Department of Physics Annual Student Awardsupdated 8/24/2017

UNDERGRADUATE AWARDS

GRADUATE AWARDS

The Barrett Prize The Buechner Student Teaching Prize
The Malcolm Cotton Brown Award The Martin Deutsch Student Award
The Philip Morse Memorial Award The Henry Kendall Teaching Award
The Joel Matthew Orloff Award The Andrew M. Lockett III Memorial Fund Award
The Order of the Lepton Award The Sergio Vazquez Prize
The 2016 Sigma Pi Sigma Inductees Other Graduate Honors & Awards
The 2016 Phi Beta Kappa Inductees  
Other Undergraduate Honors & Awards  

 

Undergraduate Awards


The Barrett Prize

The award, established by students, friends, relatives and colleagues of the late Professor Alan Barrett, honors his outstanding influence in the education of physicists and his fundamental contributions to the science and technology of astrophysics. A $1000 prize is awarded annually to a senior undergraduate or graduate in Astrophysics.

The 2017 Barrett Prize Winner - Shi-Fan Chen SB '17
Research supervisor: Robert Simcoe

Past Barrett Prize Winners

YEAR STUDENT
2017 Shi-Fan Chen
2016 Anirudh Prabhu
2015 Weishuang (Linda) Xu
2014 Katelin Schutz
2013 Edward Mazenc
2012 Renyu Hu
2011 Ashley Perko
2010 William Throwe
2009 Josiah Schwab
2008 J. Colin Hill
2007 Tucker A. Jones
2006 Emily M. Levesque
2005 Svetlin V. Tassev
2004 Laura A. Lopez
2003 Stefan W. Ballmer
2002 Joshua M. Lapan
2001 C. Adam Reynolds
2000 Jessica Lackey
1999 Eric B. Ford
1998 Edmund Mun Choong Kong
1997 James Kiger
1996 Matias Zaldarriaga
1995 Eugene Chiang
1994 Craig Weigert
1993 Uros Seljak
1992 Samuel Conner

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The Malcolm Cotton Brown Award

Awarded to a senior of high academic standing in physics who plans to pursue graduate study in experimental physics. Given in memory of Lt. Malcolm Cotton Brown, Royal Air Force, who was killed in service on July 23, 1918. The fund currently provides a prize of $1,000.

The 2017 Malcolm Cotton Brown Award Winner - Grace Zhang SB '17
Research supervisor: Suchitra Sebastian, Cambridge University

Past Malcom Cotton Brown Award Winners

YEAR STUDENT
2017 Grace Zhang
2016 Thanawuth (Atom) Thanathibodee
2015 Tamara Dordevic
2014 Ioana Zelko
2013 Qian Lin
2012 Emily Davis
  Vinay Ramasesh
2011 Emma Tolley
2010 Albert Lee
2009 Robert Moffat
2008 Ruth Shewmon
2007 Ming Yi
2006 Huanqian Loh
2005 David Lopez Mateos
2004 Zilong Chen
2003 Alexander D. Wissner-Gross
2002 Joshua M. Thompson
2001 Margaret W. Pan

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The Philip Morse Memorial Award

Awarded to a senior of high academic standing in physics who plans to pursue graduate study in physics. Given in memory of Philip Morse, MIT Professor of Physics, one of the renowned physicists of the 20th century, whose contributions spanned from basic physics to engineering. The fund currently provides a prize of $1,000

The 2017 Philip Morse Memorial Award Winner - Aashish Tripathee SB '17
Research supervisor: Jesse Thaler

Past Philip Morse Memorial Award Winners

YEAR STUDENT
2017 Aashish Tripathee
2016 Francisco Leal Machado
2015 Jordan Cotler
2014 Hrant Gharibyan
2013 Nathan Benjamin
  Wojciech Musial
2012 Longzhi Tan
2011 David Ramirez
  Jaime Varela
2010 Achilleas Porfyriadis
2009 Barry Bradlyn
2008 Thaned Pruttivarasin
2007 Tongyan Lin
2006 Philip J. Richerme
2005 Alan M. Dunn
2004 Onsi Fakhouri
2003 Philip C. Schuster
2002 n/a
2001 Aram W. Harrow

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The Joel Matthew Orloff Award

The Joel Matthew Orloff Awards were established by Dr. and Mrs. Daniel Orloff in memory of their son Joel, a physics major, who died in an automobile accident shortly after graduation from MIT in 1978. One thousand dollars is awarded to each of several physics majors in the following three categories:

  • Scholarship: Given to the student with the highest GPA in physics courses and, if a tie, the highest overall GPA.
  • Research: Given to the student with the most outstanding senior thesis.
  • Service: Given to the student with the most outstanding service to the department, Institute, or community.

The 2017 Joel Matthew Orloff Award Winners

  • Scholarship - Shi-Fan Chen SB '17
    Research supervisor: Robert Simcoe
  • Research - Kevin Zhou SB '17
    Research supervisor: Jesse Thaler
  • Service
    • Caitlin Fischer SB '17
      Research supervisor: TBA
    • Andrea Herman SB '17
      Research supervisor: TBA
    • Jeannette Maisano-Brown SB '17
      Research supervisor: TBA
    • Grace Zhang SB '17
      Research supervisor: Suchitra Sebastian, Cambridge University

Past Joel Matthew Orloff Award Winners

YEAR RESEARCH SCHOLARSHIP SERVICE
2017 Kevin Zhou Shi-Fan Chen Caitlin Fischer
      Andrea Herman
      Jeannette Maisano-Brown
      Grace Zhang
2016 Nicholas Rivera Hengyun (Harry) Zhou Nicholas Rivera
      Emmett Krupczak
      Emilio Pace
2015 Trond Andersen Alexander Siegenfeld QinQin Yu
      Thomas J. Wilason
2014 Yichao Yu Aviv Cukierman Ashley Villar
      Katelin Schutz
2013 Nityan Nair Sabrina Pasterski Kevin Singh
      Katelin Schutz
      Christie Chiu
2012 Jonathan Ng John Ruszczynski Yan Zhu
2011 Ken Van Tilburg Raghu Mahajan Fangfei Shen
      Joan C. Smith
      Nathaniel Thomas
      Yan Zhu
2010 John Sebastian Pineda William Throwe Sara Campbell
      Sukrit Ranjan
2009 Vladimir Rosenhaus Hyun Kim Anjali Tripathi
      Nantania Antler
2008 Yeming Shi Ziliang Lin J. Colin Hill
2007 Anna K. Labno Widagdo Setiawan Zachary D. Wissner-Gross
2006 Emily M. Levesque Patrick S. Varilly Anat Burger
      Alejandro Rodriguez
2005 Jeffrey C. Falkenbach Seth E. Dorfman Susanna M. Thon
2004 Yuk Yan Lam Michael J. Mortonson Daniel Garcia
      Laura A. Lopez
2003 Jeffrey B. Brock David B. Starr Terri M. Yu
2002 Stephan B. Gromell Abhinav Kumar Teresa A. Fazio
2001 Till Rosenband John B. Hough Bilge Demirkoz
2000 Mihai Ibanescu Dawen Choy Rafael Dinner
  Daniel Dwyer Humberto Valdes Gabriel Rockefeller
1999 Eric B. Ford Jeffrey C. Gore Raeghan M. Byrne
      Tanya Zelevinsky
1998 Anuranjita Tewary Jeffrey Bowers  
1997 Anna Lopatnikova Iosif L.R. Bena Evan Fortunato
      Hoko Kusumoto
1996 Marin Soljačić Tairan Wang Christopher Drew
  Yun Song Eugene Shuster  
1995 Fernando Broner Steven Johnson Teresa Lau
  Eugene Chang Eliot Quataert  
1994 Jennifer Mills    
  Dexter Mootoo    
1993 Eugene Chiang    
1992 Kevin Fahey    
1991 Bryan Smith    
1990 Michael McDermott    
  Joel Phillips    
1989 Deborah Kuchnir    
1988 Jason Crain    
1987 Christopher Carone    
1986 Mark Wang    
1985 Thomas Junk    
1984 Dinh Le    
1983 Raymond Goldstein    
1982 Mark Templer    

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The Order of the Lepton Award

Awarded to a graduating senior who best exemplifies the spirit and characteristics of MIT's Physics students. Established with gifts from alumni and friends of the Department, the Order of the Lepton embodies the community and collaboration that is one of the hallmarks of the MIT Physics Department. The fund provides a prize of $1,000.

The 2017 Order of the Lepton Award Winner - Grace Zhang SB '17

Past Order of the Lepton Award Winners

YEAR STUDENT
2017 Grace Zhang
2016 Nicholas Rivera
2015 Michael Flynn
2014 Christopher Sarabalis
2013 Rudy Tanin

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The 2017 Sigma Pi Sigma Inductees

Abdulla Alsalloum Matthew Hodel Connor Popik Chengkai Zhang
Brandon Benson Robert Jones Andres Rios Tascon Grace Zhang
Uttara Chakraborty Saarik Kalia Tomohiro Soejima Kevin Zhou
Stephen (Shi-Fan) Chen Andy (Yu-Ting) Liu Nagisa Tadjfar  
Alexander Dalzell William Moses Michael Traub  
Boryana Doyle Alana Papula Vickie Ye  

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The 2017 Phi Beta Kappa Inductees

Brandon Benson Matthew Hodel Alana Papula Nagisa Tadjfar
Uttara Chakraborty Robert Jones Connor Popik Vickie Ye
Stephen (Shi-Fan) Chen Saarik Kalia Andres Rios Tascon  
Alexander Dalzell Andy (Yu-Ting) Liu Tomohiro Soejima  

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Other Undergraduate Honors Awards

  • Abdullah Alsalloum (SB '17, Physics & Materials Science & Engineering. Thesis advisor: Michael Tarkanian) received the 2017 Outstanding Senior Thesis Award from the MIT Department of Materials Science and Engineering.
  • Uttara Chakraborty (SB '17, Physics & Electrical Engineering & Computer Science) received a 2017 National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship; a 2017 National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship; the 2017 Ida M. Green Fellowship of the MIT Office of the Dean for Graduate Education; the MIT School of Engineering's 2017 Super UROP Technical Paper Award; and inducted into Sigma Xi (Scientific Research Honor Society), Tau Beta Pi (Engineering Honor Society), and Eta Kappa Nu (Electrical Engineering & Computer Science Honor Society).
  • Cailtlin Fischer (SB '18. Academic advisors: R. Scott Kemp, Ibrahim Cisse) received a 2017 History Undergraduate Writing Prize from MIT's History Department in recognition of excellence in historical research and writing.
  • Zachary Hall (SB '18. Academic advisor: Robert Simcoe) received a 2017 History Undergraduate Writing Prize from MIT's History Department in recognition of excellence in historical research and writing.
  • William Moses (SB '17, Physics & Electrical Engineering & Computer Science; M.Eng. '17, Electrical Engineering & Computer Science) won Best Paper at the 22nd ACM SIGPLAN Symposium on Principles and Practice of Parallel Programming; received MIT's Larry G. Benedict Leadership Award for his "efforts to create a community to better student life," as well as the Robert M. Fano UROP Award for his SuperUROP research project on TAPIR.
  • Kevin Zhou (SB '17. Academic advisors: Jeremy England, Jesse Thaler) was awarded a 2017 Marshall Scholarship in support of graduate studies at the University of Cambridge, UK.

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Graduate Awards


The Buechner Student Teaching Prize

Awarded to a graduate student for outstanding contributions to the educational program of the Department during the past academic year. The $1,000 prize was established in 1987 by the late Mrs. Christina Buechner in memory of her husband Prof. William Buechner, who served as Physics department head from 1962-67.

The 2016 Buechner Student Teaching Prize Winner

  • Ivana Dimitrova (Atomic Physics - Thesis supervisor: Wolfgang Ketterle) "for her enthusiastic and effective contributions to the graduate atomic physics course 8.421"

Past Buechner Student Teaching Prize Winners

YEAR STUDENT
2016 Ivana Dimitrova
2015 Daniel Kolodrubetz
2014 Michelle Ruth Tomasik
2013 Michael Crossley
2012 n/a
2011 Chester Chu
2010 Arghavan Safavi-Naini
2009 Adrian Liu
2008 Paul Nerenberg
2007 Richard Ott
2006 Oliver Dial
2005 n/a
2004 Sebastian Franco
2003 Brice C. Smith
2002 Jeffrey Bowers
  James McBride
2001 Stephen Korbly
2000 Michael Hinczewski
  Nicholas Morgan
  David Pooley
1999 Kristin Burgess
  Rebecca Christianson
1998 Jamie Portsmouth
  Walter Rantner
1997 Andrew Berger
1996 Paul Westbrook
1995 Peter Yesley
1994 Neer Asherie
1993 Sheperd Doeleman
1992 Howard Sklar
1991 Michael Haggerty
1990 Roberta Brawer
1989 Juliana Hsu
1988 Jim Abbott
  Philipp Podsiadlowski
1987 Wayne Lewis
  Derin Sherman

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The Martin Deutsch Student Award for Excellence in Experimental Physics

Awarded to a graduate student in the mid-course of research for study in any area of physics, with preference given to experimental physics. The award was created in honor of Professor Martin Deutsch's outstanding contributions to Nuclear Physics as an educator and researcher and currently carries a prize of $1,000.

The 2016 Martin Deutsch Student Award Winners

  • Alexander Pung Ji (Experimental Astrophysics - Thesis supervisor: Anna Frebel) “for outstanding observational work on a number of topics in near-field cosmology, including taking a major step forward to solve a 60-year-old problem in nuclear astrophysics".
  • Gabriel Collin (Experimental Nuclear & Particle Physics - Thesis supervisor: Janet Conrad) "for outstanding work on global fits of sterile neutrino models to short baseline neutrino data". 

Past Martin Deutsch Student Award Winners

YEAR STUDENT
2016 Alexander Pung Ji
  Gabriel Collin
2015 Benjamin Jones
2014 Doga Can Gulhan
  Colin Kennedy
2013 Wenlen Chen
  Lawrence Cheuk
2012 Sheila Dwyer
2011 Ariel Sommer
2010 Monika Schleier-Smith
2009 Georgia Karagiorgi
  Andre Schirotzek
2008 Asher Kaboth
2007 Thomas Corbitt
2006 Gretchen K. Campbell
2005 Juan M. Pedraza
  Yong-Il Shin
2004 Adam S. Bolton
  Martin Zwierlein
2003 Aaron E. Leanhardt
2002 Lingyan Zhu
2001 Ivan Furic
2000 Ananth Chikkatur
1999 Shin Inouye
1998 n/a
1997 David Goldhaber-Gordon
  Young Lee
1996 n/a
1995 n/a
1994 Kendall Davis
1993 n/a
1992 Kevin Lee
1991 Alec Sandy
1990 n/a
1989 David Keith

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The Henry Kendall Teaching Award

Established in 2010 and named after Henry Kendall, 1990 Nobel Laureate and long-time MIT Physics faculty member, the Kendall Awards recognize graduate student teaching assistants whose performance has been significantly above what is expected of a TA. Two to four awards, each with an accompanying prize of $750, are given annually.

The Fall 2016 Henry Kendall Teaching Award Winners:

  • Anirudh Chiti (Theoretical Astrophysics - Thesis supervisor: Anna Frebel) "for going beyond the call of duty to take care of students and run things behind the scenes".
  • Byron Drury (Condensed Matter Theory- Thesis supervisor: Eric Heller and Edward Farhi) “for his work on 8.044, in which he was an amazingly successful TA and always helpful to the students".
  • Hongwan Liu (Theoretical Nuclear & Particle Physics - Thesis supervisor: Tracy Slatyer)  "for his performance in 8.033, in which he played a significant role in helping the students both to learn and to appreciate the beauty of the material”.
  • Aditya Pathak (Theoretical Nuclear & Particle Physics - Thesis supervisor: Iain Stewart)  "for his fantastic growth as a TA in 8.13".

Past Henry Kendall Teaching Award Winners

YEAR STUDENT YEAR COURSE(S)
2016-17 Anirudh Chiti Fall 2016  
  Byron Drury Fall 2016 8.044
  Hongwan Liu Fall 2016 8.033
  Aditya Pathak Fall 2016 8.13
2015-16 Benjamin Elder Fall 2015 8.251
  Nikhil Raghuram Fall 2015 8.01 & 8.02
2014-15 Richard Alexander Barbieri Fall 2014 8.03
  Adam Bookatz Fall 2014 8.05
  Alexander Pung Ji Fall 2014 8.282 & 8.284
  Janos Perczel Fall 2014 8.02
  Fangfei Shen Fall 2014 8.226
2013-14 Gregory Dooley Fall 2013 8.282 & 8.284
  Paolo Glorioso Fall 2013 8.04
  Ilkem Ozge Ozel Fall 2013 8.022
  Evangelos Sfakianakis Fall 2013 8.286
2012-13 Shawn Henderson Fall 2012 8.021
  Timothy Hsieh Fall 2012 8.511
  Jeremy Lopez Fall 2012 8.21
  Chong Wang Fall 2012 8.321
2011-12 Michael Crossley Spring 2012 8.044
  Cedric Lin Spring 2012 8.02
  Kevin Sung Spring 2012 8.011
  Tatiana Artemova Fall 2011 8.591
  Adrian Liu Fall 2011 8.942
  David Mross Fall 2011 8.231
  Anjan Soumyanarayanan Fall 2011 8.01
  Phillip Zukin Fall 2011 8.02
2010-11 Byron Drury  Spring 2011 8.311
  Jinrong Lin Spring 2011 8.022
  Leo Stein Spring 2011 8.901
  Francesco D’Eramo Fall 2010 8.09
  Nan Gu Fall 2010 8.012
  Duncan Ralph Fall 2010 8.13
  Phillip Zukin Fall 2010 8.21
2009-10 David Mross   Spring 2010 8.20
  Obioma Ohia Spring 2010 8.02
  Richard Ott Spring 2010 8.14
  Burak Alver Fall 2009 8.13
  Nabil Iqbal Fall 2009 8.02
  Daniel Sung-Joon Park Fall 2009 8.321
  Robyn Sanderson Fall 2009 8.01

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The Andrew M. Lockett III Memorial Fund Award

Awarded to a graduate student in theoretical physics, with preference given to students from Los Alamos, NM, and New Orleans, LA. The award currently carries a prize of $1,000. The award was established by Mrs. Lucille Lockett Stone in memory of her husband, Dr. Andrew M. Lockett, who received his Ph.D. in physics from MIT in 1954.

The 2016 Andrew Lockett III Memorial Fund Award Winner

  • Nicholas Rodd (Theoretical Nuclear and Particle Physics - Thesis supervisor: Tracy Slatyer) "for his noteworthy contributions to theoretical physics and your broad and deep skills and expertise".

Past Andrew M. Lockett III Memorial Fund Award Winners

YEAR STUDENT
2016 Nicholas Rodd
2015 Ian Moult
2014 Yonatan Kahn
2013 Maksym Serbyn
2012 Daniel Sung-Joon Park
2011 Xie Chen
2010 Nabil Iqbal
2009 Wing-Ho Ko
  Sergey Syritsyn
2008 Michael Kiermaier
2007 n/a
2006 Jessie Shelton
2005 David Vegh
2004 Michael A. Levin
2003 Andrew M. Childs
2002 Sebastian Franco
2001 Walter Rantner
2000 Bo Feng
1999 Leonardo Rastelli
1998 n/a
1997 Matthew Hastings
1996 Arthur Lee
1995 Ken Olum
1994 n/a
1993 n/a
1992 Catherine Trotter Wilson
1991 n/a
1990 Tomas Arias
  Jeffrey Grandy
1989 n/a
1988 Barrett Rogers
1987 Mark Needels

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The Sergio Vazquez Prize

Established in memory of Sergio Vazquez, a graduate student in the Center for Theoretical Physics who was killed in an automobile accident on April 1, 1990, $1,000 to be awarded annually to a graduate student with preference for a student from an underrepresented sector of the population who had to overcome racial, physical or financial barriers.

The 2016 Sergio Vazquez Prize Winner

  • Lina Necib (Theoretical Nuclear and Particle Physics - Thesis supervisor: Jesse Thaler) "for her impressive research portfolio in dark matter".

Past Sergio Vazquez Prize Winners

YEAR STUDENT
2016 Lina Necib
2015 Marjon Moulai
2014 Roberto Sanchis-Ojeda
2013 Wei Sun
2012 Joshua Bendavid
2011 Francesco D'Eramo
  Mohammad Faghfoor Maghrebi
2010 Christopher Jones
2009 n/a
2008 Michael Ghebrebrhan
2007 n/a
2006 n/a
2005 Antonello Scardicchio
2004 n/a
2003 Qudsia Jabeen Ejaz
2002 Kimani Stancil
2001 Grum Teklamariam
2000 Darren Segall
1999 Raissa D'Souza
1998 n/a
1997 n/a
1996 Gillian Reynolds
1995 n/a
1994 n/a
1993 n/a
1992 Hector Jimenez-Gonzalez

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Other Graduate Honors & Awards

  • Lina Necib (Theoretical Nuclear and Particle Physics. Thesis supervisor: Jesse Thaler) received a Sherman Fairchild Postdoctoral Fellowship at the California Institute of Technology.
  • Nicholas Rodd (Theoretical Particle Physics. Thesis supervisor: Tracy Slatyer) was awarded the 2017 Prize Prize in Cosmology and AstroParticle Physics of The Ohio State University for his research "on the structure and experimental signatures associated with beyond the standard model phenomena."
  • Edbert Sie (Experimental Condensed Matter Physics. Thesis supervisor: Nuh Gedik) received the 2017-2019 GLAM Postdoctoral Prize Fellowship of Stanford University.
  • Quntao Zhuang (Quantum Information. Thesis supervisor: Jefferey H. Shapiro) was awarded the 2016-2017 Claude E. Shannon Research Assistantship of the MIT Research Laboratory of Electronics.

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