Joey Montoya, son of Sara and Barry Montoya of Summerville, is a recent graduate of the South Carolina Honors College with a degree in chemical engineering and mathematics with a minor in music performance. He is a 2008 Goldwater scholar, a 2010 Rhodes finalist, the captain of the Academic Team Competition and a Carolina scholar. He was a member of Pi Mu Epsilon, the math honors society, and Tau Beta Pi, the engineering honors society. He will pursue graduate work in catalysis and chemical reaction engineering at Stanford.
Alisha Owensby, daughter of Marti and Roy Owensby of Chattanooga, Tenn., is a 2006 graduate of the South Carolina Honors College with a degree in biology and a minor in chemistry. She served as a volunteer teacher with WorldTeach in the Marshall Islands. Owensby currently is a doctoral student in botany and plant pathology at Oregon State University.
Christopher Poirel, son of Sandra Stevens-Poirel and Dennis Poirel of Columbia, is a 2008 graduate of the South Carolina Honors College with a degree in mathematics. While an undergraduate, he conducted research in hypergraph theory with Dr. Joshua Cooper of USC’s department of mathematics. He is currently a doctoral student in computer science at Virginia Tech. Poirel is a graduate of Waccamaw High School in Pawley’s Island.
Brad Setzler, son of Helen and Carl Setzler of Newberry, was a Magellan research scholar and is a recent graduate of the South Carolina Honors College with degrees in mathematics and philosophy and a minor in economics. While at USC, Setzler was president of the Cultural Exchange Association, president of Phi Sigma Tau philosophy honor society and chairman of the Waverly Economic Development Committee. He will soon start a doctoral program in economics at the University of Chicago.
Amanda Whaley is a 2004 graduate with a degree in physics. She is a graduate student at Rice University.
Two other recent USC graduates, Alexander Lesov and Aaron Warren, were granted honorable mention in the competition.
NSF fellows are allowed three years to finish their studies and given an annual stipend of up to $30,000 for full-time graduate study, an annual cost-of-education allowance of $10,500 in lieu of all tuition and fees at any U.S. university and a $1,000 travel grant.