Eight engineering students receive NSF graduate fellowships

Eight current engineering graduate students have received graduate research fellowships from the National Science Foundation.

They are Meghan Bowler, Erica Curtis, Melanie Gault, Samantha Saratt and Chelsea Stowell, biomedical engineering; Kirsten Heikkinen and Richard Hendrick, mechanical engineering; and Thushara Gunda, civil and environmental engineering.

Two engineering undergraduate students who also received NSF fellowships are pursuing their graduate studies elsewhere. They are Travis Meyer, biomedical engineering, Georgia Tech, and Curtis Northcutt, computer science, MIT.

The NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) provides fellowships to individuals selected early in their graduate careers based on their demonstrated potential for significant achievements in science and engineering.

Support is provided by the program for graduate study that is in a field within NSF’s mission and leads to a research-based master’s or doctoral degree at accredited U.S. institutions. The fellowships, valued at more than $120,000 each, include $30,000 per year for three years for graduate study and $10,500 annually for three years of tuition.

Among the 2,000 2013 NSF awardees, 1,102 are women, 390 are from underrepresented minority groups, 51 are persons with disabilities, and 28 are veterans.

GRFP is a critical program in NSF’s overall strategy in developing the globally-engaged workforce necessary to ensure America’s leadership in advancing science and engineering research and innovation.

According to the NSF, “As the oldest graduate fellowship of its kind, the Graduate Research Fellowship Program has a long history of selecting recipients who achieve high levels of success in their future academic and professional careers.” Previous fellows include former U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu; Google founder Sergey Brin; and many Nobel Prize winners.