It was one of Winston Churchill's wishes that bright American students be able to study at Churchill College, the school of mathematics, science and engineering named in his honor within the University of Cambridge in Cambridge, England.
Next year, a UNC student will be among them.
Daniel Malawsky, a senior biostatistics and mathematics major, is one of 15 American students to receive the Churchill Scholarship to study at Churchill College. Malawsky will be using the scholarship, in addition to the Gates Cambridge Scholarship, to work on his Master’s degree and Ph.D., respectively.
“I worked in the lab at Oxford last summer and really loved England, and I thought, ‘I have to be in the U.K. for graduate school,’" Malawsky said. "I love the science culture there, and I love the institutions there so I looked for scholarships that would allow me to study in England and I found those two."
The Churchill Scholarship is a science, engineering and math scholarship that allows scholars to conduct independent research while completing their graduate studies.
Malawsky works in data analysis in the Gershon Lab, helping with neuroscience research that looks into why certain kinds of brain tumors are resistant to some treatments.
In his graduate education, Malawsky said he hopes to study population genetics for groups that are typically underrepresented in medical research.
Malawsky spends almost 20 hours a week in the lab and is skilled at finding data differences that most people would overlook, Seth Weir, a research technician in the Gershon Lab, said.
“Aside from his scientific prowess, Danny is an ideal friend and lab member to have because of his easygoing personality and ability to connect and talk with anyone," Weir said.
A mission of the Gershon Lab is to include undergraduates in research, said Dr. Timothy Gershon, an associate professor of neurology and principal investigator for the Gershon Lab. Gershon said he prioritized hiring Malawsky because of his skill set in computational work that complemented the lab.
“The lesson that I would hope people would take from reading about Danny’s story is to feel empowered, to feel like you can be successful as an undergraduate,” said Gershon. “You don’t need to feel intimidated by issues of hierarchy or status.”
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