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Clark named Barry M. Goldwater Scholar

Clark named Barry M. Goldwater Scholar

Ezra Clark conducts research in the area of advanced energy materials in the Conn Center.

Mrs. Peggy Goldwater Clay, Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation, announced today that the Trustees awarded 275 scholarships for the 2011–2012 academic year to undergraduate sophomores and juniors from the United States.

Ezra L. Clark, a junior undergraduate chemical engineering student at University of Louisville's JB Speed School of Engineering, was named a 2011 Scholar by the highly prestigious Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence Program for his research in the area of advanced energy materials toward renewable energy conversion and storage.

The Goldwater Scholars were selected on the basis of academic merit from a field of 1,095 mathematics, science, and engineering students who were nominated by the faculties of colleges and universities nationwide. The one and two year scholarships will cover the cost of tuition, fees, books, and room and board up to a maximum of $7,500 per year.

Ezra, a native of Louisville (KY), was nominated for the highly competitive award based on his academic accomplishment and innovative scientific research. For the past two years, he has worked with Professor Mahendra Sunkara’s research group within the Conn Center for Renewable Energy Research. Ezra has undertaken numerous research projects exploring the use of nanotechnology in energy conversion applications. His current and past research efforts within the Conn Center include the synthesis of metal oxide nanowires of different metal systems over large surface areas and in bulk quantities for use in lithium-ion batteries, electrocatalysts, and solar cells.

In addition to research, Ezra enthusiastically shares his interests with his fellow students and motivates them to think about energy issues and the impact of renewable energy sources. He and a group of students from the Conn Center founded a student organization at UofL called Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Club (RE3), for which he currently serves as president. RE3 intends to promote student interest in renewable energy through an engaging lecture series and hands-on activities for students and community members alike. RE3 currently encourages student participation in the Mickey R. Wilhelm Solar Flight Competition and the UofL Solar Decathlon Team. Ezra himself has been a key participant in both of the above team activities.

Ezra intends to pursue a PhD in chemical engineering. Ultimately, he wants to apply his knowledge and training toward a successful career in renewable energy research and technology advancement. Until that time, Ezra continues his innovative work with Dr. Sunkara and his fellow researchers at the Conn Center and enjoys his experiences as a UofL student.

The Goldwater Foundation is a federally endowed agency established by Public Law 99-661 on November 14, 1986. The Scholarship Program honoring Senator Barry M. Goldwater was designed to foster and encourage outstanding students to pursue careers in the fields of mathematics, the natural sciences, and engineering. The Goldwater Scholarship is the premier undergraduate award of its type in these fields.

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