News & Features

Sarah Williams - DoD SMART Scholarship

Sarah Williams 

Oct. 24, 2013

Sarah L. Williams (BSCE 2013) has been selected to receive a Science, Mathematics, and Research for Transformation (SMART) scholarship from the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD). The award includes full funding of tuition and education-related fees, an annual stipend, a paid summer internship, and employment placement after graduation at a DoD laboratory.

Williams completed her undergraduate work in civil engineering at The University of Texas at Austin specializing in construction materials and structural engineering. She will continue at UT Austin for her M.S. degree and focus her research on biomineralization in cement-based materials. She is developing a natural biocementitious composite material for structural applications.  

Williams will be co-advised by Raissa Ferron and Mary Jo Kirisits. She became involved in bacterial concrete research by participating in the Graduates Linked with Undergraduates in Engineering (GLUE) research program under the guidance of Dr. Ferron while she was still an undergraduate student. During this time, she developed a strong interest in sustainable materials research. She continued her work with Dr. Ferron by completing an independent study research project the following year focusing on ex-situ precipitation of calcium carbonate by microorganisms in a nutrient-rich environment.

The SMART Scholarship for Service Program is an opportunity for students pursuing an undergraduate or graduate degree in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines to receive a full scholarship and be gainfully employed upon degree completion. Established by the Department of Defense (DoD), this prestigious award aims to increase the number of civilian scientists and engineers working at DoD laboratories.