MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — A recent West Virginia University graduate was the recipient of the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship in recognition of his research accomplishments and his proposal for graduate-level research.
Noah Spencer, a biology major in the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, May graduate and Honors Laureate, was mentored by Rita Rio, professor with the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences and proprietor of the Rio Laboratory, since he was a senior in high school.
Rio said Spencer, who was then attending University High School, approached her with an interest in her research and expressed a desire to become involved in Rio’s work. The two met and Rio gave Noah a copy of Martin Blaser’s “Missing Microbes,” asking that he touch base with her after he finished the book.
“I thought maybe he’d come back in a couple months or something like that, and Noah, I think within a week or two weeks, had read the book and was ready to discuss it. I was certainly in awe because I [thought] ‘Wow, this person is really a go-getter,’ ” Rio said…