Thomas Batterman (C’22), a researcher at the Department of Justice who discovered fresh information on a medieval plague while at Georgetown, has been awarded the 2024 Rhodes Scholarship, the oldest and most coveted international scholarship.
Batterman is one of only 32 Rhodes Scholars in the country. More than 30 other Georgetown students and alumni have earned the scholarship, including last year’s two honorees, Atharv Gupta (SFS’23) and Isabella Turilli (SFS’22), as well as former President Bill Clinton (SFS’68).
The scholarship selects promising young people from throughout the world who exhibit integrity, leadership, character, intellect, and a dedication to service to study at Oxford.
“The Rhodes Scholarship is a remarkable achievement. On behalf of our university, I wish to offer the sincerest congratulations to Thomas,” says Georgetown President John J. DeGioia. “Through his deep research and innovative approaches to the pursuit of knowledge, Thomas embodies a deep commitment to leadership, excellence and service to our world. We look forward to all that he will contribute in the years ahead.”
Batterman will study Late Antique and Byzantine Studies as well as the History of War at Oxford.
Batterman works as a research specialist for the US Department of Justice on a team that investigates war crimes.
He investigated centuries of writing at Georgetown to make new discoveries about an early medieval plague — a discovery in his undergraduate thesis that earned the Morris Historical Medal for best thesis from Georgetown’s History Department and helped shape an article that will be published in an academic journal next spring.
Batterman’s research approaches — cross-referencing primary sources, sorting through contradictory claims — are talents he now employs in his day-to-day work at the DOJ.
“Tommy is fervently committed to public service, has varied and unique interests, is respected by his peers, colleagues and professors, is a hard worker and unquestionably brilliant,” says Lauren Tuckley, director for the Center of Research and Fellowships.