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Hendrix Student Named National Goldwater Scholar

EricaSiebrasse only private college student in Arkansas to receive the award

CONWAY, Ark. – Hendrix College student Erica A. Siebrasse was named a Goldwater Scholar earlier this week by the Board of Trustees of the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation. Siebrasse, a Biochemistry and Molecular Biology major at Hendrix, was selected from a field of more than 1,100 mathematics, science and engineering students nominated from throughout the country.

A native of Parsons, Kan., Siebrasse plans to utilize the award to enhance her studies in the field of genetics. She receive the award after being nominated by Hendrix College faculty, completing official application procedures, and submitting an essay titled “Novel functional interactions between histones and factors involved in transcription regulation.” Applicants were required to submit an essay describing a problem in their field of study, along with proposing research ideas that would have a significant impact on the problem.

Siebrasse credited Hendrix professor Dr. Andrea Duina, along with the support from her parents, for her academic achievement.

“Most undergraduates do not have the opportunity to do the type of work I’m doing at Hendrix, especially as a sophomore,” Siebrasse said. “My classes are helping me decide what career I would like to pursue and giving me ample preparation for the rigors of grad school.

“My mom and dad are my role models,” she added. “They’ve both supported me in everything I’ve wanted to do since I was little. I wouldn’t be receiving this award or doing so well in general if it weren’t for their love and support.”

The Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program was established by Congress in 1986 to honor Senator Barry M. Goldwater, who served his country for 56 years as a soldier and statesman, including 30 years of service in the U.S. Senate. The purpose of the Foundation is to provide a continuing source of highly qualified scientists, mathematicians, and engineers by awarding scholarships to college students who intend to pursue careers in these fields.

Mrs. Peggy Goldwater Clay, Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation, announced the awarding of 317 scholarships for the 2007-2008 academic year to undergraduate sophomores and juniors from the United States. Siebrasse was one of four in Arkansas to receive the award – and the only private college student to be named a Goldwater Scholar.

The scholarships will cover the cost of tuition, fees, books, and room and board up to a maximum of $7,500 per year. In its 19-year history, the Foundation has awarded 5,202 scholarships worth approximately $51 million. The Trustees plan to award about three hundred scholarships nationally for the 2008-2009 academic year.

Additionally, three Hendrix students received Honorable Mention as Goldwater Scholars. They are:

  • Adam M. Jacobs, a physics and computer science major from Benton.
  • Neil H. Kopper, a physics major from Conway.
  • Kelly A. Zalocusky, a biology and psychology major from Belleville, Ill.

Hendrix, founded in 1876, is a selective, residential, undergraduate liberal arts college emphasizing experiential learning in a demanding yet supportive environment. Selected this year by the Princeton Review as the nation's No. 4 "best value" college, Hendrix is a member of Project Pericles®, an organization that promotes civic engagement among college students. Hendrix has been affiliated with the United Methodist Church since 1884.