University of Rochester juniors Kathryn E. Knowles and Andrew N. Niles and sophomore Kristin M. Beck have been named 2007 Barry M. Goldwater Scholars.
The Goldwater Scholarship, which is endowed by the U.S. Congress to honor the late Sen. Barry M. Goldwater, is designed as a competitive fellowship for undergraduate students in science, math, and engineering.
All three recipients of the award have demonstrated an interest and commitment to research by participating in the Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU), which is funded by the National Science Foundation to support highly-qualified students to undertake supervised research projects in the summer.
Beck, of Colts Neck, N.J., is working toward a bachelor of science degree in physics and a bachelor of arts degree in mathematics. She has been recognized for her work in community service, is the recipient of the Iota Book Award for academic achievement, plays flute in the University wind symphony, and is the creator and radio personality of a campus radio science program called "Science Matters."
Knowles, of Spencerport, N.Y., is pursuing a bachelor of science in chemistry and a bachelor of arts with honors in mathematics. She has participated in the Peer Led Team Learning (PLTL) program as a senior workshop leader for chemistry and as a peer tutor in the Center for Academic Support. She is also a member of the women's varsity track and field team and plays the alto saxophone in the University wind symphony.
Niles, of Concord, N.H., is working toward a bachelor of arts with honors in mathematics. He is a teaching assistant for the mathematics department, a managing editor of the University's Journal of Undergraduate Research, a cellist in the University's Chamber Orchestra and the accompanist for the Men's and Women's Glee Clubs.
Since 2002, 15 University students have been named Goldwater Scholars. The scholarship is worth up to $7,500. Sophomore winners receive funding for two years, while junior winners receive funding for their senior year. Each year, 10 to 20 sophomores and juniors compete for the four University nominations to the national Goldwater competition. This year, 317 Goldwater Scholars were selected out of a pool of more than 1,100 candidates.
Applicants must rank in the top quartile of their class while demonstrating outstanding research skills and potential for advanced study in their fields as well as a strong commitment to pursuing research-oriented careers. The average grade point average of Goldwater Scholars is about 3.8 to 4.0 and most scholars go on to obtain doctorate degrees.