Two Biochemistry Graduate Students Awarded CALS Scholarships

Ryan Andrews and Naazneen Sofeo have each been awarded a $1,000 Print and Grace Powers Hudson Scholarship in Agriculture by the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) for the 2017-18 academic year. This scholarship is designated for students in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences pursuing a Ph.D. or M.S. degree.

Ryan is a first-year graduate student who joined Prof. Walter Moss’s lab group this spring. In the short period since joining the lab, Prof. Moss notes that Ryan is making extensive progress on his research, which required him to learn a new scripting language (PERL), and to begin learning how to create and manage databases (using MySQL Workbench and phpMyAdmin), far exceeding Prof. Moss' expectations for a first-year graduate student.

Naazneen is a fourth-year graduate student in Prof. Nikolau’s lab group. Her research project is to understand and manipulate the active site of a class of enzymes that activate carboxylic acids to Coenzyme A derivatives. Prof. Nikolau notes that Naazneen ranks among the very best of the graduate students he has mentored. Naazneen is a member of the NSF-funded Engineering Research Center for Biorenewable Chemicals (www.cbirc.iastate.edu) and therefore, interacts not only with biochemists but also with bioengineers, chemists and chemical engineers, providing her with a broad-based multidisciplinary training.

The Print and Grace Powers Hudson Scholarship in Agriculture is named in honor of Dr. Print Hudson and his wife, Grace Powers Hudson. Dr. Hudson taught at Iowa State before moving to Washington in 1931 as a research fellow at the Brookings Institution. He later joined the Department of Agriculture and in 1945, was named chief of the U.S. agricultural mission to Greece. He continued in Foreign Service as an Agricultural Attaché to a number of U. S. Embassies for other countries in Europe, South America, Africa, and Asia before his retirement. Dr. Hudson died in 1998, and Mrs. Hudson died in 2005.