Two Ohio University students have been selected as 2019 Barry M. Goldwater Scholars. Junior Mahmoud Ramadan and sophomore Edward Drabold were both recognized for their research on carbon capture. The Goldwater Scholarship is considered the most prestigious national award for undergraduate STEM research.
Ramadan and Drabold are two of the 496 college students from across the United States who will receive the scholarship, which covers the cost of tuition, fees, books, room, and board up to a maximum of $7,500. Both said they were grateful the scholarship will support them as they continue research related to pressing environmental challenges.
“When I first got the email stating that I received the Goldwater Scholarship, I was extremely thrilled and surprised,” said Ramadan. “Receiving the scholarship has definitely reaffirmed my desire to pursue a Ph.D. in chemical engineering, with the aim of one day leading a research group that investigates methods to control pollution outputs through carbon capture and reduction. It feels great to know that all the work I have put in is being recognized.”
Ramadan is a junior chemical engineering major with minors in chemistry and math. His research on carbon capture and bimetallic nanoparticles seeks to mitigate climate change through engineering. His research mentors include Madhivanan Muthuvel, M. Toufiq Reza, Tingyue Gu and Sumit Sharma at Ohio University; and Giannis Mpourmpakis at University of Pittsburgh. Ramadan also wishes to thank Monica Burdick, Chris Lewis, Roxanne Male’-Brune, and Valerie Young for their support with his application.
“I was surprised to win this award and very honored,” said Drabold. “I am grateful for the talented people who have invested in me since I was young, especially Elizabeth Gierlowski-Kordesch, who helped me with science fair in elementary and middle school, and who eventually connected me with David Bayless, my primary research mentor in college. I look forward to working with a multidisciplinary group of talented people in academia and industry and to giving back to the region.”
Drabold is a sophomore HTC environmental studies major. His research on carbon capture and microalgae is designed to address carbon emissions in the industrial manufacturing sector, including here in Ohio. In addition to Bayless, his research mentors include M. Toufiq Reza, Daniel Sellars, Morgan Vis, and Geoff Buckley at Ohio University; and Joel Agner at Honda R&D Americas.
“I am incredibly proud of both of these students for their drive and desire to improve our world through scientific research,” Ohio University President M. Duane Nellis said. “The Goldwater Scholarship, along with our talented faculty, will help them excel as they pursue new and exciting ways to combat pollution and mitigate climate change.”
Students interested in learning more about the Goldwater Scholarship are encouraged to visit goldwater.scholarsapply.org and to contact either Monica Burdick, Associate Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and Ohio University’s Goldwater committee chair, or Chris Lewis, Director of the Office of Nationally Competitive Awards.
OHIO had a Goldwater Scholar winner and an honorable mention in 2018, and two honorable mentions in 2017. This is the first time OHIO has had multiple winners since three students earned the scholarship in 2008.