Four juniors at the University of Pennsylvania have been selected as Goldwater Scholars by the Barry Goldwater Scholarship & Excellence in Education Foundation, which provides scholarships of as much as $7,500 to undergraduate students interested in pursuing research careers in the natural sciences, mathematics, or engineering.
Each year Penn’s Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships (CURF) nominates four students for the award and provides advising. The 2020 Goldwater Scholars from Penn are Regina Fairbanks from Broomall, Pennsylvania; Samuel Goldstein from Jacksonville, Florida; Adam Konkol from Union Beach, New Jersey; and Shreya Parchure, from Fremont, California.
Penn has had 47 recipients of the scholarship since Congress established the foundation in 1986 to honor the work of U.S. Sen. Barry Goldwater.
Regina Fairbanks is a biology major in the School of Arts and Sciences. She has been working in the Levine Lab, where she studies reproductive arrest in fruit flies. As a Penn Museum Fellow, Fairbanks has been working in the Center for the Analysis of Archaeological Materials analyzing botanical remains from an archaeological site in Israel to understand agricultural practices in the Early Bronze Age. She previously was an National Science Foundation research intern at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in the botany department. She is also a Benjamin Franklin Scholar. Fairbanks intends to pursue a Ph.D. in biology, conduct research using molecular approaches at a natural history museum, and curate a museum collection.
Samuel Goldstein is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in physics and mathematics and a master’s degree in physics in the School of Arts and Sciences. He has research experience with the U.S. Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory’s Cosmology Group and Penn’s High Energy Physics Group. Goldstein is currently researching non-linear galaxy bias in preparation for the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope. He is also a CURF Research Peer Advisor and a tutor. He intends to pursue a Ph.D. in physics and then teach at a university and conduct research in cosmology.
Adam Konkol is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry, biophysics, and physics and a master’s degree in physics in the School of Arts and Sciences. He has worked with biology Professor Doris Wagner on factors involved in plant genetic regulation and Assistant Professor Eleni Katifori on complex adaptive networks in biology. A recipient of the Vagelos Challenge Award, Konkol’s current work focuses on vascular development on the surface of the brain, as well as the study of tidal river deltas. Konkol has also led physics labs and weekend organic chemistry workshops. He is training to become a speaking coach with Communication Within the Curriculum at Penn and aims to create physics-based community outreach programs. He intends to pursue a Ph.D. in physics.
Shreya Parchure is a bioengineering major in the School of Engineering and Applied Science. She has been working with Roy Hamilton who directs the Laboratory for Cognition and Neural Stimulation in the Perelman School of Medicine, characterizing a form of non-invasive brain stimulation for use in neurorehabilitation after stroke. The work with Hamilton is through a Faculty Mentoring Undergraduate Research grant. She also is creating a cardiac surgical device with support from Penn Health-Tech. She is a Rachleff Scholar, and a recipient of a Vagelos Undergraduate Research Grant. As a United Nations Millennium Fellow, Parchure led a social-impact initiative expanding her work with Penn’s Intercultural Leadership Program. She serves as a CURF Research Peer Advisor and as co-editor-in-chief of the Penn Bioethics Journal. She intends to pursue an M.D./Ph.D. in neuroengineering and conduct medical research.