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MassBay Professor to Receive CUR-Goldwater Faculty Mentor Award

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

National award recognizes Bruce Jackson’s pioneering role in developing
undergraduate research and mentoring MassBay’s record Goldwater Scholars

WELLESLEY HILLS (April 1, 2015) – Dr. Bruce A. Jackson, professor and chair of the Biotechnology and Forensic DNA Science department at Massachusetts Bay Community College (MassBay), has been selected to receive the 2015 CUR-Goldwater Scholars Faculty Mentor Award by the Council on Undergraduate Research and the Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation.

The national award acknowledges Jackson’s pioneering work to bring cutting-edge, real-world research opportunities to undergraduate students at a community college and recognizes his work as a teacher and mentor to the 20 MassBay students who have received the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship, the highest undergraduate prize for science, math, and engineering in the nation, during the past two decades.

“This award is a testament to Bruce Jackson’s tireless dedication to his students and to his work at MassBay to develop and grow our renowned sciences and undergraduate research programs,” said MassBay President John O’Donnell. “MassBay Community College is extremely honored to accept this award on Dr. Jackson’s behalf to help build future generations of scientists and scholars.”

Since 1996, MassBay has produced more Goldwater Scholars than all of the other community colleges in the United States combined and more than many four-year institutions. Most recently, Suhaily Penix, who will graduate with an associate’s degree in biotechnology, marine biotechnology, and forensics DNA science this May, received Honorable Mention in 2015 from the Goldwater Scholarship Foundation for her research work under Jackson at MassBay.

“My students have made me famous,” Jackson said. “It is their scientific achievements that have given MassBay’s biotechnology program its international reputation. This award is the result of their great successes throughout the world.”

In recognizing Jackson for his role as faculty mentor, Dr. Elizabeth Ambos, CUR’s Excecutive Officer, describes him as an “inspirational model for faculty who seek to combine research and teaching.”

Dr. W. Franklin Gilmore, president of the Goldwater Scholarship Foundation, described him as a “true champion for undergraduate research” and commended his work as faculty mentor for all of the 20 Goldwater Scholars from MassBay.

Jackson will receive the award in April at the 2015 National Conference on Undergraduate Research at Eastern Washington University in Spokane, Wash. In addition to the award, MassBay will receive $5,000 to support its undergraduate research programs for the upcoming school year.

MassBay awards associate degrees and certificates in over 80 academic programs in a wide range of career-driven subjects such as business, computer science, life sciences, health care and the liberal arts. The College’s facilities in Wellesley Hills, Framingham and Ashland house day, evening and weekend classes that meet the needs of degree-seeking students and career minded life-long learners. Online options provide convenience and allow faculty to facilitate the learning process. Since its founding in 1961, MassBay has been accredited by several governing bodies and strives to meet the needs of the diverse local communities it serves. To learn more about MassBay, attend the Fall Open House on Saturday, November 22.

The Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation was established by Congress in 1986 to honor Senator Barry Goldwater, who served the United States for 56 years as a soldier, statesman, and U.S. Senator. The Goldwater Scholarships go to college students who intend to pursue research careers in science, engineering, and mathematics, and is considered the premier scholarship award of its type in these fields.

The Council on Undergraduate Research supports faculty and student development for high-quality undergraduate student-faculty collaborative research, scholarship, and creative activities. More than 700 institutions and over 10,000 individuals belong to CUR. 

More information about MassBay and the upcoming academic semesters can be found at, or by calling (781) 239-2411.