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Clare Heinbaugh

Stamps 1693 Scholar

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Springfield, VA (Thomas Jefferson HS for Science & Technology)

Areas of Interest

Computer Science and Physics

Why W&M

Over the past four years, I have attended a STEM high school. The emphasis on science and math seeped into every aspect of my high school career to the point that my AP German class presented skits about the environment at the annual science symposium. During the first lunch of the 1693 Finalist Weekend, I was seated with three current scholars. Over smoothies and sandwiches, we discussed the religious portrayal of ancient Roman queens and, for the first time, I was surrounded by people interested in disciplines beyond LR-circuits and Lenz’s Law.

Outside of high school, I loved participating in activities that involved building relationships with others, from singing in my church youth band to rowing on the crew team. In my science and math studies, I felt that the missing piece was the people. People shape the problems that researchers, engineers, and inventors strive to solve. People transcend if-then code blocks and free body diagrams to give meaning for why we study science. I chose William & Mary because I believe its liberal arts approach to education provides the most well-rounded, people-focused perspective for furthering my STEM education.

When I visited large research universities and asked about doing my own research, I was met with confused looks and reassurance that I could help a professor with his or her research. When I attended the 1693 Finalist Weekend, Dan Cristol emphasized how William & Mary provides a haven for students to pursue their own research with facilities to support their interests. In every capacity, the professors and students I met wanted to know how they could help further my interests and provide opportunities to grow. The people are the reason I chose William & Mary. I know their passions and determination will inspire me over the next four years. 

W&M Activities
  • Developer Student Club, Founder 
  • Team lead for GeoLab research project assessing road quality with convolutional neural networks
  • MindVersity, Technical Director
  • Black Cape intern
  • Consulting projects with the Center for Geospatial Analysis
  • Hackathons at VCU, UMD, and Georgetown
  • Society of Physics Students
  • Griffin Bhangra dance team (first-year)
Summer 2020
  • Black Cape software development internship
  • Capitol Building Supply computer science consulting internship
High School Activities
  • Student Ambassadors
  • Thomas Jefferson Partnership Fund intern
  • Science fair research projects
  • Central Union Mission Rockathon fundraiser organizer
  • Girls Excelling in Math and Science (GEMS) president
  • Captain of varsity crew team
  • Captain of JV basketball team
  • Golf team
  • Bible study leader
  • Morning announcements
Awards / Distinctions
  • National Merit Scholarship Winner
  • Top awards in ISEF state and regional science fairs
  • Top German 3 Speaker in Virginia and Level 3 Gold Presidential Honor Award