Prize Recipient

Julian Holder-Washington

Julian Holder-Washington


Background:

Science has been my best subject throughout my primary and secondary school years. I have attained excellent grades by applying myself to the discipline, which did not come easy. Simple activities influence my interest in science. In fact I remember my first science birthday party at the local museum. The demonstrations and workshops energized all of us. In addition my casual summer get-a-ways to my uncle and aunt's hoe in the Bahamas was filled with simple experiments that stimulated my thoughts about science. For example, starting one summer we developed our expertise in origami aircraft design. Everyday we crafted origami jets, utilizing various styles, weights and sizes of paper. For hours I experimented with speed, height and landings.

The activity that further nourished my scientific thought process was my internships in the Minority Access to Research Careers (MARC0 program. This was my point of entry into the professional science world. As a result, of a competitive selection process for the summer of 2000, I was selected to work for Dr. Michael Baumann at the Bayview Campus of John Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, that is a laboratory at the National Institute of Health Center on Drug Abuse. In previous competitions I earned the opportunity to work for Dr. Steven Houser's physiology laboratory at Temple University where I conducted research in cardiology during the summers of 1998 and 1999. The work involved a great deal of independence and responsibility to work with the animals and record information. At the end of each summer I did a formal and written presentation and a poster display where had to explain my research in front of an audience of peers, professionals and family members.

At my high school I excelled in Advanced Placement Physics B, Advanced Placement (AP) Chemistry and Advanced Placement Calculus AB it was proven when I received the highest score on each of the exams. No one in my immediate family or my neighborhood friends had excelled in this area. And my mother was extremely apprehensive about me taking on demanding courses. I proudly proved myself when I received the highest score on each of the exams.

I am currently a first year cadet at West Point, I demonstrated to the academic committee that I was advanced in the science discipline because I validated out of Chemistry class for the first year and I cannot take Physics until my second year. I also do not have the option to select my major until my second year (that is Fall of 2002). However, given my developed interest in math and science I have a strong desire to pursue scientific research. The study of Physics combines the discipline of science and math therefore at that point I intend to major in Physics. I believe that the challenge will be the most useful in obtaining my life long goals.

Our advanced society is dependent on the leadership of the scientific community, and I intend to be one of the leaders who succeed in the scientific experimentation process.