Ones to Watch
ARCS Scholarships Foster Heightened Accomplishment
for NAU Recipients
Seven NAU doctoral students were awarded Achievement Rewards for College Scientists (ARCS) scholarships of $7,000 each for the 2008-09 academic year. Anita Antoninka, Bala Chaudhary, Rebecca Colman, Benjamin Duval, Elizabeth Kalies, Valerie Kurth, and Daniel Laughlin tend to agree that, as welcome as the additional money is on a tight graduate student budget, the confirmation of the value of their research is the biggest prize.
Colman, a doctoral student in microbial genetics and genomics, says, “Having someone outside of your field say your research is worth supplemental funding has had an amazing impact on my drive to finish and go above and beyond what is necessary.”
The funding also can enable students to take advantage of special opportunities in their discipline.
“Because of the ARCS scholarship in 2006-07, I was able to travel to the Netherlands for two courses offered to select doctoral students only once every three years,” says Antoninka, a Ph.D. candidate in environmental sciences. “The courses in soil ecology and nematology were taught by the world’s experts. Being able to participate in these programs has already aided my research, and the new contacts I made have the potential to create career opportunities after graduation.”
The award recipients also report that they will use the funds for field work, lab analyses, and otherwise unaffordable aspects of their research; travel funds for national and international scientific meetings; and updating equipment and purchasing reference works.
The ARCS Foundation was founded in 1958 in Los Angeles, California, in response to the launch of the first satellite in space, the Russian Sputnik. This monumental accomplishment was compelling evidence of America’s need to support the education of its scientists to become competitive in technological fields.
The ARCS Foundation is a nonprofit organization composed of professional and nonprofessional members who volunteer their services. The ARCS Phoenix chapter has awarded $3,288,400 in scholarship monies since 1975 to 588 scholars from Arizona’s three major universities.