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Sophomore Harvey Shi Named Goldwater Scholar

Scholarship is designed to encourage careers in mathematics, natural sciences and engineering

Duke sophomore Harvey Shi
Harvey Shi, a Duke University sophomore, has been named a 2016 scholar by the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program. Shi is among 252 students awarded Goldwater Scholarships for the 2016-17 academic year. The one- and two-year scholarships go toward covering the cost of tuition, fees, books, room and board up to a maximum of $7,500 per year.  The Goldwater Scholars were selected on the basis of academic merit from a field of 1,150 mathematics, science and engineering students who were nominated by the institutional representatives of 415 colleges and universities nationwide. Virtually all scholars intend to obtain a Ph.D. as their degree objective. The federally endowed scholarship program honoring the late U.S. Sen. Barry Goldwater was designed to foster and encourage outstanding students to pursue careers in the fields of mathematics, the natural sciences and engineering.  Shi, a Pratt School of Engineering student from Woodway, Texas, plans to declare majors in electrical and computer engineering and computer science.  After Duke he hopes to pursue a Ph.D. in systems biology and conduct supercomputing research while teaching at a research university. “My eventual goal is to tackle challenging biomedical problems with supercomputing. I want to lead interdisciplinary teams of researchers on applying supercomputing to a variety of different issues, from investigating nanoscale drug delivery methods, to modelling and analyzing cancer cell pathways with neural networks,” Shi said. Shi is conducting research under the direction of Amanda Randles, an assistant professor of biomedical engineering. He is developing supercomputer models for pre-operative predictions of blood flow for stent placement in aneurysms with the goal of producing a virtual-reality interface for physicians to interact with and prepare for surgical procedures.  “Harvey is able to visualize and process trends in the data, and tie them back to physical hypotheses,” said Steven Craig, professor and chair of Duke’s chemistry department. “This is unusually mature scientific thinking. The combination of problem-solving ability, thirst for important and challenging problems, and innate curiosity is quite special.” Two Duke juniors, Anisha Singh and Yilun Zhou, received honorable mentions. Since its first award in 1989, the foundation has bestowed more than 7,680scholarships worth approximately $48 million. Sixty-five Duke students have received Goldwater Scholarships since 1995.  For a full list of winners and more information about the Goldwater Scholarship, visit