Sustainable energy student earns Goldwater Scholarship at TU

Monday, April 14, 2008

Two other TU students receive honorable mentions

University of Tulsa student Maria Holland, a sophomore mechanical engineering major from Minnesota, has been named a 2008 Goldwater Scholar, which is the premier award for recognizing students pursuing careers in science, mathematics and engineering.

After finishing her undergraduate degree, Holland plans to earn a doctoral degree in sustainable energy engineering. In her professional career, she wants to conduct research in low-technology renewable energy, teach at the university level and write textbooks.

Two other TU students received honorable mentions in the Goldwater Scholar competition: Nathan Brooks, a junior computer science and electrical engineering major from Euless, Texas; and Erin Stranford, a sophomore physics and applied mathematics major from Albuquerque, NM.

Holland, a 2006 graduate from Coon Rapids Senior High School, is president of TU’s chapter of Engineers Without Borders (EWB) and will lead a group of TU students this summer on a research and service project on the northern border of China to develop sustainable dwellings for shepherds. During the 2007 summer, Holland traveled with the EWB group to the Jilin province in China to set up a wind turbine in a rural village to provide the residents with sustainable power.

"The intimate connection with a community in another part of the world has given me a different perspective on domestic and international issues that I could not have gotten any other way," Holland said in an interview about her trip.

TU has had 42 students receive Goldwater Scholarships since 1995. The one- and two-year scholarships cover the cost of tuition, fees, books, and room and board up to a maximum of $7,500 per year, with sophomores receiving two-year scholarships.