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The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
Since 1888
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.

Sophomore Evelyn Marx awarded U.S. Department of Defense SMART scholarship

This April, Marx became one of 416 recipients of a prestigious DoD scholarship to pursue engineering and defend our country after graduation.
Marx+presented+her+research+on+radiation+in+microelectronics+conducted+with+Vanderbilt%E2%80%99s+Institute+for+Space+and+Defense+Electronics+at+the+university%E2%80%99s+inaugural+Electrical+and+Computer+Engineering+Day+on+April+4.
Evelyn Marx
Marx presented her research on radiation in microelectronics conducted with Vanderbilt’s Institute for Space and Defense Electronics at the university’s inaugural Electrical and Computer Engineering Day on April 4. (Photo courtesy of Evelyn Marx)

This Spring, sophomore Evelyn Marx earned the Department of Defense (DoD) “SMART” (Science, Mathematics and Research for Transformation) Scholarship for her work in electrical engineering, enabling her to advance this work at the DoD. 

The SMART Scholarship is a program supporting students entering work in the U.S. Department of Defense, providing them with full tuition, an annual stipend, and guaranteed internships and post-undergraduate employment with the DoD. Marx will have the opportunity to intern in the U.S. Missile Defense Agency in Huntsville, Alabama, for the next three summers, securing a minimum three-year position with the DoD after her graduation from Vanderbilt. 

“Because I have guaranteed employment, I don’t have to worry about my source of income for now,” Marx said. “I can focus on my research, doing work to better Vanderbilt and advocating for younger women entering the field of engineering as I achieve my goals.”

Marx is double-majoring in electrical engineering and physics and is the vice president of programming of Women in Computing. She is also a member of Vanderbilt’s chapters of Zeta Tau Alpha Sorority and the Society of Women Engineers (SWE), an organization for which she heads the planning of speaker panels. Marx also conducts research for Vanderbilt’s Institute for Space and Defense Electronics’ (ISDE’s) component of SCALE (SCalable Asymmetric Lifecycle Engagement), a national consortium funded by the DoD focused on studying microelectronic systems in national defense. Specifically, Marx researches student engineering curricula in collaboration with other students from Vanderbilt and Purdue University. She presented data at Vanderbilt’s inaugural Electrical and Computer Engineering Day on April 4.

Researching for SCALE and being mentored by ISDE Associate Director Michael Alles in studying radiation in microelectronics inspired Marx to apply for the SMART Scholarship. She learned that she was a recipient of the award in early April.

“Vanderbilt Engineering hosted a Zoom webinar about this scholarship and my mentor, Dr. Alles, encouraged me to go for it,” Marx said. “I got a call to interview in late March, and the rest is history. I’m super grateful.”

Marx presenting her research on radiation in microelectronics conducted with Vanderbilt’s Institute for Space and Defense Electronics at the university’s inaugural Electrical and Computer Engineering Day on April 4.
Marx presenting her research on radiation in microelectronics conducted with Vanderbilt’s Institute for Space and Defense Electronics at the university’s inaugural Electrical and Computer Engineering Day on April 4. (Photo courtesy of Evelyn Marx)

At the Missile Defense Agency for the next three summers, she will apply her undergraduate research focus on radiation and microelectronics to defend our nation and allies from missile attacks. She also explained that she hopes to mentor and inspire young women who feel underrepresented in engineering through the program; only 21% of U.S. teenagers aged 13-18 and even fewer adult women have ever considered a career in engineering. Marx has already begun to work toward this goal through her extracurriculars.  

“In the long-term, my goal is to advocate for and inspire women, and really all young people, looking to pursue engineering,” Marx said.

Marx initially became interested in electrical engineering when she dual-enrolled at Ohio State University during her junior and senior years of high school. She said being on Ohio State’s underwater robotics team introduced her to amazing people and mentors in the field and showed her the potential for positive teamwork in engineering. 

Marx is passionate about defense technology and said she is excited to spend her early career working on it.

“I’m grateful to be given the opportunity to defend our country and to represent Vanderbilt Engineering,” Marx said.

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About the Contributor
Veronica Tadross
Veronica Tadross, Senior Staff Writer
Veronica Tadross ('25) is majoring in economics and history and minoring in Arabic in the College of Arts and Science. She is from Long Island, N.Y., and you can reach her at [email protected].
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Dawn LaFalce
1 year ago

Hooah!

L
Libby Marx
2 years ago

Great job, Evie!