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BVU Record-Setter Embraces Research Fellowship

July 21, 2021 6:45am

Greg Tystahl went from breaking a Buena Vista University school record to boarding a plane for a prestigious summer internship in Florida.

Prior to those springtime duties, the computer science major had final exams, a sprint to the finish of another sort.

Tystahl, who set the BVU standard of 15:14.35 in the 5,000 meters during the American Rivers Conference track and field meet, serves in a National Science Foundation Research Experiences for Undergraduates position this summer at Florida Atlantic University, immersing himself in machine learning and physics-informed machine learning. The fellowship comes with a $5,000 stipend, additional meal allowance, and free housing.

“It’s a competitive application process,” says Tystahl, who earned the post last summer only to see it cancelled during COVID-19. Tystahl applied for the 2021 fellowship and earned it, another experiential learning accomplishment for the Iowa Falls native who hopes to one day work in cyber security.

“If all goes well, I should be able to be a part of the published work accomplished here this summer,” says Tystahl, a mathematics minor. “That may help set me apart as I apply for graduate school admission. It will also be an experience that will look good to my future employers.”

When not involved in research work, Tystahl has gone snorkeling in the Atlantic Ocean. He’s also been able to train in the Florida heat and humidity, which he says is a bit different from the typical Iowa summer.

His summer on the Atlantic coast should set him up for the Fall Semester, both athletically and academically, two ends of the undergraduate experience he’s been thankful to enjoy as a BVU Beaver.

“Getting the opportunity to continue my career in track and field was a plus in choosing BVU,” he says. “The computer science experience and working with our professors has been great. The personal projects and research experiences like this have been very rewarding, especially when so much of it, things like costs and arranging logistics, were taken care of by BVU, giving me more time to focus on the work that will help me in graduate school and as an employee.”

(credit to Tim Gallagher)