Four University of Maryland students have been awarded scholarships by the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation, which encourages students to pursue advanced study and careers in the sciences, engineering and mathematics.
Juniors Shane Falcinelli, Benjamin Gastfriend, Nathan Ng and Iowis Zhu were among the 260 Barry Goldwater Scholars selected from 1,206 students nominated nationally this year. The four students, who are all members of the UMD Honors College, plan to pursue doctoral degrees in their areas of study and to become university professors.
ECON major Ng—who also is majoring in physics and mathematics—is interested in theoretical condensed matter physics and has plans to conduct research in high-temperature superconductivity.
With Frank Graziani at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Ng studied the dynamics of the nuclear fuel used for a fusion experiment. In the laboratory of Paulo Bedaque, physics professor, Ng examined the arrangements of nickel atoms in very high magnetic fields, a scenario that may be found in the crusts of some neutron stars. And with Physics Professors William Dorland and Victor Galitski, Ng aims to describe the dynamics of low-temperature electron gases, which will help us better understand the relationship between the breakdown of superconductivity and the thermal motion of the conducting material.
“The most successful young physicists I have nurtured share certain qualities: mathematical talent, attention to detail, fearless ambition and persistence in the face of seemingly insurmountable technical problems. Nathan has all of these qualities; he has everything it takes to be a very successful physicist,” said Dorland, who is also director of the Honors College.
Read more about UMD’s other Goldwater Scholars.
The Goldwater Scholarship program was created in 1986 to identify students of outstanding ability and promise in science, engineering and mathematics, and to encourage their pursuit of advanced study and research careers. The Goldwater Foundation has honored 51 University of Maryland winners since the program’s first award was given in 1989. Prior Goldwater scholars and nominees from UMD have continued their impressive academic and research pursuits at leading institutions around the world and have garnered additional recognition as:
· A Rhodes Scholar
· A Truman Scholar
· National Science Foundation graduate research fellows
· Gates Cambridge and Churchill Scholars
· A Clarendon Fund Scholar
Colleges and universities may submit up to four nominations annually for these awards. Goldwater scholars receive one- or two-year scholarships that cover the cost of tuition, fees, books, and room and board up to $7,500 per year. These scholarships are a stepping-stone to future support for their research careers.
Article and photo courtesy of the College of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences.