NEW YORK—Rose Spear, a chemistry major at Fordham College at Rose Hill, has been awarded a prestigious 2006 Gates-Cambridge Trust Scholarship to study at Cambridge University in England beginning in fall 2006.

As a Gates-Cambridge Scholar, Rose will work with an international team of researchers in the Department of Materials Science and Metallurgy on a D. Phil. project in bone tissue engineering.  The objective of her research at Cambridge is to develop a new bone adhesion material and a biomedical method for healing broken bones. As a future physician-scientist, Rose hopes to discover international treatment protocols through groundbreaking biomaterials research.

Under the stewardship of Ipsita Banerjee, Ph.D., an assistant professor of chemistry at Fordham University, Rose worked with a research team analyzing biomedical applications of peptide nanotubes and nanoscale bone materials as a means to develop artificial bone. In May 2005, she presented her research findings at the Undergraduate Research Symposium

“I am thrilled about receiving the Gates Cambridge Scholarship to research bone tissue materials at Cambridge in the fall,” said Spear, who will graduate in May 2006. “My work with Dr. Banerjee showed me how I could combine my love of medicine and my fascination for scientific research, and I look forward to my research at the Medical Materials Centre at Cambridge University.”

Spear was a junior inductee to Phi Beta Kappa and is the current president of the Fordham University chapter of Alpha Sigma Nu – the Jesuit honor society.  In 2005, she was awarded a Matteo Ricci Summer Fellowship through Fordham’s St. Edmund Campion Institute for the Advancement of Intellectual Excellence to conduct a summer internship in medicinal chemistry at Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, where she synthesized enzyme inhibitors as potential cures for Alzheimer’s disease. Her research has appeared in Polymer Preprints and she has submitted a full-length article to the Journal of “Colloids and Surfaces-Biointerfaces.”

A native of Newburgh, New York, Spear is the daughter of Elizabeth and Howard J.P. Spear. Among her numerous extracurricular activities, Rose enjoys singing with the Folk Choir and performs as a member of both the Pep Band (glockenspiel) and the University Band (oboe).

Spear received the Gates Cambridge Scholarship with the assistance of Fordham’s St. Edmund Campion Institute for the Advancement of Intellectual Excellence, which provides information and guidance to exemplary students seeking competitive awards for undergraduate and graduate study or research. The Campion Institute attempts to identify and motivate Fordham students for such major fellowships as Fulbright, Marshall, and Mitchell scholarships. The Institute also sponsors the Matteo Ricci Summer Fellowship Program, where undergraduate students are paired with faculty mentors to conduct appropriate research.

The Gates-Cambridge Trust Scholarships were created in 2000 when the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation of Seattle, Wash., announced a $210 million donation to the University of Cambridge to endow the program. The scholarships, which are awarded only to students who gain admission to Cambridge University through its highly selective admission process, cover the full cost of study at the University.

The scholarships are awarded on the basis of a person’s capacity for leadership, intellectual ability, and their desire to use their knowledge to contribute to the well being of society. Since the start of program, 527 Gates Scholars from 72 countries have been selected, 224 of them from the United States. Spear is the first student from Fordham to ever be awarded the scholarship and the only student from a Jesuit University to receive the scholarship this year.