2021 Goldwater Scholarship Nominees
Congratulations to Hannah Boyce, ChE’22, Spencer Lake Jacobs-Skolik, EE’22, and Cameron Young, ChE/COS’22, who are three of the four students nominated as the most distinguished undergraduate scientists and engineers for the 2021 Barry Goldwater Scholarship. The Barry Goldwater Scholarship is a highly competitive, merit-based award for outstanding students in mathematics, the natural sciences, and engineering who are interested in pursuing careers in research. The premier award for undergraduate students in STEM fields, the scholarship was established by Congress in 1986 to honor Senator Barry Goldwater, who showed a keen interest in science and technology during his 30 years in the U.S. Senate.
Hannah Boyce COE’22
Hannah Boyce’s experiences as a chemical engineering researcher and a woman in STEM have inspired her twin professional goals: to innovate drug delivery mechanisms for more targeted treatment of chronic diseases and to improve engineering education at all levels so that underrepresented students in STEM disciplines are better prepared and better supported. In the lab of Northeastern professor Debra Auguste, Hannah studied the migration of the triple negative breast cancer line MDA-MB-231, which sparked her interest in drug delivery. She then investigated tumor associated microhpages at Iowa State University, melanin nanoparticles at Northwestern University, the effect of carbon monoxide on inflammation at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, a drug release assay at Alivio Therapeutics, and currently, scalable production and isolation of extracellular vesicles at ETH Zurich. Meanwhile, Hannah’s research on the benefits of supplemental instruction for women in engineering resulted in several presentations and publications on that topic. Hannah aspires to a PhD in chemical engineering and a career as a professor.
Spencer Lake Jacobs-Skolik COE’22
Lake Jacobs-Skolik aims to improve the lives of people with neurological diseases by advancing research and treatment at every level: from investigating the basic electrophysiological biomarkers of these conditions, to developing neurostimulation-based interventional measures, to prototyping and testing rehabilitative and assistive devices based on this knowledge. Lake discovered the practical implications of his work in coding and signal processing through his work with Enabling Engineering, a Northeastern student-led group that designs and builds devices to empower individuals with disabilities. His research experiences have included work on advanced prosthetic hands, analysis of M-wave and Hoffman reflex behavior to elucidate the locus of motor deficits, prediction of muscle activation for motor control, and the development of a novel machine learning algorithm to detect the features of the cortical silent period, a distinctive EMG characteristic often used to diagnose neuromotor disorders. Lake plans to pursue an MD/PhD specializing in electrodiagnostic medical research so that he can lead the translation of basic research into clinical applications for patients with neurological conditions.
Cameron Young COE/COS’22
Cameron Young aims to be at the forefront of personalized medicine, pioneering the next generation of cancer therapeutics that will be customized to each patient’s unique disease physiology. In the Northeastern lab of Professor Ambika Bajpayee, Cameron has studied the role of crosslinks called advanced glycation end-products (AGEs) in the development of osteoarthritis. At Brigham and Women’s Hospital, meanwhile, Cameron has been involved in a number of projects, including researching ways to protect mucosal tissue from damage during radiotherapy; developing a machine learning model to predict drug-transporter interactions in the gastrointestinal tract; and investigating therapeutic candidates for acute respiratory distress syndrome. Currently, Cameron is managing the database of over 1,700 patient case reports of acute COVID-19 infection at Boston Children’s Hospital as part of a CDC-funded sentinel surveillance study at over 70 pediatric hospitals. In order to take the latest breakthroughs from the bench-top to the bedside, Cameron aspires to earn an MD/PhD and run a laboratory at an academic teaching hospital.