13 graduate students receive Penn State Alumni Association Dissertation Award

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.

Last Updated April 28, 2016