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Two Earn Goldwater Honorable Mention

Posted on Thursday, June 11, 2009

Continuing a trend of excellence within the HWS science departments, Travis Blum '10 and Robert Hendry '10 have each received a 2009 Honorable Mention by the Barry M. Goldwater national foundation.

The Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship is among the nation's top undergraduate science scholarships. It was established in 1986 to honor Senator Barry M. Goldwater, who devoted 56 years to his country as a soldier and statesman, including 30 years of service in the U.S. Senate. Many Goldwater scholars go on to garner the attention of prestigious post-graduate fellowship programs. Recent Goldwater scholars have been awarded 70 Rhodes Scholarships, 94 Marshall Awards (8 of the 40 awarded in the United States in 2008), and numerous other distinguished fellowships.

Blum is a biochemistry major and environmental studies minor and has done a wide range of laboratory research with Kristy Kenyon, assistant professor of biology. He received the Honorable Mention from the Goldwater foundation for his research that sought to determine the means through which cells achieve regulation of the transcription factor sine oculis, a gene which produces a protein that is essential for normal eye development in fruit flies. Blum worked to determine the sites in each protein that are essential for association, and thereby determine how each protein may be able to modify the activity of the other.

This summer, he is working with Justin Miller, assistant professor of chemistry, on an organic chemistry experiment on solid-phase synthesis of the potential anti-cancer compound spiruchostatin A. In July, he will present a poster on major research aimed at understanding the molecular genetics involved in the development of moth antennae at the National Conference of the Society for Developmental Biology in San Francisco and, in August, he will travel with Miller to Washington, D.C. for the annual American Chemical Society Conference.

After completing his undergraduate career, Blum plans to attend graduate school to obtain a Ph.D in organic chemistry, and seeks to enter the field of academia as a researcher or university professor.

A computer science major with a specialization in hardware engineering, Hendry has already done professional-level research and has completed significant projects in his field.

During the summer of 2007, under the tutelage of Assistant Professor of Math and Computer Science Marc Corliss, Hendry participated in a project to build a complete computer system. Specifically, Hendry designed the instruction set architecture and assembly languages for a high-level computer language and operating system that would be used for instructional purposes. His designs and tools have been used successfully in two computer architecture courses at the Colleges.

The following summer, Hendry worked with the hardware design team of Analog Devices in Wilmington, Mass. There, he worked on creating a tool to automate test simulations for a digital signal processor. The technology he developed has since been used to store and manipulate register information for multiple projects at Analog Devices.

On campus, Hendry is involved with Outdoor Recreation Adventure Program, the HWS Guitar Quartet and has resided in the German theme house. He is a Hobart Dean's Scholar, member of Orange Key, and winner of the Irving Bentsen Prize in Math and Computer Science. Hendry hopes to continue to study, earn his Ph.D. in computer engineering and develop the newest technologies that can improve the human condition.

In total, six Hobart and William Smith Colleges students have been awarded Goldwater Scholarships and three have earned Honorable Mention.  Among them are Julia James '04, who attended Oxford University as a 2004 Rhodes Scholar, and Max Macaluso '06 who was later named a Gates Cambridge Scholar.

The photo features Blum in the chemistry lab.

 


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