Two KSU Students Win Goldwater Scholarships

Two Kansas State University students from Wichita - Mark Norfleet and Julie Stilson - have been awarded Barry M. Goldwater Scholarships.

Their wins bring K-State’s record to 45 all-time Goldwater wins, topping the record of any other state university in the nation. Among all universities, public and private, K-State students rank third behind Princeton with 47, and Harvard with 46.

According to scholar adviser James Hohenbary, the students will receive up to $7,500 annually.

"Congratulations to Julie and Mark, who represented K-State very well in the Goldwater competition," said K-State president Jon Wefald. "I am pleased to know that both of these fine students plan to become university professors. K-State faculty have guided them and they will carry on the tradition of excellence in their own careers. I truly wish them the best."

Norfleet, junior in mathematics and music, is a 2000 graduate of Wichita Collegiate High School. At K-State, he is vice president of the Math Club, treasurer of Chess Club, and plays the string bass in jazz orchestra (Big Band), jazz combo and orchestra. He is researching the properties of strong divisibility sequences under the mentorship of professor Andrew Bennett. He is the son of Charles Norfleet and Rhonda Norfleet, Wichita. Norfleet’s goal is to earn a Ph.D. in mathematics and conduct mathematical research and teach at the university level.

Stilson, senior in computer science and mathematics, is a member of Silver Key honorary, tutors math and computer science, and is a HOSTS tutor for elementary school students. She has also worked as an Enhanced University Experience lab instructor during the last two fall semesters for College and Intermediate Algebra. Stilson is researching algorithms applied to Bayesian networks, with the Knowledge Discovery in Databases lab with professor William Hsu. A 1999 graduate of Wichita Southeast High School, she is the daughter of Evelyn and Mickey Stilson, Wichita. Stilson’s goal is to earn a Ph.D. in computer science and become a university professor, conducting research in artificial intelligence.

Students who have at least a 3.0 grade point average, major in science, math or engineering and plan a career in research are eligible to apply. The students were asked to fill out an application form consisting of biographical information, four mini-essays and one 600-word essay explaining scientific research they had done. The applications were judged by a panel of K-State professors.