The Governor’s School for Science and Mathematics (GSSM) alumnus Landon Bradshaw ‘19 was one of the two people named the 2022 Barry M. Goldwater Scholars. The Goldwater Scholarship is the premier undergraduate award for STEM students. Goldwater Scholars go on to become some of this country’s finest scientists.
Bradshaw, a Lake City, South Carolina native, is a junior biochemistry and molecular biology major at Wake Forest University. Bradshaw found his motivation to apply for the fellowship primarily out of curiosity. He wanted to see where his strengths were and where he stood on a national stage. Bradshaw has been interested in research since he left GSSM. The first thing that spiked his interest in research was the ability to answer his own questions using experiments. “Research extends past pure memorization by using critical thinking and experimentation to string together observations and describe the world. This unique aspect, coupled with the possibility of creating new knowledge through discovery, drew me in instantly,” Bradshaw said.
At Wake Forest, Bradshaw is involved in many ways around the campus. He is a President’s Aide in the Office of the President where he participates in the University’s governance by giving student feedback and engaging with the University leadership. Bradshaw is also a part of the executive board for the Minority Association of Pre-Health Students, Wake Downtown Ambassadors, Deacon Douglas, Dean’s Student Advisory Panel, and the Climbing Club.
When asking Bradshaw what being named a Goldwater Scholar meant to him, he said, “Firstly, being named a Goldwater Scholar is a testament to all of the mentors, professors, friends, and family who have invested in me along my journey. They have taught me to always bet on myself, and winning this award affirms that life lesson. Additionally, becoming a Goldwater Scholar gives me much hope for the future; it signifies that, perhaps, I have what it takes to make a significant contribution to the field of regenerative medicine in the future. This award also means a lot to me because I join a group of previous Goldwater scholars, like President Danny Dorsel, my old student council “buddy” or administration partner, who I look up to in many ways.”
After graduating from Wake Forest, Bradshaw plans to attend medical school and become an academic physician. He hopes to develop regenerative medicine therapies in the lab and see them used in the clinic firsthand.
"Landon is an amazing young man and deserving of this prestigious award," said President, Danny Dorsel. "While at GSSM, Landon completed his graduation research requirement during the 2018 summer at the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg, Germany. He studied the epigenetic profiles of crayfish as a model for understanding the epigenetics of clonal tumor evolution. He liked research and was an exceptional researcher so I’m not surprised that he has continued nurturing that passion at Wake Forest. I look forward to future breakthrough discoveries made by Landon!"
One of the few specialized public residential high schools of its kind, the South Carolina Governor’s School for Science + Mathematics (GSSM) exists to push motivated young learners beyond their perceived levels of academic ability. Founded in 1988 under the leadership of the late Governor Carroll Campbell, GSSM has consistently raised the bar for STEM education in the Palmetto State. GSSM’s two-year residential high school program—as well as its virtual high school program, summer camps, and outreach programs—all invite young people to explore the subjects they love in a diverse, inclusive, and uncommonly supportive academic environment. Here, challenge is viewed as a gateway to opportunity. GSSM students embrace the school’s rigorous approach to education and in so doing begin to realize their full potential. Learn more by visiting www.scgssm.org.