Scholarships and Fellowships

Paras Minhas (Microbiology)
Goldwater Winner, 2012

University of Pittsburgh student Paras S. Minhas, a junior majoring in microbiology with minors in mathematics and chemistry, has been named a 2012 Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship winner for his exceptional research in the natural sciences. He is enrolled in the University’s Kenneth P. Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences and was nominated for the scholarships through the auspices of Pitt’s University Honors College.

Minhas, a Pitt Honors Scholar from Bridgewater, N.J., has an extensive background in undergraduate research, including service as a research fellow in the Kogod Center on Aging at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.; conducting a pilot study under the supervision of Arundhati Ghosh, an assistant professor in Pitt’s Department of Biology; pursuing research in the Neurosciences Critical Care Unit at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Md.; and working in Pitt’s Department of Chemistry and the Pittsburgh Institute for Neurodegenerative Diseases.

In addition to winning the Goldwater Scholarship, Minhas has been selected as an Amgen Scholar, one of 20 individuals across the United States selected for an all-expense-paid research study at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology this summer. Other awards include a 2011 Mayo Clinic Summer Research Fellowship and 2011 Pitt Honors Research and Chancellor’s Undergraduate Research Fellowships—one of only a few Pitt undergraduates in the University’s history to receive both awards. A member of Pitt’s William Pitt Debating Union, Minhas earned the College Examination Debate Association Summa Cum Laude Debate Scholar award in 2011.

Minhas plans to obtain an MD/PhD in microbiology and become a primary investigator of the etiologies of mental disorders in an effort to find cures for them. He hopes to one day lead his own laboratory and teach in biomedical sciences at the university level.