FCLC Junior Named Truman Scholar


Published: April 22, 2010

Joseph Carnevale, Fordham College at Lincoln Center (FCLC) ’11, has been named a 2010 Truman Scholar by the Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation. A double major in natural science and theology and on the pre-med track at FCLC, Carnevale has maintained a 3.9 grade point average throughout his career. He also performs a considerable amount of volunteer services in pursuit of his ultimate achievement: to work as a doctor with an advanced global public health foundation. Carnevale, of the mere 60 Truman scholars nationwide, is one of seven Fordham-produced Truman Scholars since 1987 and the first from FCLC.

Joey Carnevale, FCLC ’11, has been named as one of just 60 2010 Truman Scholars. (Courtesy of Fordham.edu)

OBSERVER: How do you feel about being the first Truman Scholar from Lincoln Center? Are you enjoying the spotlight?

J.C.: I’m honored to make Lincoln Center stand out for Fordham University.

OBSERVER: What medical school is your dream option?

J.C.: I will be happy to get into any medical school. I am exploring my options throughout the northeast and, because I hold EU citizenship, throughout Europe.

OBSERVER: What do you plan on doing after you finish medical school and obtaining your masters in public health?

J.C: With M.D./M.P.H. degrees, I will return to developing regions to work as a physician with an advanced global public health foundation. My focus is on organizations like Intercommunity Development and Involvement (ICODEI) and Doctors Without Borders because of their integration of health care and education. Working directly with organizations such as these will provide the necessary training and experience to establish my own clinic in the developing world with other like-minded professionals.


OBSERVER: Your parents’ background in medicine gave you an interest in pursuing your M.D., but what sparked your interest in global public health?

J.C: Working in rural Kenya and China sparked my interest in Global Public Health.

OBSERVER: When did you volunteer in Kenya?

J.C: During summer 2007, I volunteered with ICODEI, an organization on the Kenya/Uganda border dedicated to fighting HIV/AIDS and poverty by improving education and healthcare. I taught English, mathematics and science. On weekends, I was part of a mobile health care clinic that traveled to remote villages treating the ill.

OBSERVER: How did you get involved with service in China?

J.C: In 2008, two friends and I were asked to travel to the Sichuan Province of China to teach English and phonetics at Xaioyan New School of English Education by Wang XiaoYan, a communications professor at Chengdu University. After a 16-hour flight, crossing 12 time zones, and a two-hour drive, we arrived in the village of Da Hua and became the first native English-speaking teachers at a school located far from China’s eastern coast, where English is rarely heard and Westerners are rarely seen.

OBSERVER: What did you do in China?

J.C: I taught two classes each day with an emphasis on phonetics, prepared daily lesson plans, and employed various methods to ensure that even the most reserved student wanted to participate. The afternoons were spent on personally arranged excursions.

OBSERVER: How did you feel as the American model for these students? Was it rewarding?

J.C: My goal was to create an informal, relaxed setting to practice English conversation. I truly had no idea how personally satisfying this experience would be. Our daily conversations covered topics from American culture to baseball and politics to personal family stories. My students were interested in everything American.

OBSERVER: Clearly you want to make a difference in the world and help others. Who inspires you?

J.C: Rev. Lubanga who founded ICODEI and Paul Farmer, one of the founders of Partners in Health (PIH).

OBSERVER: What do you do for fun, when you actually have time for it?

J.C: I play soccer for fun as often as I can. Greg Palmer, Luiz Loures and I are captains of the FCLC team.

OBSERVER: What’s next?

J.C: After completing my professional education, I expect to be well established in a rural area in the developing world, offering medical and educational support. I am a firm believer in grassroots initiatives and the domino effect they have. By receiving health care and educational opportunities, individuals will be empowered to help themselves. My long-term goal is to create effective clinics/schools in the most disadvantaged parts of the developing world, train a staff to oversee the operation and continue the effort to another area in need.