Portia Cooper receives 2024-2025 Barry Goldwater Scholarship

April 11, 2024

Please join us in celebrating Portia Cooper's achievement as one of the recipients of the 2024-25 Barry Goldwater Scholarship.

The Goldwater Scholarship stands as one of the most esteemed awards in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields nationwide. This year, 438 scholars for the 2024-2025 term were chosen from across the United States. The scholarship aims to support undergraduate sophomores and juniors who show potential to become leading researchers in their respective disciplines and plan to pursue doctoral studies.

Portia, a junior, is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science with a minor in Mathematics. She is a Tucson native who embarked on her journey in computer science at UArizona Girls Who Code at the age of 12. Her decision to attend UA was fueled by the exceptional research opportunities provided by the CS department for undergraduate students.

Throughout her academic journey, Portia has collaborated with Dr. Mihai Surdeanu and Dr. Eduardo Blanco on various studies, including online hate speech detection, AI-optimized case selection to support ethical content moderation, and mitigating adversarial Text-to-Image prompts. Notably, a paper she authored was published in Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2023.