UM student chosen as Rhodes scholar

By Dan Cortez and Amber Hunt
Detroit Free Press

A University of Michigan student in a joint MD/PhD program is one of 32 people nationwide to be selected as a Rhodes scholar for 2009, the scholarship trust announced Sunday.

Abdulrahman M. El-Sayed of Ann Arbor completed a joint degree in biology and political science in 2007 before beginning the new joint program in medicine and public health.

El-Sayed is a starting varsity lacrosse player and junior member of Phi Beta Kappa, according to the Virginia-based Rhodes Trust, which selected the scholars from 769 applicants endorsed by 207 colleges and universities.

The scholarships, the oldest of the international study awards available to American students, provide two or three years of study. The students are to enter Oxford University in England next October.

The value of the Rhodes scholarship varies depending on the field of study, though it averages about $50,000 per year.

El-Sayed served as vice president of the Michigan Muslim Students' Association and Head Counselor of the Michigan Muslim Youth council. His intended field of study for the scholarship is global health science.