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Three Seniors Receive National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowships

Three Olin College seniors have won prestigious National Science Foundation fellowships for graduate school.

Annie Kroo will pursue a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering; Ava Lakmazaheri will attend Stanford for a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering and Harrison Young will attend Harvard’s Wyss Institute for a Ph.D. in Applied Sciences. Senior Paul Nadan also received an honorable mention.

The NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines who are pursuing research-based master’s and doctoral degrees at accredited United States institutions. As the oldest graduate fellowship of its kind, the GRFP has a long history of selecting recipients who achieve high levels of success in their future academic and professional careers.

“We are extremely proud of our students who have won this prestigious grant,” said Aarti Chellakere, assistant director of post-graduate planning at Olin. “Starting from their first year at Olin, all three students worked diligently towards their goal of attending graduate school by securing impressive summer research internships and planned their graduate school application process with precision.”

Ava’s research will focus on biomechatronics, specifically pertaining to the development of lower limb exoskeletons and prosthetics. “I think it is absolutely critical to approach assistive technology from a multidisciplinary mindset,” said Ava. “This fellowship will provide the flexibility I had always hoped for to pursue my research from the intersecting fields of robotics, design, psychology, and neuroscience.”

Annie will use the grant to work at the intersection of Ocean Engineering and Electrical Engineering. “I am really excited by the prospect of finding novel ways of using Electrical and Ocean Engineering to address critical problems in climate change and more generally in the environmental space,” said Annie. “Wherever I decide to go, I look forward to building upon the skills that I have learned at Olin in order to help unblock critical technologies that will help in the fight against climate change. NSF's graduate fellowship gives me the freedom to do this.”

“There is no doubt that these students will go on to make a positive difference in the world, true to Olin’s mission and vision for the future of engineering,” said Chellakere.