If education were a spaceship, Lauren Davis of Clemson University would be launching into the wild blue yonder with three big rockets propelling her upwards.
Davis, a senior bioengineering major, was recently selected for the Astronaut Scholarship, her third major award in less than two years. She previously was named a Beckman Scholar in 2020 and a Goldwater Scholar earlier this year.
Astronaut Scholarships go to college juniors and seniors who are studying STEM topics and intend to “pursue research or advance their field upon completion of their final degree,” according to the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation.
“I am really honored to be welcomed into such a great community so quickly,” Davis said. “Right after the announcement email came, I started receiving information about professional development opportunities and getting involved in a mentorship program.”
Davis said the scholarship will help pay for her senior year tuition. She is among 60 students from 44 universities to receive the scholarship, according to the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation.
The honor comes as Davis wraps up the research she has been conducting as part of the Beckman Scholars Program. The award opened new opportunities for her to extend her research into mesh implants used in hernia repair and pelvic floor surgery. She has been conducting the research under the guidance of Melinda Harman, an associate professor of bioengineering.
Davis, a member of the Honors College, plans to conduct research this fall in cardiac tissue engineering under Agneta Simionescu, an associate professor of bioengineering.
Davis said that after she receives her undergraduate degree in May 2022, she will pursue graduate school and eventually will launch a career in the medical device industry.
“I enjoy the business side of things,” she said. “Making things faster, cheaper and more accessible is my calling.”
Students interested in the Astronaut Scholars or other nationally competitive programs should contact the Office of Major Fellowships at 864-656-9704 or firstname.lastname@example.org
IDEAS magazine highlighted Davis’ work as a Beckman Scholar. Watch the video here to learn more:
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