Two University of Richmond Students Named Goldwater Scholars

April 5, 2021

UNIVERSITY OF RICHMOND —  Two University of Richmond students have received Goldwater scholarships, the preeminent undergraduate award in science and math.

This year, 410 Goldwater scholars were selected on the basis of academic merit from a field of nearly 1,300 students nominated by 438 colleges and universities nationwide.

The recipients include:
Nicolas Ferree, a sophomore physics and mathematics double major from Midlothian, Virginia. Ferree’s research mentors are physics professor Ted Bunn and mathematics professor Jim Davis. Ferree, who aspires to become an astronaut, plans to pursue a Ph.D. in astrophysics and hopes to conduct research in cosmology and astrophysics at a NASA research facility.

Julia Vidlak, a junior chemistry major from Williamsburg, Virginia. Vidlak is being mentored by chemistry professor Miles Johnson, a UR alum who received a Goldwater award when he was an undergraduate. Vidlak plans to obtain an MD-PhD degree with a Ph.D. in biochemistry and molecular biology. She aspires to study pediatric cancer treatments as a physician-scientist at an academic medical institution. 

“We are so proud of Nic and Julia, who have been recognized among a large, competitive, and talented candidate pool,” said Dana Kuchem, director of the Office of Scholars and Fellowships. “These awards highlight both the academic caliber of these students and UR’s commitment to faculty-mentored undergraduate research.”

Including these awards, UR has had 32 Goldwater Scholars since the program’s inception in 1986.

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