Harris, who lives in Solana Beach, Calif., proposed to study in Ecuador.
Fulbright fellows receive round-trip transportation to the country where they will stay, a living stipend, research allowances and medical insurance. In addition to research, fellows are encouraged to get involved in cultural and/or community activities, such as teaching English or American Studies, volunteering with a non-profit organization, or giving presentations to local groups or in schools.
Established by Congress in 1946, the Fulbright U.S. Student Program is considered the country's leading educational exchange program. Last year, almost 1,300 American students in more than 100 fields of study were offered grants to study, teach English, and conduct research in more than 120 countries.