NSF Awards Graduate Research Fellowships to a Dozen U of A Students

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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Twelve University of Arkansas students – six undergraduate students, three recent graduates, and three graduate students – have received National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowships for the upcoming academic year. Each fellowship is worth $32,000 per year and can be renewed for up to three years. Along with the renewable stipend, each student’s institution will receive $12,000 per year, bringing the total amount of funding awarded to these 12 students to more than $1.5 million.

"This has been an exceptional year for our students receiving national recognition," said Chancellor G. David Gearhart. "They have received more than $2.4 million in scholarships, and no award is more impressive than the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship. Twelve of our current students or recent graduates have received this prestigious award. Together these students will receive more than $1.5 million dollars in support for graduate study. And ten additional students have received honorable mention. We are incredibly proud of the students and of the faculty who have mentored them. It is a remarkable accomplishment."

Since 1952, the National Science Foundation has awarded the highly competitive Graduate Research Fellowship to more than 46,000 students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, the so-called STEM fields. The award recognizes not only academic excellence, but also the expected future contribution that each student’s research will have to his or her field and to society at large.

  • Jeremy Dunklin of Haughton, Louisiana, is a graduate student in chemical engineering at the University of Arkansas. He received his undergraduate degree from Southern Arkansas University.
  • Megan Dunn of Muskogee, Oklahoma, majored in chemical engineering and graduated from the University of Arkansas in 2013. Dunn was a member of the Honors College as an undergraduate. She is currently a graduate student at the University of Michigan. 
  • William Erwin of Washington, Arkansas, graduated from the University of Arkansas in 2012 as a chemical engineering major with minors in chemistry and mathematics. As an undergraduate, Erwin was an Honors College student. He is currently a graduate student at Vanderbilt University.
  • Gregory Forcherio of Pacific, Missouri, is a graduate student in microelectronics-photonics at the U of A. He received his undergraduate degree from Southeast Missouri State.
  • Courtney Hill of Jonesboro is a senior Honors College student majoring in civil engineering with a sustainability minor. She also received a 2014 Fulbright Scholarship to South Korea. After completing her Fulbright, Hill plans to attend graduate school at the University of Virginia.
  • Ross Liederbach of Tulsa, Oklahoma, is a senior Honors College student majoring in electrical engineering with a minor in mathematics. He will attend graduate school at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
  • Frederick McCollum of Forrest City is a senior Honors College student pursuing degrees in mathematics and computer science. He will attend graduate school at New York University’s Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences.
  • Justin Norman of Hot Springs graduated from the University of Arkansas in 2013 with degrees in chemical engineering and physics with honors. He is currently a graduate student at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
  • Trent Rogers of Bella Vista is a senior majoring in mathematics. He will attend graduate school at the University of Arkansas.
  • William Stiritz of Russellville is a senior Honors College student majoring in biology with a Spanish minor. He will attend the University of Arkansas for graduate studies in ecology.
  • Nasya Moriah Sturdivant of Raleigh, North Carolina, is a graduate student in biomedical engineering. She received her undergraduate degree from North Carolina A&T State University.

This group of fellowship recipients marks a milestone year for the University of Arkansas. As of 2014, 104 U of A students have received the prestigious NSF Graduate Research Fellowship.

Six recent graduates –Alexander Nelson, Kaila Pianalto, Preston Scrape, Ryan Shinabery, Rebecca Simpson, and Mariel Williams – and four graduate students – Joseph O’Neill, Sean Salazar, Aaron Shew, and Micah Wyssmann – received honorable mentions.

University of Arkansas students and recent alumni interested in applying for scholarships and fellowships such as the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship should contact the Office of Nationally Competitive Awards at awards@uark.edu or 479-575-3771. More information is available at fellowships.uark.edu.

Contacts

Suzanne McCray, vice provost for enrollment
Director, Office of Nationally Competitive Awards
479-575-4883, smccray@uark.edu

Steve Voorhies, manager of media relations
University Relations
479-575-3583, voorhies@uark.edu

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