Senior, Midlothian, Virginia
Major: Biology in the College of Science and Technology
Campus Involvement: College of Science and Technology Building Committee Student Representative, Human Anatomy and Physiology Teaching Assistant, Undergraduate student researcher
As a recipient of the nation’s highest undergraduate science honor, the 2011 Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship, Brandon Newmyer is grateful to Radford University and his faculty mentor, Dr. Mark Cline, for realizing his potential and giving him opportunities to conduct research as an undergraduate student.
“While my classroom experiences have provided me with an essential backbone of science knowledge, the hands-on learning opportunities I have been provided in Dr. Cline's lab have been essential for me,” said Newmyer. “I probably wouldn’t have had these experiences as an undergraduate at a larger school.”
The Goldwater Scholarship is considered the most prestigious honor in the U.S. conferred upon undergraduate students studying the sciences. In 1986, the program was established by the United States Congress in honor of former U.S. Senator Barry M. Goldwater to provide a continuing source of highly qualified scientists, mathematicians, and engineers by awarding scholarships to students who intend to pursue careers in these fields. Competition for the award is intense. Other institutions represented in the list of this year's recipients were Yale, Harvard, and the University of Virginia.
Newmyer’s work as an undergraduate researcher at Radford made him an ideal candidate for the award – and also helped him prepare for a career in the sciences.
“I had no idea what I wanted to do with my future when I started doing research but I have developed career goals and passions through taking advantage of the opportunities here,” he said. “The professors at Radford University truly care about your success; they are more than willing to work with you every step of the way to ensure you reach your potential.”
Preparing to graduate this spring, graduate school is on the horizon.
“A master’s degree would offer me a wide range of career options, from veterinarian to clinical researcher, to academia,” said Newmyer. “I feel well prepared for my future.”