CI student recognized nationally by Goldwater Foundation

Camarillo, Calif., May 18, 2011 – Every year the Goldwater Foundation names its Goldwater Scholars chosen from students attending colleges and universities across the United States.  The Foundation is designed to foster and encourage outstanding students who wish to pursue careers in the fields of mathematics, the natural sciences and engineering.  The Goldwater Scholarship is the premier undergraduate award of its kind in these fields.

For a second consecutive year, a CSU Channel Islands (CI) student was one of the 275 students to be named nationally as a 2011 Goldwater Scholar and receive a scholarship for $7,500. Only two students were named as Goldwater Scholars from the entire California State University system.

This year’s CI recipient is Danika Lindsay, a junior, carrying a double major in Mathematics and Applied Physics with a minor in Computer Science.  She has worked with various faculty advisors on a number of research projects during her time at CI. One of these was devoted to disrupting terrorist networks for which she modeled such networks using graphs and investigating underlying graph properties to better identify key members of networks, thus allowing intelligence agencies to more specifically focus their efforts.

One of Lindsay’s faculty mentors, Dr. Kathryn Leonard, Assistant Professor of Mathematics, noted, “Danika is genuinely interested in understanding the world around her and she allows that curiosity to lead her deeper in whatever field she happens to be working in.  She has incredible intellectual discipline and keen insight into sticky problems.  She further explained, “She has a collection of skills that rarely exist inside one human being that support her tremendous intelligence as she tackles challenging problems.

Dr. Cindy Wyels, Professor of Mathematics, mentioned that Danika became engaged in the life of the University and the Mathematics program quickly and her potential became immediately apparent to the Mathematics faculty.  Wyels explained, “When she joined me for research she had no concept of the possibilities open to her regarding research, summer research programs and/or graduate school.  She will be the first college graduate in her family and has seized every opportunity and used her intelligence, curiosity and tireless energy to succeed.”  Part of Lindsay’s success, Wyels feels, is that she has gratefully accepted every opportunity she has been offered.

Lindsay admitted she had always loved mathematics.  “There is a sort of beauty in the combination of mathematics with the real world, and it thrills me to be able to actually solve real world problems using the mathematical tools I have learned.”  She plans to graduate and go on to the doctoral level, hoping to teach in a university and inspire other young mathematicians as she has been inspired by her professors at CI.

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About California State University Channel Islands
CSU Channel Islands (CI) is the only four-year, public university in Ventura County and is known for its interdisciplinary, multicultural and international perspectives, and its emphasis on experiential and service learning. CI's strong academic programs focus on business, sciences, liberal studies, teaching credentials, and innovative master's degrees. Students benefit from individual attention, up-to-date technology, and classroom instruction augmented by outstanding faculty research. CI has been designated by the U.S. Department of Education as a Hispanic-Serving Institution and is committed to serving students of all backgrounds from the region and beyond. Connect with and learn more about CI by visiting CI's Social Media.