David M. Baldwin Memorial Scholarship

The David M. Baldwin Memorial Scholarship awards outstanding scholars with recognized service to RIT, the Thomas H. Gosnell School of Life Sciences, and the wider community.

About David M. Baldwin

photo of David BaldwinDavid Mark Baldwin graduated from Reed College in Portland, Oregon in 1932 with a BA in biology. He went on to earn an MS degree in bacteriology (with a minor in parasitology) from the University of California at Berkeley in 1934. Professor Baldwin did not pursue a doctoral degree; however, he held a teaching fellowship in bacteriology. He moved on to Tucson, Arizona in 1938 as a bacteriologist in charge of antigen production at the Wyatt Clinic and Research Foundation.

While teaching biology at Champlain College, he applied for a faculty position at RIT. In 1953 he was hired as a member of the Chemistry Department and taught biology, chemistry, and physics. Eleven years transpired before the Biology Department was formed.

By 1966, the College of Science had become an official entity, and the Department of Biology had expanded to include a botanist, two zoologists, a microbiologist, and the Chairman. The department faculty continued to grow and by 1971 there were seven faculty members. The hiring of faculty with fine-tuned specialization provided Professor Baldwin with the opportunity to devote himself to the instruction of introductory biology. He was one of the original instructors in the Contemporary Science sequence of courses, which used an integrative approach to teaching science to non-science majors. He was also the first RIT instructor to go "live" on closed circuit TV and the course was broadcast to numerous locations on campus. His efforts were recognized in 1968 when he was awarded one of the first RIT Outstanding Teaching Awards.

Professor Baldwin's teaching career came to a sudden and tragic end in 1975. Since there were no living relatives at the time of his death, his estate was left to RIT. It is that estate that provides the basis for the David M Baldwin Memorial Scholarships in Biological Sciences, first awarded in 1981. Shortly after his death, some of his students raised funds for the design of a memorial plaque. The bronze memorial which hangs in the first floor hallway of the College of Science, crafted by the late Hans Christensen, Professor of Fine and Applied Arts, is a tribute to Professor Baldwin's many accomplishments at RIT.

Call for Applicants

The David M. Baldwin Memorial Scholarship ($6,000) is open to all Thomas H. Gosnell School of Life Sciences 3rd and 4th year students.

Applications Due: November 26, 2020 at 5:00 PM
Requirements: Minimum 3.4 GPA and must be a full-time student for at least 1 year.
Applications must include: Up-to-date resume or CV and a written statement describing key academic and service contributions.

Stop by the Thomas H. Gosnell School of Life Sciences office (GOS-2102) or email us for more information.

Baldwin Award Recipients

Alaa Abdelmageed Ahmed

Alaa is a fourth-year Biotechnology and molecular bioscience student from Cairo, Egypt. Outside of academics, Alaa’s passions, mostly revolve around yoga, (her way to de-stress) and volunteer work. She has been a yoga teacher at RIT for a year. She has also been a TA for Anatomy and Molecular Biology labs, a peer mentor for WISe, and a tutor for Genetics. Additionally, most of her research work at RIT was in Cancer Biology and Virology. After graduation, Alaa plans on pursuing her Ph.D. in genetics from a US institution and continuing on to becoming a professor.

headshot photo of Alaa Ahmed
Sofie "Rowan" Christie

As a third year bioinformatics student, Rowan has explored a passion for coding through bioinformatics programming classes, developing strong appreciation for interdisciplinary science. The RISE and Inclusive Excellence program has given them the opportunity to work with Dr. Stack Whitney to conduct two research projects: macroinvertebrate community responses to environmental variables and the influence of study methodologies on stability trends of long-term deer tick datasets, presenting the latter last fall at the Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students. Rowan is also deeply involved in the House of General Science, a Special Interest House for students passionate about science, and took leadership roles as Project Manager and Tech Head. Since, they have expanded the House of General Science’s involvement in K-12 outreach though STEAM Day demos and Campus Visits. They also are a member of Fowl Play, an improv comedy club, participating in several shows including Dr. Munson’s Performing Arts Challenge. Upon graduation, Rowan plans to earn a Ph.D. in bioinformatics to continue with research that benefits environmental and human health, applying their computational skills to ecology, evolutionary biology, and genetics.

headshot photo of Sofie Christie
Alyssa Schoenfeldt

Alyssa is a third-year student in the Environmental Science BS/MS program from Buffalo, NY. Alyssa spent last summer working on Dr. Kaitlin Stack Whitney’s roadside ecology project, which will be incorporated into her thesis; studying pollinators and roadside habitats across New York State. She plans to continue her field research with Dr. Stack Whitney this summer. Alyssa is currently the President of the Recover Rochester Club, allowing her to serve the Rochester community as well as contribute to RIT’s sustainability goals. After completing the BS/MS program, she plans to continue studying and working in the field of conservation biology.

headshot photo of Alyssa Schoenfeldt
Alexandria Shumway

Alexandria is a Bioinformatics Master’s student. She loves to work with kids and has spent the past few years at RIT doing STEM activities with the Girl Scouts of America, participating in a Pen Pal program with the Churchville-Chili School District, and working at her local elementary school back home. She is also a member of the Honors Program at RIT where she has previously headed the Honors Service Committee and worked to organize fundraising events for charity.  Alexx is also an active member of the Alpha Xi Delta sorority where she has volunteered at Fall Cleanups, the Wheeler Domestic Violence Shelter, and several events with Autism Speaks. For the past four years, Alexx has enjoyed working in Dr. Sweet’s lab as an undergraduate and graduate student studying the Ophioplocus esmarki brittle star. This past summer, she did research abroad on intestinal inflammation in Kiel, Germany as a DAAD scholar. In the future, she plans to pursue a Ph.D. in genetics and work on complex human diseases. Unfortunately, she is unable to attend tonight due to an interview at Duke University.

headshot photo of Alexandria Shumway
Lauren Trumpore

Lauren is a third-year Biotechnology and Molecular Bioscience major with a minor in Criminal Justice.  She is the College of Science Senator for Student Government and Secretary for the College of Science Student Advisory Board, allowing her to positively impact the college not only by hosting events, such as the Brick City Alumni Networking Event, the Winter Celebration, COS Coffee Chat, and the COS Spring Picnic. She has also been instrumental to bringing updates to Gosnell such as the GSoLS/SMS lounge.  Lauren is an active brother and marketing chair for Alpha Phi Omega, allowing her to volunteer with local Boy Scouts, House of Mercy, Mount Hope Cemetery, and the American Diabetes Association.  Additionally, she is a student researcher in the MBER research lab headed by Dr. Wright and Dr. Newman, where she has participated in a SURF and been able to present her research twice on campus.  She is also a member of the Biotech Club and a player on the Field Hockey team.  Lauren has enjoyed representing the College of Science and volunteering in the Rochester community, with plans to continue doing so next year.

headshot photo of Lauren Trumpore
Emalee Wrightstone

Emalee is a 3rd year Biotechnology and Molecular Bioscience major with minors in Chemistry and Ethics. She is heavily involved in the College of Science through both her role as the COS Student Advisory Board Vice President and the COS Honors Representative. In addition, she is a member of Biotech Club and Plant Science Journal Club. Emalee enjoys mentoring and teaching students in her roles as an Honors Orientation Mentor, Learning Assistant, and Teaching Assistant for the past two years.

Due to her widespread scientific interest and general curiosity, Emalee is involved in numerous research fields ranging from the investigation of potential chemotherapy to analyzing DNA textbook illustrations to characterizing maize green leaf volatile mutants’ microbiomes. Following her love of science and biology, Emalee plans to earn a Ph.D. in a field of molecular biology with the end goal of working in an industry setting.

headshot photo of Emalee Wrightstone

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