Fri, 04/06/2018

Four Commonwealth Honors College students have each been awarded a nationally competitive scholarship for their outstanding research and achievements in the STEM fields.

Edridge D’Souza, a junior biochemistry major, and Eric Wuesthoff, a junior ecology and conservation student, won the prestigious Barry Goldwater Scholarship. Kyle Vedder, a junior studying computer science, won a Goldwater honorable mention.

The Goldwater Scholarship is a highly competitive, nationally-recognized award for sophomore and junior students pursuing research careers in the natural sciences, mathematics, or engineering. Among the more than 1,200 Goldwater applications submitted in 2018, there were 200 scholarships awarded and 281 honorable mention recognitions.

Sophomore Kenneth Lin, an astrophysics student, won a Nakatani RIES Scholarship, which will award Lin a thirteen-week research trip to a lab in Japan. He is one of twelve students to receive this award from a group of 126 applicants.

The students’ applications were sponsored by the Office of National Scholarship Advisement (ONSA), which mentors, supports, and nominates UMass Amherst students applying for competitive national fellowships and scholarships, such as the Goldwater, Fulbright, and Gates-Cambridge, among others.

ONSA Director Madalina Akli congratulated the four CHC students on their achievements.

“These awards are the gold standard for undergraduate researchers,” Dr. Akli said.

Each year, ONSA nominates up to four students for the Goldwater Award. Additionally, ONSA works with students from across the campus to inform them about these opportunities, answer their questions, and help them put their best applications forward.