Two FSU students earn prestigious Goldwater Scholarships

| Thu, 04/14/22
Dhenu Patel and Sophie Allen.
Dhenu Patel, is a junior exercise physiology major from Tallahassee, and Sophie Allen is a sophomore from Wauchula, Florida, majoring in psychology and biomathematics.

Two Florida State University students have earned the Barry Goldwater Scholarship, a renowned national award that annually recognizes outstanding science, mathematics and engineering sophomores and juniors for their research experiences and potential.

Dhenu Patel, a junior exercise physiology major from Tallahassee, and Sophie Allen, a sophomore from Wauchula, Florida, who is majoring in psychology and biomathematics, will receive up to $7,500 for their junior and also their senior years from the Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation to be put toward tuition, fees, books and room and board.

The Goldwater Foundation provides scholarships to college sophomores and juniors pursuing research in the “critical fields of the natural sciences, mathematics and engineering,” it says.

Patel focuses on cancer research and credits her mentors at FSU’s Irianto Lab for helping her earn the Goldwater Scholarship.

“I would credit my research mentors and advisers for supporting me and the Office of National Fellowships at FSU for helping me to navigate the applications process, which can be a little tough,” she said. “I am interested in continuing my work and pursuing a career in medical research, so this is important aid to help fund my journey.”

Allen said she found herself “breathless” after learning she’d earned the Goldwater and that the funding would allow her to continue her research at FSU’s Martin Memory Lab, where she is researching semantic and episodic memory.

“I didn’t expect to get the Goldwater as a sophomore, and I was using my first application to get familiar with the process,” she said. “I am hoping that I will be able to not work in the summer and just focus on research.”

The foundation announced that this year it has awarded 417 scholarships nationwide from a field of more than 5,000 applicants. For more information on national awards and fellowships, visit the Office of National Fellowships website at

For more information about the Goldwater Scholarship, visit