Physics Student Selected as 2005 Goldwater Scholar


A KSU physics student, David Thompson of Burlingame, was one of four Kansas State University students who have been awarded $7,500 Barry M. Goldwater Scholarships. The other KSU students include Mike Higgins, Manhattan; Meg Fasulo, Olathe; and Matt Basel, Overland Park.


K-State students have now won 53 Goldwater Scholarships since the program began in 1989. K-State is ranked first in the nation among all 500 four-year state universities in the number of Goldwater winners.  Including both the 500 public schools and 1,500 private colleges and universities in the nation, only Princeton, Harvard and Duke have produced more Goldwater scholars.


"This is the ninth year in the 17-year history of the Goldwater Scholarship competition that K-State has had four winners in one year. It's also the 15th time K-State has had multiple winners of this national honor," said K-State president Jon Wefald.  "Our congratulations to these four students on this outstanding accomplishment."


Thompson is a senior in electrical engineering with an emphasis in biomedical engineering and minors in physics and Japanese.  He was a teaching assistant for several years and was a coordinator of Physical World labs.  He plans to earn a doctorate in biomedical engineering and conduct research and teach in a university setting, focusing on biomedical engineering and the new opportunities emerging in the field. A K-State honors list student, he is a member of the College of Engineering honors program and has received the James A. Branson Memorial Scholarship.  He has been active with Powercat Masters Toastmasters, where he served as secretary.  Thompson is currently conducting research under the supervision of Tim Bolton, professor of physics.  His project is a simulation program to help measure neutrino oscillations.  He is a 2001 graduate of Burlingame High School and Allen County Community College, which he attended concurrently. Thompson is married to Amity I. Smith Thompson and is the son of David W. and Judith B. Thompson.


The other three students are Higgins who is a senior in mathematics and statistics, Fasulo who is a senior in chemistry, biochemistry and microbiology, and Basel who is a sophomore in chemistry.


The Goldwater Scholarship competition is for students who major in science, math or engineering and plan a career in research.  The scholarship provides up to $7,500 annually for a student's final one or two years of undergraduate studies. To be eligible, students must have at least a 3.0 grade point average.  They also must complete four mini-essays and write a longer essay about a significant area of research in their field of study.   Go to for more information.