Sunday, February 25th, 2024

Houtz Named Goldwater Scholar

Goldwater Scholarship considered the most prestigious undergraduate research award in America.

Millersville University junior biology major, Jennifer Houtz has had her many hours of research, grant writing and tutoring pay off in a big way. Houtz was recently named a Goldwater Scholar.

The Goldwater Scholarship is considered the most prestigious undergraduate research award in the natural sciences, mathematics and engineering in America. It is aimed to recognize and support highly qualified undergraduate scientists with a scholarship of up to $7,500.

Jenn Houtz
Jenn Houtz with Dr. Brent Horton

“I am very grateful to be selected as a Goldwater Scholar, but none of this would be possible without the guidance and support of my research mentors Dr. Brent Horton and Dr. John Wallace,” says Houtz.

With a 4.0 GPA, Houtz has participated in three research projects including a project with Horton in the Ecuadorian Amazon (for two winter sessions).  She was a Barry Goldwater Honorable Mention in 2016 and has presented her research at Made In Millersville as well as several other conferences (local through international professional conferences).

Houtz will graduate in May 2018 and plans to pursue a Ph.D. in zoology and conduct research on the proximate and ultimate mechanisms underlying avian social behavior. Eventually, she wants to teach and conduct research at the university level.

“Being nominated by the school is an honor.  Receiving an honorable mention is a significant achievement as this is a highly selective program.  Needless to say, being selected as a scholar is a tremendous accomplishment,”said Dr. Mike Jackson, Dean of the College of Science and Technology.

“This award has helped me realize my potential as a scientist and fuels my desire to conduct integrative research in the future,” says Houtz.

Millersville University also has a student who received an Honorable Mention this year; Karam Idrees, a chemistry major.

The Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation was established by Congress in 1986 to serve as a living memorial to honor the lifetime work of Senator Barry Goldwater, who served his country for 56 years as a soldier and statesman, including 30 years in the U.S. Senate.

To be eligible, students must be a full-time sophomore or junior pursuing a degree at an accredited 4-year or 2-year institution of higher education, intend to pursue a research career in a natural science, mathematics or engineering and have a college grade point average of at least a 3.0. Each university nominates students based on GPA, prior research experience and faculty recommendations. Those students can then apply for the scholarship.

For more information about the Goldwater Scholarship, visit



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