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LSU Nominates Four Students for Goldwater Scholarship

LSU has nominated four students for the prestigious Barry Goldwater Scholarship, widely considered the most prestigious undergraduate award available to STEM sophomores and juniors. Rachael Coates, Evan Dore, Rohin Gilman, and Noah Smith will compete with students from universities across the country to be named a 2021 Goldwater Scholar.

Goldwater Scholars are awarded one and two-year $7,500 stipends to pursue undergraduate research in the fields of mathematics, the natural sciences, or engineering. To apply for the scholarship, students must demonstrate extensive research experience and submit a research essay that demonstrates their interest and ability in their fields. Four students are selected annually for nomination through an internal competition at LSU.  Goldwater Scholars will be announced Friday March 26, 2021.

Rachael Coates, of Pride, LA, is an Ogden Honors College sophomore studying Biomolecular Chemical Engineering in the LSU College of Engineering.  Coates’ research involves the design of a modular microfluidic device to further the study of fluid shear stress (FSS).  She works with Dr. Adam Melvin in the Cain Department of Chemical Engineering investigating the role of fluid sheer stress on the behavior and phenotypical characteristics circulating tumor cells.  On this experience, she notes, “I learned how to set up and successfully execute an experiment, how to present data to others, how to make figures for a scientific journal, but most importantly, I learned how to fail and how to learn from my failures.”  After graduation, Rachael plans on pursuing a Ph.D. in Cellular and Molecular Biology/Medicine, with the ultimate goal of becoming a medical scientist and a pediatric oncologist.

Evan Dore, of Lake Charles, LA, is an Ogden Honors College junior studying Biochemistry and Psychology in the LSU College of Science.  His scientific research interests are based on questions he has on everyday life, such as “What specific pathways or neural patterns are seen when we feel a certain emotion?” and “What are strategies that can be implemented to better prevent the cause of mental illness?”  In Dr. Karen Maruska’s lab, he conducts research that tests the hypothesis that dominant male cichlids display different neural activation patterns and behaviors when exposed to a chemosensory signal, a visual signal, or a combination of both.  Evan has published research with Dr. Dominique Homberger in the LSU College of Science. After graduation, Evan plans to obtain an M.D./PhD. in Neuroscience and to conduct neurophysiology research. 

Rohin Gilman, of Baton Rouge, LA, is an Ogden Honors College junior studying mathematics with a dual degree in computer science in the LSU College of Science.  “Studying math at LSU has given me the opportunity to explore its various branches, including topics in both applied and pure mathematics,” Rohin says.  “Over the last three years, I have built a foundation that has allowed me to make significant progress on my research projects.” His research stems from his interest in numerical methods. He has conducted research that demonstrates how the Chernoff Product Formula can be used to approximate solutions of initial value problems for fully non-linear differential equations, using Koopman’s global linearization approach. Rohin conducts his research under Dr. Frank Neubrander.  After graduation, Rohin plans to pursue a Ph.D. in mathematics and conduct research while teaching at the university level.

Noah Smith, of Birmingham, AL, is an Ogden Honors College junior studying chemical engineering in the LSU College of Engineering. Smith’s research essay focuses on the application of silicon nanostructures and thin film noble-transition alloy deposition to generate fuels and develop novel photovoltaic solar systems. The purpose of his research is to explore new avenues in selective, solar-driven conversion by using sunlight, nano-structures, and noble-transition alloys, while providing the path to reduce carbon emissions globally.   This research was conducted under Dr. Kevin McPeak. “This work is the second large research project I have undertaken in my time as an undergraduate,” Noah says. “I hope to involve myself in research focused on sustainability and novel forms of renewable energy throughout my career.” After graduation, Noah plans to pursue a Ph.D. in chemical engineering, teach at the university level, conduct research across multiple STEM fields, and mentor students to be successful researchers.


The Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation

 Congress established the Barry Goldwater Scholarship in 1986 to honor Senator Barry Goldwater, who served his country for 56 years as a soldier and statesman, including 30 years in the U.S. Senate. The scholarship was designed to alleviate a critical, current and future shortage of highly qualified scientists, mathematicians and engineers.

Ogden Honors College Office of Fellowship Advising

The Ogden Honors College Office of Fellowship Advising advises current students and recent graduates from all colleges at LSU as they apply for prestigious national and international fellowships. Students interested in applying for the Goldwater Scholarship may contact Drew Lamonica Arms, director of the Office of Fellowship Advising, at

LSU College of Science

The LSU College of Science is an international leader in scientific research and instruction, elevating LSU to the highest level of excellence among major research universities in the U.S. and abroad. The college consists of five academic departments including biological sciences, chemistry, geology & geophysics, mathematics, and physics & astronomy, and the LSU Museum of Natural Science. Seven major fields of study and more than 20 concentrations are available to LSU students interested in pursuing a science major at LSU. College of Science students make up nearly half of LSU’s top graduates. For more information on LSU’s College of Science, visit

LSU College of Engineering

Founded in 1908, the LSU College of Engineering offers 11 undergraduate degree programs and confers approximately 650 bachelor’s degrees per year, ranking it in the top 10 percent nationally for graduates. Faculty members engage in education, research, and commercialization with a strategic focus on research indigenous to Louisiana: energy, manufacturing, natural & built infrastructure, computation and biotechnology. For more information about LSU's College of Engineering visit