|The smartest room on campus: two Goldwater winners
RELEASED: March 31, 2005
DANVILLE, KYBrian Grieb, a Centre College sophomore from Louisville, has won a prestigious Goldwater Scholarship, the premier honor for undergraduates majoring in the sciences, mathematics or engineering.
In winning the scholarship, which pays up to $15,000 toward tuition, room and board, fees and books over the next two years, Grieb follows in the footsteps of his roommate, Tony Stefater, also from Louisville, who won a Goldwater last year, when he too was only a sophomore. Because the scholarships emphasize research experience, winning one as a sophomore is highly unusual.
Grieb was the only student from a Kentucky college to win a Goldwater scholarship this year, as was Stefater last year. Centre College has had nine Goldwater scholarship winners since 1991, and six winners in the last eight years.
Congress established the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program, which administers the Goldwater Scholarships, in1986 in honor of Barry M. Goldwater, the long-serving senator from Arizona and former presidential candidate. The program seeks to provide a continuing source of highly qualified scientists, mathematicians and engineers by awarding scholarships to college students who intend to pursue careers in these fields.
Grieb collaborated in a "green" chemistry research project with Joe Workman, associate professor of chemistry. The two used a water-based method to remove the pollutant sulfur from crude oil as it is processed into gasoline. Sulfur in gasoline is a major source of air pollution, and the way it is currently removed will not meet impending environmental regulations.
"There are few desulfurization methods that are environmentally friendly," says Grieb. "The most effective way to remove the sulfur is to use a strong acid. Our method is water-based, using hydrogen peroxide, that you might have in a first-aid kit, and a metal catalyst."
Grieb's presentation on the research he did with Workman won first place for undergraduate inorganic or bioinorganic research at a regional meeting of the American Chemical Society.
"Brian had virtually no research experience prior to last summer," says Workman, "and he certainly had never seen the type of chemistry that our research was based on. He quickly learned a great deal of complicated chemistry and research techniques. He achieved significant results in a very short time. The Goldwater Scholarship is a fitting recognition of his achievements in the classroom, his demonstrated research aptitude and his potential to become a leader in science."
Grieb's extracurricular activities include coaching a team of 10-year-olds in soccer and serving as a resident assistant and a member of the Colonel Corps, students who assist the admission office by conducting campus tours as well as hosting lunches and overnight stays for prospective students.
- end -
Founded in 1819, Centre College is ranked among the U.S. News top 50 national liberal arts colleges. Centre alumni, known for their nation-leading loyalty in annual financial support, include two U.S. vice presidents and two Supreme Court justices. For more, visit http://www.centre.edu/web/elevatorspeech/
For news archives go to http://www.centre.edu/web/news/newsarchive.html.
600 W. Walnut Street
Danville, KY 40422
Public Information Coordinator: Telephone 859-238-5714