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Montana Tech Student Awarded Goldwater Scholarship Honorable Mention


Montana Tech student Macy Ricketts named Goldwater Honorable Mention.Montana Tech student Macy Ricketts, a sophomore majoring in Cellular and Molecular Biology, has been awarded Honorable Mention by the Barry Goldwater Scholarship Foundation.

Macy, from Livingston, Montana, plans to pursue a Ph.D. in Plant Ecology and plans to be a research ecologist and investigate the integrated areas of biochemistry and resource management. “This is a huge honor for me,” noted Ricketts. “It encourages me to continue to pursue my career goals!"  

The 2015 Goldwater Scholars were selected on the basis of academic merit from a field of 1,206 mathematics, science, and engineering students who were nominated by the faculties of colleges and universities nationwide. One hundred forty-five of the Scholars are men, 115 are women, and virtually all intend to obtain a Ph.D. as their degree objective. Thirty-four Scholars are mathematics majors, 154 are science and related majors, 68 are majoring in engineering, and 4 are computer science majors. Many of the Scholars have dual majors in a variety of mathematics, science, engineering, and computer disciplines.

Goldwater Scholars have very impressive academic qualifications that have garnered the attention of prestigious post-graduate fellowship programs. Recent Goldwater Scholars have been awarded 86 Rhodes Scholarships, 123 Marshall Awards, 123 Churchill Scholarships, and numerous other distinguished fellowships such as the National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowships.

Ricketts joins seven Montana Tech students who received the Goldwater Award or Honorable Mention. They are: Jordan Leone (2014, Honorable Mention), Ryan Hensleigh (2014, Honorable Mention), Joe Mitzel (2013), Robert Hark (2012), Chris Dienes (2007), Calley Jones (2000), and Ariane Erickson (2011, Honorable Mention).

Goldwater Scholars have very impressive academic qualifications that have garnered the attention of prestigious post-graduate fellowship programs. Recent Goldwater Scholars have been awarded 80 Rhodes Scholarships, 117 Marshall Awards, 112 Churchill Scholarships, and numerous other distinguished fellowships such as the National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowships.

"This is the fourth year in a row a Montana Tech student has received the Goldwater honor,” said Montana Tech Chancellor Don Blackketter. “I would like to commend Macy and the faculty along with the Montana Tech National Student Awards Committee. This is a great honor for our campus."

Dr. Marisa Pedulla chairs Montana Tech’s National Student Awards Committee (NSAC), which supports Montana Tech students for major national and international scholarships. The mission of NSAC, which was founded in 2006, is to create a campus community that fosters and supports outstanding Montana Tech students throughout their education and to nominate and assist Montana Tech’s top students in the preparation of applications for prestigious National Awards. “Helping Montana Tech’s outstanding undergraduates to realize their potential and be recognized for their accomplishments has been a tremendously rewarding endeavor,” explained Pedulla. “It’s exciting and motivating to work closely with the student nominees and dedicated committee members in the process of preparing applications. Macy’s selection as a Goldwater Honorable Mention is an honor for not only Macy, but the entire Montana Tech community.”

In the past 9 years, Montana Tech’s NSAC has had three Goldwater Scholars and four Goldwater Honorable Mention awards. Two students, Jack Stratton (2009) and Casey Clark (2011), were finalists for the Rhodes Scholarship. Montana Tech 2010 chemistry alum, Cory Sonneman, who is a medical student at Pacific Northwest University College of Osteopathic Medicine, won a National Health Service Corps Scholarship. Joe Mitzel and Ivan Sljivar, a metallurgical engineering alum, won the NAIA Dr. LeRoy Walker Champions of Character Award.

The one and two year scholarships will cover the cost of tuition, fees, books, and room and board up to a maximum of $7,500 per year.

The Goldwater Foundation is a federally endowed agency established by Public Law 99-661 on November 14, 1986. The Scholarship Program honoring Senator Barry Goldwater was designed to foster and encourage outstanding students to pursue careers in the fields of mathematics, the natural sciences, and engineering. The Goldwater Scholarship is the premier undergraduate award of its type in these fields.

Since its first award in 1989, the Foundation has bestowed 7,163 scholarships worth approximately 46 million dollars. The Trustees plan to award about three hundred scholarships for the 2015–2016 academic year.