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Case Western Reserve University to offer prestigious Beckman Scholars Program grants for undergraduate researchers

Case Western Reserve University has been selected by the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation to offer valuable research grants and extensive mentorship to undergraduate students in chemistry and the biological sciences.

The university is one of just 12 institutions chosen nationally in 2018 to offer six undergraduate students Beckman Scholars Awards—two each over the next three years.

“This is a very prestigious award, and we are honored to have been selected,” said Donald Feke, Case Western Reserve’s vice provost for undergraduate education and a professor of engineering. “It’s really significant that the university’s investment and efforts to promote undergraduate research is being recognized by this national organization.”

The Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation, of Irvine, California, provides grants to researchers and nonprofit research institutions to promote scientific discoveries—especially work that leads to new research methods, instruments and materials.

The Beckman Scholars Program is a 15-month experience for exceptional undergraduate students, providing continuous support for a mentored research project over two summers and one academic year. Information and the application can be found at: The Beckman Scholars Program.

Each Beckman Scholar is awarded $6,800 per summer and $4,600 for the academic year, said Sheila Pedigo, the university’s director of undergraduate research. Another $2,800 is made available for supplies and travel, including attending a Beckman Foundation symposium, at which students present their research projects.

The application deadline for the first two Beckman Scholar Awards is Feb. 15. Recipients will be selected in April and start the program this summer.

Applicants must be rising second- or third-year students majoring in biology, chemistry, biochemistry, nutrition, biomedical engineering or chemical and biomolecular engineering. Students must have previous research experience.

“The significant mentoring experience students will receive as part of the Beckman Scholars Program will help them reach the next level of their research,” Feke said.

Each year, the foundation reviews information about institutions nationally and identifies colleges and universities to receive Beckman Scholars Program application invitations.

Along with Case Western Reserve, 2018 award institutions include: College of William and Mary, Haverford College, Hope College, Texas A&M University, Furman University, University of Arizona, Barnard College, Amherst College, Boston College, University of Idaho and Union College.

Invited institutions must demonstrate a significant commitment to undergraduate research in chemistry, biochemistry, biology or other science discipline. They also must demonstrate an ability to compete successfully on a national level for scientific research funds in peer-reviewed government and private foundation-supported programs. The foundation also takes into account the quality of an institution’s faculty mentors, Feke said.

The 13 Case Western Reserve faculty mentors for the Beckman Scholars Program were nominated by department chairs based on their extensive engagement in undergraduate research. They are:

  • Drew Adams, assistant professor, Department of Genetics
  • Eben Alsberg, professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering
  • Radhika Atit, professor, Department of Biology
  • Carlos Crespo-Hernández, associate professor, Department of Chemistry
  • Jessica Fox, assistant professor, Department of Biology
  • Efstathios Karathanasis, associate professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering
  • Alan D. Levine, professor, Department of Molecular Biology and Microbiology
  • Danny Manor, associate professor, Department of Nutrition
  • Claudia Mizutani, associate professor, Department of Biology
  • Emily Pentzer, assistant professor, Department of Chemistry
  • Julie Renner, assistant professor, Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
  • Mohan Sankaran, professor, Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
  • Anirban Sen Gupta, associate professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering

For more information, contact Bill Lubinger at