2-minute read

Scholarship allows freshman to pursue passion for animal science

Ohio State Marion freshman animal sciences major, Jonah Bowdle is making the most of his college education as a 2023 recipient of the Wm. Kay Davis Excellence Scholarship he earned as an incoming freshman.

The Marion Pleasant High School graduate was awarded $5,000 toward his 2023-24 tuition at Ohio State Marion.  Having academics paid for has given Bowdle the ability in his first year to focus on academics and to pursue his passion for learning about animals.

“I have been allowed to go to college this year from scholarships. That has played a part in allowing me to do any of this,” said Bowdle.  

“I am very dedicated to academics,” he said.  In fact, “I love academics. It (the Wm. Kay Davis Excellence Scholarship) has just enabled me to pursue my passions, which is primarily animals, educating people about animals, learning about animals,” Bowdle shared.

Young man in sweater holding iguana

“For the last six years I have kept and bred exotic animals, specifically reptiles,” he said. "I also work with birds and fish and insects.”  

Bowdle has had multiple experiences that led him to the ultimate conclusion that his true passion is working with, helping and rehabilitating animals. 

“It’s like a personal hobby of mine,” he said, “but I also know through making YouTube videos and my work over the last two summers for the Marion County Parks District doing informational presentations about animals, like native wildlife and that kind of thing.”  

Bowdle said that there are a couple different career paths he is thinking about.

“The main one right now is vet school.  I am a pre-vet major.  I am doing animal science but I’m also getting the prerequisites for vet school,” he said. “My goal is to be a zoo vet.”   

“If that is not the path that I go down, then it will be educating people about animals,” Bowdle said. “If I don’t get into vet school, I will go to graduate school to learn more about animals, animal science or zoology and then go on to do professorial work or maybe working at a zoo in some capacity as far as educating and that type of thing,” he added.

"This scholarship is enabling me to do that, to pursue my bachelor's degree, my career," said Bowdle.

"The Wm. Kay Davis Excellence Scholarship is allowing me to take the classes I need to pursue my future.  This past semester, I started with zoology and organic chemistry.  Next semester I am starting my animal science coursework from my major,” he shared.  

Bowdle said, "being part of honors coursework and being awarded his scholarship has given this freshman an amazing opportunity that he felt very thankful for."

“This allows me to do what I really love.  I hope to go on to do cool things with my education and with the opportunity of going to college and everything,” he said.

“I am extremely thankful that I did this first-year foundation,” Bowdle said. “I am just trying my best to graduate with the least debt possible is going to really allow me to focus on my academics.  That is the huge thing.  Not having to stress so much about paying for it and just being able to dive in to learning.”  

Wm. Kay Davis Excellence Scholarships are eligible for renewal for future years for students who remain at Ohio State Marion and meet academic requirements including GPA and engagement in the honors program.

Scholarship awards of up to $5000 are given to 3 incoming honors students toward tuition. Apply for the Ohio State Marion Honors program by February 15, 2024.  To learn more visit:  https://osumarion.osu.edu/academics/honors-undergrad-research/research-funding-opportunities or email maharry.1@osu.edu.

About The Ohio State University at Marion
Established in 1957, The Ohio State University at Marion is part of The Ohio State University’s statewide system of campuses. Students at Ohio State Marion benefit from personal attention in small classes and a culture of caring that permeates the campus, while also enjoying unparalleled access to world renown faculty experts and the breadth and depth of opportunity synonymous being part of one of the most comprehensive and respected public research universities in the world.  Students at Ohio State Marion can begin one to three years of 200+ Ohio State majors, later making the seamless transition to the Columbus campus, or complete their Ohio State degree in biology, business, education, engineering technology, English, history, psychology, RN to BSN, and social work entirely on the Marion campus.