For many college students, studying abroad is a dream come true. For PBA senior Kyle Martin, a semester abroad also stretched him academically.
“I wanted an academic challenge, and I got one,” said Martin, a history major who devoted more than 60 hours per week to reading and writing research papers at the University of Oxford. “My tutors did a great job pushing me outside my academic comfort zone by giving me a lot of independent work, which encouraged me to take ownership of my learning.”
Martin’s hard work paid off. He returned from Oxford having earned the prestigious de Jager prize in two categories: British culture and an undergraduate research seminar. For the latter, Martin wrote a 4,000-word comparative research project on economic reforms in Ghana and the Ivory Coast, two neighboring nations in West Africa.
Other high-achieving PBA students have won prizes during their time at Oxford. They include Anneliese Hardman, Rachel Sakrisson, Rachel Green, Kyle Walding, Morgan Hirchert and Lanie Johnson.
Martin is a student in PBA’s Frederick M. Supper Honors Program and a Farish scholar, receiving a full, four-year scholarship based on academic merit. He is the son of PBA alumni Randy and Heidi Martin and the brother of PBA alumna and Fulbright recipient Kristi Martin.
At the urging of honors professors Drs. Tom St. Antoine and Gary Poe, Martin studied in the Scholarship and Christianity in Oxford (SCIO) program, a research and educational institute in Oxford.
Martin went abroad through PBA’s David and Leighan Rinker Center for Experiential Learning, which offers students numerous opportunities to study in more than 20 locations across five continents. With the support of the center, 2,000 people from PBA traveled around the world since 2011.
At PBA, Martin has held leadership roles in the Presidential Ambassadors, Chapel Office, Mock Trial team and Pre-Law Student Association. He has served as president of the Pre-Law Student Association since last August. He was an orientation leader for new students during Welcome Week and one of five campus delegates to the Student Leadership Academy, a summit in Washington, D.C.
In 2020, Martin led a group of 15 high-schoolers on a weeklong trip to Antigua, Guatemala with Hope Project International. Since 2019, he has volunteered in a maximum-security prison, serving food and conversing with inmates in an interfaith chapel.
He plans to apply to law school this fall. He is interested in civil litigation on the defense side.
Photo 1: Kyle Martin poses for a photo at Christ Church while studying abroad at Oxford.
Photo 2: Kyle Martin poses for a photo at St. Michael at the North Gate, a church in central Oxford, England.
Photo 3: Kyle Martin and a group of other students visit Stonehenge.