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Chemistry Graduate Student Wins Prestigious AAAS Award

Cynthia Tope

A graduate student in the department of Chemistry, Ms. Cynthia Tope, has been selected to receive the 2020 Helen F. Holt Scholarship for Early Career Women in Science by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). The award, to a single recipient, recognizes an outstanding graduate student who will be making a research presentation at the annual national AAAS meeting. The award includes funds to offset the cost of travel to the conference, held this year is Seattle, WA, conference registration, and AAAS membership. Ms. Tope will be presenting the results of her doctoral research, under the direction of Professor Jeffrey Urbauer, at the meeting.

Helen F. Holt was a biology professor at National Park College in Maryland and Greebrier College for Women in West Virginia. She served for two years in the West Virginia House of Delegates and was later appointed to serve as Secretary of State of West Virginia. President Dwight D. Eisenhower, appointed her to the Federal Housing Administration as special assistant to the commissioner overseeing nursing homes in 1960, and she is well known for her efforts to professionalize eldercare. Her son, Rush D. Holt Jr., a physicist and former U.S. Representative from New Jersey, served as the CEO for the AAAS from 2015 until 2019.

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