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RCSA Names 24 Cottrell Scholars for 2016

Research Corporation for Science Advancement (RCSA) announces it has named two-dozen top early career academic scientists as 2016 Cottrell Scholars.

The designation comes with a $100,000 award for each recipient for research and teaching, for a total of $2.4 million.

“The Cottrell Scholar (CS) program champions the very best early career teacher-scholars in chemistry, physics and astronomy by providing these significant discretionary awards,” said RCSA President and CEO Robert N. Shelton.

Shelton added the program is designed to foster synergy among faculty at major American research universities and primarily undergraduate institutions.

Cottrell Scholars engage in an annual networking event, providing them an opportunity to share insights and expertise through the Cottrell Scholar Collaborative. This year’s event will be held in mid-July in Tucson, Ariz., and is expected to draw about 80 top educators from around the U.S.

“Outstanding candidates are admitted to the ranks of Cottrell Scholars through a stringent peer-review process based on their innovative research proposals and education programs,” said RCSA Senior Program Director Silvia Ronco. 

This year’s Cottrell Scholars include:

Nandini Ananth, chemistry, Cornell University - Quantum Dynamic Investigations of Photo-induced Electron Transfer Catalyzed by Transition Metal Complexes

John M. Antos, chemistry, Western Washington University - Maximizing the Utility of Bacterial Sortases for Protein Modification and Undergraduate Education

Tamara Bogdanovic, astronomy, Georgia Institute of Technology - Shedding Light on Supermassive Black Holes

Eva-Maria S. Collins, physics, University of California, San Diego - Unraveling the Role of Mechanics for Tissue Self-organization in Vivo

Jahan M. Dawlaty, chemistry, University of Southern California - A New Handle in Solar-to-Fuel Light Harvesting: Creating Protons Where They are Most Needed

Rafael M. Fernandes, physics, University of Minnesota - A Tale of Two States: Interplay Between Magnetism and Superconductivity in Quantum Materials

Sergey Frolov, physics, University of Pittsburgh - Experimental Investigation of One-Dimensional Topological Phases

Sharon J. Gerbode, physics, Harvey Mudd College - Interactions between Impurities and Dislocations in Small Colloidal Crystals

Kathryn L. Haas, chemistry, Saint Mary's College - Transporting Cu(I) as Cargo and Using Cu(III) as a Killer Cofactor: Histidine-rich Motifs in Ctr1 and Histatin 5 Control Cu Oxidation State and Reactivity

Eliza Kempton, astronomy, Grinnell College - Atmospheric Structure and Emission Spectrum Calculations for Extrasolar Super-Earths: Looking Toward JWST and beyond

Dusan Keres, physics, University of California, San Diego - Using Cosmological Hydrodynamic Simulations to Constrain Evolution of Galaxies and Their Gaseous Halos

Dmytro V. Kosenkov, chemistry, Monmouth University - Exciton Energy Transfer in Light Harvesting Proteins with Covalently Bound Pigments: The Role of Molecular Vibrations

Aaron M. Leconte, chemistry, Claremont McKenna College - Biochemical Characterization and Engineering of Luciferases through Statistical Coupling Analysis

Thomas J. Maimone, chemistry, University of California, Berkeley - Redesigning Natural Products for the Treatment of Human Disease

Brent C. Melot, chemistry, University of Southern California - Design of Safe and Sustainable Materials to Enable Large Scale Energy Storage

Maiken H. Mikkelsen, physics, Duke University - Exploring the Interplay between Nanoscale Design and Optical Properties of Materials: A Research and Educational Approach

William C. Pomerantz, chemistry, University of Minnesota - Fluorinated Peptides and Proteins for 19F MRI and Integrated Research Experiences in an Organic Chemistry Lab Course

Aaron J. Romanowsky, Astronomy, San Jose State University - The Nature and Nurture of Galaxies: Dynamics, Dark Matter, and Data Mining

Michael J. Rose, chemistry, University of Texas at Austin - Imparting Precious Metal Properties to First-Row Metals with Heavy Atom Ligands, and Connecting & Encouraging Undergraduates for Outreach Activities via ‘Undergraduate Outreach Corps’

Scott K. Shaw, chemistry, University of Iowa - Characterization and Control of Molecular Architectures within Thin Fluid Films

Levi M. Stanley, chemistry, Iowa State University - Catalyst Design and Development to Unlock the Synthetic Potential of Olefin Hydroacylation Reactions

Lauren S. Waters, chemistry, University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh - Manganese Homeostasis in Bacteria:  Characterization of an Mn-Regulated Small Protein and Identification of Novel Mn Exporters

Yan Yu, chemistry, Indiana University, Bloomington - Exploiting Nanomaterials to Unravel Trafficking inside Cells

Di Xiao, physics, Carnegie Mellon University - Topological Excitonics in Gapped Dirac Materials

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