Scott Archer Mitchell, a junior from Salina, received honorable mention for a Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship, the premier undergraduate award to encourage excellence in science, engineering and mathematics. Mitchell is a chemical engineering major who is simultaneously completing a master’s degree in bioengineering.
Mitchell’s career goals are focused on collaborating with researchers to produce new clinical tools for diagnosis of multiple sclerosis, an autoimmune disease, years before symptoms appear. He plans to earn a medical degree and a doctoral degree specializing in biomedical engineering.
Since his freshman year, Mitchell has been working alongside researchers at KU and at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., in chemistry, pharmaceutical chemistry and bioengineering to create new therapies or diagnostic tools, specifically for cardiovascular diseases and autoimmune diseases. Mitchell’s undergraduate research is specifically investigating the use of nanoparticles for potential therapeutics and engineering molecules for diagnostic tools.
Mitchell is a National Merit Scholar, a Summerfield Scholar and a Dane Hansen Leaders of Tomorrow Scholar (the program is for outstanding high school graduates in 26 northwest Kansas counties and sponsored by the Dane G. Hansen Foundation of Logan). In addition, Mitchell is one of 55 Madison “Al” and Lila Self Engineering Leadership Fellows. The SELF program is sponsored by the School of Engineering for a select group of students with a track record of motivation, leadership and action.
He also received an Institute for Advancing Medical Innovation Fellowship for his research on multiple sclerosis diagnostics from the KU Medical Center. The institute focuses on practice-based training and networking of the next generation of innovators who will advance medical innovations ranging from new drugs, medical devices and drug-medical device combinations. Mitchell is a member of the University Honors Program. He is the son of Mark and Kathi Mitchell and a graduate of Salina High School South.
A second KU student, Logan James Wille, a physics major from Lawrence, won a Goldwater Scholarhip, becoming the 48th KU student to receive a Goldwater scholarship since 1989 when the scholarships were first awarded.
The Goldwater Foundation trustees announced March 30 that 275 scholarships had been awarded for the 2011-12 academic year. The scholarships cover eligible expenses for undergraduate tuition, fees, books and room and board, up to $7,500 annually. Honorable mention is a recognition of excellence.
“I am proud to congratulate Logan and Scott, who represent the best among Kansas’ young scholars and scientists,” said Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little. “Their research focuses on renewable energy and new medical treatments, respectively, which are both areas that have the potential to create prosperity and improve our quality of life.”