Second-year art therapy graduate student Rachel Blankenship has received the Fulbright Award in Health, Well-Being, and Sport at the University of Stirling in Scotland to study the integration of art therapy and sports psychology.
Blankenship will head to Scotland this September, where she will engage in research focusing on how the integration of art therapy techniques aids the rehabilitation of professional athletes who are recovering from injury.
A former collegiate and professional athlete herself, Blankenship understands the pressures faced by athletes and the impact on their mental health and overall well-being.
“I am extremely honored to receive the Fulbright/University of Stirling Award in Health, Well-being, and Sport and represent Florida State internationally,” said Blankenship. “Through studying art therapy, I realized there was an exciting opportunity to merge two of my biggest passions: art and sport. I have found that the meditative qualities at the intersection of these areas provide an outlet to express emotion and movement. This has incredible potential for the future of wellness among athletic populations.”
Outside of her studies and research, Blankenship is looking forward to exploring the UK with her husband, who will be joining her in Scotland, and getting involved with local sports teams.
Blankenship credits several offices at FSU with supporting her through the Fulbright process.
“I am incredibly grateful for the continued support and encouragement of faculty and staff within the art therapy program,” she said. “I also want to thank the Office of Graduate Fellowships and Awards for their invaluable guidance throughout this process.”
You can follow Rachel on her Fulbright journey on Instagram at @rach.blank.