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ARCS Foundation scholarships support nine UCSC graduate students

By Tim Stephens

Nine UCSC graduate students have received scholarships worth a total of $100,000 from the Achievement Rewards for College Scientists (ARCS) Foundation for the 2005-06 academic year.

The Northern California chapter of the ARCS Foundation is the most generous provider of annual private awards to the UCSC campus and has provided more than $1 million in scholarships to 197 scholars at UCSC.

This year's ARCS scholars will be recognized at the annual ARCS Foundation Luncheon in San Francisco on Wednesday, October 19. The featured speaker will be Zach W. Hall, president of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine.

The ARCS Foundation, founded in 1958, is a national organization that provides scholarships and fellowships for the country's most promising science, medical, and engineering students. This year's ARCS scholars at UCSC represent the Science Communication Program and the Departments of Astronomy and Astrophysics; Computer Science; Earth Sciences; Ecology and Evolutionary Biology; Environmental Toxicology; Mathematics; and Molecular, Cell, and Developmental Biology. The scholars and their interests are as follows:

  • Elise Ferree, a Ph.D. student in ecology and evolutionary biology, is studying parental care and sexual selection in songbirds.
  • Patrick Ferree is pursuing a Ph.D. in molecular, cell, and developmental biology (and is married to Elise). He is studying the maternal inheritance of the endosymbiont Wolbachia in insects.
  • Adam Glesser, a Ph.D. student in mathematics, is studying the representation theory of finite groups.
  • Cynthia Kern, a graduate student in environmental toxicology, is studying the molecular basis of neurotoxicity in developing organisms, focusing on the effects of early, moderate exposure to manganese.
  • David Lai, a Ph.D. student in astronomy and astrophysics, is investigating the nature of the first stars in the galaxy. He also has a special interest in science education and has taught high school students through a UC summer program.
  • Christen Rowe, a graduate student in Earth sciences, is a structural geologist working to understand the characteristics of a fault zone that enable it to generate earthquakes.
  • Nathan Whitehead, a Ph.D. student in computer science, is studying computer security, focusing on security policies and mechanisms such as virtual machines and type checking.
  • Julie Rehmeyer, a graduate student in the Science Communication Program, has taught at St. John's College in Santa Fe since 1998 in the college's Great Books program.
  • Chandra Shekhar, a graduate student in the Science Communication Program, has a Ph.D. in computer vision from the University of Southern California and has worked as a researcher and a technology entrepreneur.

Since its founding in 1970, the Northern California chapter of the ARCS Foundation has provided support for more than 1,700 scholars attending seven universities in Northern California. Additional information about the foundation is available online.

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