Two CSU students are Goldwater Scholarship honorable mentions

Two Colorado State University students, Dillon Jarrell and Joshua Romero, received honorable mentions in this year’s Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship Competition. These highly competitive awards go to outstanding students who wish to pursue careers in science, mathematics and engineering.

dillon jarrell
Dillon Jarrell

Dillon Jarrell is a junior chemical and biological engineering student. During his undergraduate studies, he has conducted research in both academia and industry. His three years working in the laboratory of Christopher Gentile, assistant professor in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, has resulted in the development of animal models with vascular dysfunction, as well as a working hypothesis on the pathogenesis of cardiovascular disease.

In industry, Jarrell has designed experiments, conducted high-throughput drug candidate screens, and given formal presentations recommending specific compounds for clinical trial testing to treat chronic heart disease. In addition to research and engineering, he stays busy at home with his wife, Emily, and 2-year-old daughter, Olivia.

Josh Romero is a junior in biochemistry and molecular biology. He conducts research on the mechanisms of DNA repair in the lab of Jac Nickoloff, professor in the Department of Environmental and Radiological Health Sciences. Romero also works as a nursing assistant for University of Colorado Health, and tutors students in physiology at CSU.

Josh Romero
Josh Romero

After high school, Romero attended the University of Northern Colorado, but dropped out when he was diagnosed with stage 3b testicular cancer. After successful treatment, he enrolled in Aims Community College, where he received several awards including the President’s Medallion, and the Outstanding General Chemistry Student Award. In 2014, Romero received the Griffin Scholarship to attend CSU.

Romero plans to apply to MD/Ph.D. programs after he graduates, to conduct translational cancer research and improve current cancer therapies. Josh hopes that he and his wife, Vanessa – both first-generation college students – will be role models for their 2- and 4-year old daughters, Jaylin and Jordyn.

Apply to be a Goldwater Scholar

Current freshmen and sophomores interested in applying for a Goldwater Scholarship can contact Mary Swanson at