On Wednesday May 28th we had a small celebration for our ScienceLine and MRL award recipients for the school year 2013-2014. We also celebrated the generous volunteers who dedicate their time to participate in our outreach programs here at the MRL. We were delighted to meet and talk to these wonderful scientists who make a difference in our young students’ lives.
From left to right Weikang Sun. Weikang is investigating hybrid organic-inorganic materials for high-performance solar cell fabrication, advised by Profs. Gui Bazan and Ed Kramer. When not doing research, he enjoys swimming, soccer, and visual effects film-making. Leah Kuritzky. Leah is a PhD student in the Materials Department. She researches the electronic materials that are at the core of LEDs and laser diodes in the visible light spectrum. Her work is particularly focused on blue light emitting devices that have applications ranging from high quality displays and projectors to white lighting for indoor illumination. Outside of school, Leah enjoys playing the violin, especially in piano duets with friends at her house. She loves nature and animals down to all the little wormies, and tries to spend a lot of time outside. Priyanka Shindgikar. Priyanka is a third year Cell and Developmental Biology major. Outside of ScienceLine, she writes for the Daily Nexus, is External Vice President for a South Asian organization (UCSB Indus), and interns at St. John's Regional Medical Center. She is also an Undergraduate Research Assistant at Proulx Lab where she studies fitness trade-offs in various yeast strains. Graham Hagen-Peter. Graham a geologist and geochemist interested in tectonic processes in a broad sense. Graham studies the roots of ancient eroded mountain belts to learn about the metamorphic and igneous processes that occur far beneath the surface of modern mountain belts. Most of his work is in the Transantarctic Mountains of Antarctica. Rocks that formed at depths of 10−20 km around 500 million years ago are now at the surface, providing a "snapshot" of the inner workings of a mountain belt that probably looked something like the modern day Andes of South America. Studying the age and source of rocks in the Transantarctic mountains tells us about the timescales of tectonic processes and how crust grows and evolves during mountain building events. When not doing geology, Graham enjoys trail running, biking, swimming tennis, and COOKING! Carol Tsai. Carol is a graduate student in the Fredrickson group, where they perform computer simulations to study block copolymers. Specifically, Carol is interested in using biologically-inspired search algorithms as a way of determining the stable phases of block copolymers. The hope is that by doing so, Carol and her group can eventually facilitate and expedite the discovery of new materials with a broad range of applications.