Computer science student named 2012 Goldwater Scholar

Curtis Northcutt, a member of the Class of 2013, has been named a 2012 Goldwater Scholar. Each year, Vanderbilt is given the opportunity to nominate up to four outstanding sophomore and junior students in the math, science and engineering fields. Competition for the award is fierce: 282 scholars were selected on the basis of academic merit this year from a field of 1,123 students.


Northcutt plans to earn a Ph.D. in computer science and hopes to develop theoretical, mathematical and algorithmic approaches to computer science and teach as a professor at a university. He has held undergraduate research positions at NASA, General Electric and the universities of Notre Dame and Kentucky. In 2011,

Northcutt was selected by the Vanderbilt School of Engineering for the James Geddes Memorial Scholarship. He also holds the distinction of being a Kentucky Colonel – the highest civilian honor awarded by the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

The Goldwater Foundation is a federally endowed agency established by Public Law 99-661 on Nov. 14, 1986. The scholarship program, which honors the late Sen. Barry M. Goldwater, was designed to foster and encourage outstanding students to pursue careers in the fields of mathematics, the natural sciences and engineering.

Each scholarship provides up to $7,500 for the scholar’s junior or senior year. The Goldwater Scholarship is the premier undergraduate award of its type in these fields.


Biomedical engineering student receives Goldwater honorable mention


Chelsea Stowell, a member of the Class of 2013, has received a Goldwater Scholar honorable mention. Stowell plans to earn a Ph.D. in biomedical engineering, conducting applied research in industry on implantable active medical devices and drug delivery systems.

She is a Cornelius Vanderbilt Scholar who has worked in the lab of W.D. Merryman, assistant professor of biomedical engineering, and held a summer undergraduate research position at the University of Illinois-Chicago involving nanotechnology and drug delivery systems.