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April 16: Three Carnegie Mellon Sophomores Earn Barry Goldwater Scholarships


Jocelyn Duffy                       

Amy Pavlak

Three Carnegie Mellon Sophomores
Earn Barry M. Goldwater Scholarships

Andrew DeYoung PITTSBURGH—Three Carnegie Mellon University students have received Barry M. Goldwater Scholarships to encourage their pursuit of careers in the natural sciences. Andrew David DeYoung, Lawrence D. Jesper and Samuel M. Kim are three of 321 sophomores and juniors nationwide chosen from more than 1,000 nominations to receive scholarships this year.

Colleges and universities can submit up to four nominations annually for these awards, and all of Carnegie Mellon's nominees were recognized. Carmeline Joan Dsilva, a chemical engineering major, received an honorable mention citation.
"The strength of the candidate pool this year was exceptional," said Paul Fowler, Carnegie Mellon's associate dean of Student Affairs. "The fact that all four nominees were sophomores is a testament to how well our students, even within two years of their matriculation, can acquire phenomenal research and leadership experiences that allow them to compete with the brightest students in the country."

Lawrence Jesper DeYoung, a sophomore from Export, Pa., is majoring in chemistry. In the summer of 2007, he conducted research in theoretical chemistry, which he plans to continue this summer. Specifically, DeYoung uses sophisticated computer software to model fluorescent dyes to predict which chemical structures produce the most desirable dye properties. With these predictions in hand, synthetic chemists can then produce and test the dyes in the lab. After completing his bachelor's degree, DeYoung plans to pursue a Ph.D. in theoretical chemistry.

A sophomore computer science major from Dallas, Texas, Jesper is interested in an academic career in computational biology, with plans to use machine learning to better understand biological processes. As part of his scholarship application, he submitted a research proposal to use machine learning to analyze how modifications to a specific protein would affect how that protein folded.

Samuel Kim Kim, a sophomore biological sciences major from Wyckoff, N.J., is working with biological sciences faculty members to develop novel molecular biosensor technology that will monitor dynamic changes occurring within cells. Kim is producing and studying the structure of a key component of the biosensor, research that he plans to continue this summer. His career goal is to obtain an advanced degree and to continue research in biochemistry and structural biology. 

Goldwater Scholars receive one- and two-year scholarships up to a maximum of $7,500 per year for tuition, fees, books, and room and board. The scholarships are also a stepping-stone for future support for their research careers, according to the foundation. Past Goldwater Scholars have garnered prestigious post-graduate fellowships, including the Rhodes Scholarship, Marshall Award and numerous other distinguished honors.   

The Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation was created to encourage outstanding students to pursue careers in mathematics, the natural sciences, or engineering and to foster excellence in those fields. It was authorized by the United States Congress in 1986 to honor Senator Barry M. Goldwater, and to foster and encourage excellence in science and mathematics. For more information, visit

Pictured from top to bottom are Andrew DeYoung, Lawrence Jesper and Samuel Kim.