Scholarship and honorable mention recognized students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics

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Friday, April 4, 2014

University of Iowa junior Liam Hovey has received a 2014 Goldwater Scholarship, the premier undergraduate award for students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

Portrait of Liam Hovey
Liam Hovey

The Stillwater, Minn., native is majoring in chemistry and physics with a minor in mathematics, all fields in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. He also is a student in the UI Honors Program.

Hovey is currently conducting research on calcium signaling and ion channel regulation with a team led by Madeline Shea, professor of biochemistry in Carver College of Medicine. She says she was thrilled to hear about Hovey's honor, but wasn't surprised.

“Liam has the ability to make significant contributions to original and independent research in the United States," Shea says. "The Goldwater Foundation is making a wise investment in a young scientist who possesses the passion and skill required to work at the edge of innovative and cross-disciplinary fields.”

Hovey, who will receive up to $7,500 in funding for tuition, fees, books, and room and board, plans to pursue a doctoral degree and perform research in structural biology and electrophysiology with an emphasis in pharmacological applications.

Congress established the Goldwater Scholarship in 1986 to honor Senator Barry M. Goldwater, and to challenge and support outstanding young scholar-researchers. Find a full list of 2014 Goldwater Scholars on the Goldwater Foundation website.

Portrait of Alexandra Bartlett
Alexandra Bartlett

The foundation also recognized UI sophomore Alexandra Bartlett with an honorable mention. The Clive, Iowa, native is pursuing degrees in chemical engineering and finance, and conducting research with Allan Guymon, professor of chemical and biochemical engineering, studying polymer scaffolds that may advance stem-cell treatments for age-related macular degeneration.

Bartlett plans to continue exploring nanotechnology throughout her undergraduate career and beyond, hoping to promote cross-disciplinary solutions to address genetic diseases.

Hovey and Bartlett worked with UI Honors Program fellowships director Kelly Thornburg, the university's Undergraduate Fellowships Committee, and a supportive community of faculty and research mentors to develop their application materials.

Thornburg and colleagues actively encourage other students to apply for Goldwater Scholarships. Learn more on the Honors Program website or by contacting Thornburg directly at 319-335-1874 or at