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University of Iowa News Release


April 6, 2009

UI honors student Maria Drout receives prestigious Goldwater Scholarship

Maria Drout, a UI Honors Program student and junior physics and astronomy major in the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLAS), has been awarded a 2009 Goldwater Scholarship. The one-year scholarship will cover the cost of tuition, fees, books, and room and board up to a maximum of $7,500 per year.

Drout, from Eau Claire, Wis., is a researcher working with Cornelia Lang, assistant professor of physics and astronomy in CLAS, on Galactic Center surveys and analysis. She also collaborates with Phil Massey with the Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Ariz. on massive star evolution research.

Drout plans to get her doctorate in astrophysics, conduct research in astronomical sciences and develop outreach programs to encourage students to pursue careers in the sciences.

The 2009 scholarship was awarded to 278 students nationally and is administered by the federally endowed Goldwater Foundation, which was named in honor of the late U.S. Sen. Barry M. Goldwater. The foundation seeks to encourage outstanding students to pursue careers in mathematics, the natural sciences and engineering, and the scholarship is considered the premier undergraduate award of its type in these fields.

Scholars are selected on the basis of academic merit from a field of mathematics, science and engineering students who are nominated by the faculties of colleges and universities. At the UI, the University Honors Program selects four nominees based on the students' academic achievements and participation in research. The scholarships cover either one or two years.

Among this year's Goldwater Scholars nationally, 163 are men, 115 are women and virtually all of the recipients have indicated that they want to obtain a doctorate. Thirty of the scholars are mathematics majors, 51 are majoring in engineering, 190 are science majors and seven are in majors related to computer science. Many of the scholars have dual majors in a variety of mathematics, science, engineering and computer disciplines.

For a full list of 2008 Goldwater Scholars visit

For more information on the UI Honors Program see

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500

MEDIA CONTACTS: Andrea Beloy, UI Honors Program, 319-335-1874,; Lois J. Gray, University News Services, 319-384-0077,