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Samantha Aguirre, a biomedical engineering sophomore, and John Kondziolka, an environmental engineering junior, have been awarded 2011 Udall Scholarships.

Named for Morris K. Udall, a former Arizona congressman, the scholarships are awarded to sophomores and juniors whose career goals mirror Udall’s focus on Native American and environmental issues.

The students are among 80 national recipients—three from ASU—to receive the $5,000 awards.

Aguirre, a member of the Navajo Nation, plans to earn a dentistry degree and become an advocate for advances at Indian Health Services in Phoenix, where only 10 full-time and two part-time dentists currently provide care for about 75,000 Native Americans.

Aguirre is a leader in ASU’s American Indian Science and Engineering Society.

Kondziolka wants to become a leader in new technologies for water purification, developing sustainable water systems and providing access to clean water. He is already active in this effort, working on a multi-year project to refurbish a water system in Ecuador through the ASU chapter of Engineers Without Borders. He has served as the team’s project education leader, helping establish and educate a water board for the community.

Kondziolka is also a Flinn Scholar and has done research through the Fulton Undergraduate Research Initiative and the School of Sustainability.

Original story on ASU News:

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