Prestigious NSF Fellowships Awarded to Mizzou Students, Alumni

Jordan Bartlebaugh
Senior Jordan Bartlebaugh is one of nine current or former MU students to earn the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship

Mizzou senior Jordan Bartlebaugh says research has defined her undergraduate career. Now, thanks to a fellowship from the National Science Foundation (NSF), she will continue to conduct research following graduation.

Bartlebaugh is one of nine current or former MU students to earn the prestigious NSF Graduate Research Fellowship (GRF), which recognizes outstanding students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics disciplines who are pursing research-based graduate and doctoral degrees.

In addition to the nine awardees, Mizzou had nine honorable mention selections.

“Through research, material in class has been brought to life,” Bartlebaugh adds. “My communication and reasoning skills have been vastly improved and I have been able to travel and learn about research being conducted across the country.”

Bartlebaugh worked in the lab of biological science professor David Setzer as an undergraduate researcher. She will use the funding from the NSF fellowship to pursue a graduate degree in biological sciences at MIT, where she spent last summer as an Amgen Research Scholar.

Anne Marie Ahlvers, Katelyn Benthall and Erica LeMontagne join Bartlebaugh as seniors who will use the NSF GRF to continue their education. Graduate student Kiran Bhattacharyya was also awarded the fellowship.

Benthall will study neurobiology in the molecular and cell biology program at the University of California-Berkeley.

“Conducting research has helped me discover a field that I am passionate about,” Benthall says. “Working alongside others interested in the same ideas as me has been a great way to share thoughts and learn about neurobiology research.”

As an undergraduate researcher, Benthall worked in the lab of biological science professor Andrew McClellan.

“The opportunities for undergraduate students at a research-intensive university to conduct meaningful research with faculty members who are experts in their fields is special,” says Jim Spain, vice provost of undergraduate studies. “These fellowships, and the remarkable students who have earned them, demonstrate the quality of undergraduate research opportunities at Mizzou.”

Four MU alumni were also selected as NSF GRF recipients, including Kaitlyn Faries, a 2008 graduate of Mizzou who will begin graduate school at Washington University in St.Louis next fall.

“With this fellowship, I will be able to spend less time as a teaching assistant and more time focused on research,” says Faries, who earned degrees in biology and chemistry from MU.

Alumni Marc Canellas, Erin Jarvis and Michael McCoy were also awarded the fellowship. Canellas, who is working towards a graduate degree in aerospace engineering at Georgia Tech, has also earned a National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship.

Mizzou’s honorable mention selections were senior Michelle Tang, graduate students Julianna Arntzen, Brittani Bungart, Keala Sato Cummings and Nikolas Wilkinson and alumni Curtis Atkisson, Suni Brito, Timothy Ferguson and Joseph Wittenberg.