Two UW-Madison students named Goldwater Scholars; two receive honorable mentions

April 17, 2018 By Doug Erickson

From left to right, UW–Madison undergraduates Roger Waleffe, Jason Mohoney, Soren Rozema and Nathan Wang, are pictured at the Wisconsin Institute for Discovery. Waleffe and Wang are recipients of the 2018 Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship for undergraduate excellence in the sciences, and Mohoney and Rozema won honorable mentions. Photo: Bryce Richter

Two University of Wisconsin–Madison students have been awarded prestigious Barry Goldwater Scholarships for undergraduate excellence in the sciences, and two more were named honorable mentions.

The Goldwater Scholarship is considered the most prestigious undergraduate scholarship in the natural sciences, mathematics and engineering in America.

Of the 1,280 college sophomores and juniors nominated this year from across the country, 211 were named Goldwater Scholars and 281were chosen as honorable mentions.

UW-Madison’s 2018 Goldwater Scholars are:

  • Roger Waleffe, a junior from Middleton, Wisconsin. Waleffe is majoring in applied math, engineering and physics (AMEP) and computer sciences. His research interests include fundamental plasma physics and terrestrial fusion and using machine learning to solve physical problems. He plans to pursue a doctorate in plasma physics.
  • Nathan Wang, a junior from Madison, Wisconsin. Wang is majoring in chemical engineering with a certificate in computer sciences. His research interests include investigating different strategies for drug delivery and developing novel pharmaceuticals using computational and experimental approaches. He plans to pursue a doctorate in chemical and biological engineering.

For winners who are juniors, the Goldwater Scholarship covers one year of tuition, fees, books, and room and board up to a maximum of $7,500. Sophomore winners are eligible for two years of paid expenses, up to a maximum of $7,500 per year.

UW-Madison’s 2018 Goldwater honorable mentions are:

  • Jason Mohoney, a junior from Madison, Wisconsin. Mohoney is majoring in applied math, engineering and physics (AMEP) and computer sciences. His research interests include nuclear fusion and artificial intelligence. He plans to pursue a doctorate in plasma physics.
  • Soren Rozema, a junior from Cross Plains, Wisconsin. Rozema is majoring in pharmacology, toxicology and chemistry. His research interests include the development of anti-parasitic agents and a novel transformation that would produce compounds with broad-spectrum pharmacologic activity. He plans to pursue a doctorate in chemistry.

Goldwater Scholars from UW–Madison have historically received other prestigious awards later in their academic careers. Bill Mulligan, a 2015 Goldwater Scholar, was a finalist for both the Rhodes and Marshall scholarships. Drew Birrenkott, a 2013 Goldwater Scholar, received a Rhodes Scholarship. Joshua Shutter, a fellow 2013 Scholar, received a Churchill Scholarship.

Congress established the Barry Goldwater Scholarship & Excellence in Education Foundation in 1986. Goldwater served in the U.S. Senate for over 30 years and challenged Lyndon B. Johnson for the presidency in 1964. The foundation aims to develop highly qualified scientists, engineers and mathematicians.