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Four Engineering Physics graduates receive NSF research fellowships

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Left to Right: Nina Andrejevic, Matthew Siebert, Alison Rugar, and Sophie Crisp.

AEP Engineering Physics graduates Nina Andrejevic ’16, Matthew Siebert ’16, Alison Rugar ’17, and Sophie Crisp ’18, were announced this month as recipients of 2018 National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowships.

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. For the 2018 competition, NSF received over 12,000 applications, and made 2,000 award offers. 

Andrejevic is currently a graduate student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology pursuing a Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering. She works with Professor Mingda Li's research group to understand the role of defects on materials' functional properties and how they may be engineered to influence electronic structure, optical properties, or superconductivity to improve a material's functionality in various applications, from microelectronics to thermoelectrics. To do this, the Li Group uses theoretical methods by developing quantum field theories of extended defects, as well as experimentally by studying exotic lattice, electronic, and magnetic excitations in emerging quantum materials using neutron and x-ray spectroscopies.

Siebert is currently a second-year graduate student in the Astronomy and Astrophysics Department at UC Santa Cruz, primarily working in the field of observational transient astronomy with Ryan Foley’s group. Siebert’s current work involves using the spectral properties of Type Ia Supernovae to constrain dark energy, as well as in the field of multi-messenger astrophysics. Recently, the Foley Group at Santa Cruz discovered the first optical counterpart to a gravitational-wave source.

Rugar is a first-year student in the Applied Physics Ph.D. program at Stanford University. Together with the research group of Professor Jelena Vuckovic, she is working on quantum nanophotonics with color centers in diamond. 

Crisp is attending UCLA for a Ph.D. in Physics, working in experimental plasma with Professor Walter Gekelman.

For more information about NSF Graduate research fellowships, please visit:




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