Two University of Minnesota juniors awarded 2021 Goldwater Scholarships
Two juniors in the University Honors Program at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities have been recognized as Goldwater Scholars by the Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation. Hannah Bodmer and Brian Carrick will receive scholarships worth up to $7,500 for their senior years. This prestigious, competitive scholarship is awarded annually to outstanding sophomores and juniors who intend to pursue research-oriented careers in mathematics, the natural sciences, and engineering. This year 410 students were recognized as Goldwater Scholars out of approximately 1,000 nominees from 438 colleges and universities nationwide.
Hannah Bodmer of Chanhassen has been interested in insects for as long as she can remember. In high school she had the opportunity to participate in a study of leaf-cutter ants in Costa Rica, and she has continued to explore entomology as a biology major in the College of Biological Sciences. For two years she has crisscrossed the state, collecting corn rootworm beetles from farmers’ fields in western counties and aquatic flies from streams in the southeast. In the summers, Bodmer has worked in entomology professor Kenneth Ostlie’s lab investigating the development of pesticide resistance in corn rootworm. During the winters she has been studying winter-active aquatic flies with Professor Leonard Ferrington to assess the impact of temperature change on longevity and behavior.
She has presented on her research at the annual meeting of the Society for Freshwater Science, and it will form the basis of her Honors thesis. A German language minor, Bodmer was awarded a summer research internship by the German Academic Exchange to conduct research on riparian spiders at the University of Konstanz last summer. Prevented from traveling by the pandemic, she hopes to complete the opportunity this year. After graduation, she plans to complete a PhD in Entomology and teach and conduct research on environmental factors that drive evolutionary adaptation in insects.
Last summer, Brian Carrick, a junior chemistry and chemical engineering major from Red Wing had a Heisig/Gleysteen fellowship from the Department of Chemistry and an Undergraduate Research Opportunities award but no access to a lab. The COVID-19 pandemic had closed the lab of Regents Professor Timothy Lodge, where Carrick had been investigating the dispersal of polymers in ionic liquids. One of his projects — an approximation of the binodal curve for polybenzyl methacrylate in an ionic liquid — produced results challenging an accepted solution theory and won a top prize for student research when presented at the national conference of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers. But without access to a lab, he couldn’t move on to the next stage of his planned work, so he reimagined the work to be speculating about the implications and possibilities of his research and hypothesizing a new technique for triggering phase separation of polymer solutions.
In addition to his research, Carrick is a tutor for calculus and organic chemistry on campus, has volunteered as a STEM camp leader with Mid-Continent Oceanographic Institute, and is a leader of the campus chapters of AICHE and the Tau Beta Pi honor society. He plans to complete a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering and lead a polymer research group to produce functionalized polymeric materials from renewable feedstocks and explore eco-friendly, catalytic decomposition of plastics.
University of Minnesota, Twin Cities students who are interested in applying for the scholarship in the future may consult the Office of National and International Scholarships by visiting https://honors.umn.edu/scholarships/natschol or by contacting Timothy Jones at [email protected].
For more information on the Goldwater Scholarship, visit https://goldwater.scholarsapply.org/.