CUR-Goldwater Scholars Faculty Mentor Award Recognizes Excellence in Undergraduate Research

The Council on Undergraduate Research and the Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation Acknowledge the Mentorship of Dr. Carol Parish

Washington, D.C. - The Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) and The Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation will be presenting Dr. Carol Parish, Professor of Chemistry at the University of Richmond, the 2016 CUR-Goldwater Scholars Faculty Mentor Award. The award will be presented during the Council on Undergraduate Research Biennial Conference, on June 27, 2016 at the University of South Florida. In addition to a plaque commemorating the award, the University of Richmond will receive a $5,000 award in support of the undergraduate research programs of Dr. Parish.

Dr. Parish's accomplishments over the last two decades are truly remarkable- she has been a  collaborative and highly productive research leader, prolific scholar, and teacher, in addition to a personal mentor to eight University of Richmond undergraduate students who have achieved Goldwater Scholar awards. “I’m so pleased that Carol’s significant engagement with our undergraduate students is being honored by this award,” said Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost Jacque Fetrow. “This recognition reflects powerfully a key priority that distinguishes all faculty at the University of Richmond; a deep, personal and abiding commitment to students, including providing meaningful opportunities for them to participate in important and sometimes groundbreaking research.”

In recognition of the important roles that faculty mentors play in the success of Goldwater Scholars, the award is presented jointly by CUR and the Goldwater Scholarship Foundation to acknowledge individual faculty who have made outstanding contributions to the success of undergraduate researchers who have gone on to be Goldwater Scholars.  Elizabeth Ambos, Executive Officer for the Council on Undergraduate Research states:  “Dr. Parish (Carol) is a sterling example of an academic leader who not only promotes the research success of her high-achieving students, but has also created a research “ecosystem” at the University or Richmond and other institutions, involving more than thirty computational chemistry faculty colleagues serving as visiting scholars and/or research collaborators with her students.  Carol’s career has been marked by publication of a series of well-regarded papers in highly-ranked peer-reviewed journals, and the garnering of close to $2.5M in competitive research grant funding.”

In the last 15 years, her students have been responsible for more than 250 presentations at regional, national and international chemistry meetings. John Mateja, President of the Goldwater Scholarship Foundation, notes, “Physical and computational chemistry are challenging subfields of chemistry.  It is a remarkable that Carol has mentored 88 undergraduates in these subfields in the 19 years she has been on the faculty at the University of Richmond and Hobart and William Smith Colleges.”  Mateja went on to say, “I was particularly pleased to see that many of her students worked with her for multiple years, that 47 have been women and 26 are from groups that are underrepresented in the sciences and that, in addition to the 8 Goldwater scholarships her students have won, they have also been selected for Gates, Fulbright, and Rhodes scholarships as well.  It is clear from what her students and colleagues say about her that she is both an exceptional and knowledgeable teacher and mentor.”


Council on Undergraduate Research: The Council on Undergraduate Research ( supports and facilitates high-quality undergraduate student-faculty collaborative research, scholarship, and creative activities. Over 700 institutions and nearly 10,000 individuals belong to CUR. CUR believes that the best way to capture student interest and create enthusiasm for a discipline is through research in close collaboration with faculty members.

The Barry Goldwater Scholarship Foundation: The Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation was established by Congress in 1986 to honor Senator Barry Goldwater, who served his country for 56 years as a soldier and statesman, including 30 years of service in the U.S. Senate. The purpose of the Foundation is to provide a continuing source of highly qualified scientists, mathematicians, and engineers by awarding scholarships to college students who intend to pursue research careers in these disciplines. 


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