’Topper earns $25,000 scholarship

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By Special to the Monitor

Scott Carlsten, a sophomore at Los Alamos High School, can worry a little less about playing for his college education. Carlsten is the recipient of the $25,000 Distinguished Award of the EnergySolutions Foundation scholarship. This is in addition to the initial $2,000 scholarship he received from the Foundation earlier this year.

“Because the scholarship program is an extension of our commitment to this great community where EnergySolutions employees live and work, I am so happy for the difference this will make in Scott’s life,” Val Christensen, CEO of EnergySolutions, said.

Exemplary students from eligible schools in eight states and Canada were selected to receive a $2,000 merit-based scholarship. All recipients were then entered into the competition for the three Distinguished Awards. Carlsten was selected from a pool of applicants from Canada, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Washington and other New Mexico students to receive the additional $25,000 Distinguished Award scholarship, which is to be used in math, science or engineering studies.

A student in Georgia was selected to receive the $2,500 Distinguished Award and a student in Washington state was selected to receive the $5,000 award.

The EnergySolutions Foundation began the scholarship program in 2006 as a way to promote the study of math, science, and engineering to encourage the next generation of professionals to seek degrees in biochemistry, biology, chemistry, ecology, engineering, environmental science, geology, geophysics, mathematics, meteorology or physics.

As of this year, EnergySolutions Foundation has awarded 760 scholarships to students in eligible schools.

Carlsten wants to study theoretical physics at Stanford University. He said that imagination is more important than knowledge because people can always improve what they have such as faster computers or better televisions but knowledge alone cannot lead to new ways of doing things. Imagination, Carlsten said, is what takes individuals to completely new ideas that will impact technology.

This is not Carlsten’s first recognition. In eighth-grade he won the regional level of the DOE Science Bowl and placed fifth in the nation. He also was on the firth place MathCounts team. Last year, he competed against all ninth grade students in the state in the Statewide Mathematics Competition and placed second. This year, Carlsten is serving as president of the DOE National Science Bowl team.

Besides his many awards, Carlsten is currently taking a full load of advanced placement (AP) classes partly to prepare for the next DOE Science Bowl competition.

When he wanted to go straight to AP chemistry and bypass advance chemistry, he had to take the mid-year and final for that class to see if he would succeed at that level. He read the textbook on his own and only missed one question on one test and none on the other.

“Our goal with the EnergySolutions Foundation scholarship program is to help these motivated students fulfill their desire of a college education,” said Colin Austin, VP for Southwestern Operations, EnergySolutions.

The EnergySolutions Foundation will honor all Washington scholarship recipients at a banquet on May 8 at Hotel Albuquerque in Old Town Albuquerque.  For more information, contact Pearl Wright at 801-870-1505 or visit www.energysolutionsfoundation.org.