Graduating from high school in 2020, Dominique Bowleg said that all of her college application plans came to a screeching halt. Fast forward to today the 19-year-old former BREEF BESS Scholar is now completing her junior year in college abroad.
This young Bahamian said that after applying for, and being accepted into the BREEF BESS Scholar Program, she regained the momentum she needed to get back on track.
“The opportunity at BREEF really helped to steer my motivation again and help me to realize why I entered this field,” she said.
Dominique is studying Marine Biology at Spring Hill College. As she narrows down on exactly what she plans to specialize in, she is taking more classes on the genetic synthesization of coral reefs.
“That’s one of my passions, so one field I’m looking at is synthetically genetically modifying coral DNA.”
“I know some people say it sounds tough but I find it really interesting and if that works it’s going to be a huge game changer in helping to keep these things long-lasting in their environment. So that’s what I’m focused on at the moment.” she said.
“When I was younger I watched this show called Dolphin Tale and I told my mother that I wanted to do that.” She continued, “When I grew up I realized that a lot of females were not in this field so that’s one more thing that drove me to come more toward this profession.”
At the end of the day Dominique says she understands that she may face obstacles as a woman working in STEM. However she is not dismayed in the slightest and encourages everyone to be a part of the solution for a more sustainable future.
The college student explained how she gained a strong love for the ocean and marine life, and what motivates her to work in this field.
“We all need to promote and conserve our environment and once we take gender away from that we can come together and do a better job at protecting the natural resources that we have.”