13 graduate students receive Penn State Alumni Association Dissertation Award

April 28, 2016 [Read the article on Penn State News]

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Thirteen graduate students received the Penn State Alumni Association Dissertation Award, Distinguished Doctoral Scholar Medal in recognition of their outstanding professional accomplishment and achievement in scholarly research in any of the disciplinary areas of fine arts and humanities; social sciences — applied and basic; physical and computational sciences — applied and basic; life and health sciences; and engineering. The graduate students were honored during the inaugural Graduate Student Awards Luncheon held on April 27 at the Nittany Lion Inn.

The Penn State Alumni Association Dissertation Award, considered to be among the most prestigious available to Penn State graduate students, provides funding to full-time research doctorate students who have passed their comprehensive examinations and have received approval of their dissertation topic.

Award recipients and their programs of study are:

Mohammadreza Aminikashani, doctoral candidate in electrical engineering

Amin Azizi, doctoral candidate in materials science and engineering

Ajit Balram, doctoral candidate in physics

Laura M. Brown, doctoral candidate in English

Alexandra M. Garvin, doctoral candidate in physiology

Po-Hsun Huang, doctoral candidate in engineering science and mechanics

Brynne D. McBryde, doctoral candidate in art history

Gail L. McCormick, doctoral student in ecology

Brandon McDaniel, doctoral candidate in human development and family studies

Varun Vijay Prabhu, doctoral candidate in molecular medicine

Adriana M. Reyes, doctoral candidate in sociology with a dual title in demography

Thomas F. Waddell, doctoral candidate in mass communications

Lei Zhang, doctoral candidate in biology

Each student received a $5,000 award and was recognized at the Graduate School Alumni Society’s Recognition Dinner on March 19. Funds for these awards were made possible by a gift from the Penn State Alumni Association.

More information about the Penn State Alumni Association Dissertation Award Distinguished Doctoral Scholar Medals is available on the Graduate School’s website.