11 Engineering Students Win 2022 NSF Graduate Research Fellowships

Cohort includes undergraduate and graduate students from all nine departments

May 09 2022 | By Allison Chen
Headshots of 2022 NSF Graduate Research Fellows

Top row (L-R): Cole James Allan ’21, Christine Ye Shu Blackshaw ’21, Sarah Hancock ’21, Ayah Hassan ’18. Middle row (L-R): Joseph T. Lee ’21, Isabella Leite ’22, Kaylo Littlejohn ’20. Bottom row (L-R): Anushka Murthy ’22, Amey Praveen Pasarkar ’22, Yongpeng Tang ’18, Miranda Wang ’22.

Eleven students from all nine departments of the School have won 2022 National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowships. The fellowships were awarded by the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program (NSF GRFP), the oldest graduate fellowship of its kind.

The 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.

Fellows are awarded a three-year annual stipend of $34,000 and a $12,000 education allowance paid to their chosen institution. Past fellows include many Nobel Prize winners, Google founder Sergey Brin, and Freakonomics co-author, Steven Levitt.

The Engineering cohort includes:


Cole James Allan ’21

Cole James Allan received his BS from Columbia in mechanical engineering in 2021. While at Columbia, he performed research on myosin networks and their roles in morphogenesis in Professor Karen Kasza’s Living Materials laboratory.


Christine Ye Shu Blackshaw ’21

Christine Blackshaw received her BS in civil engineering and a minor in earth and environmental engineering from Columbia in 2021. She worked with civil engineering faculty, including Professor George Deodatis on modeling hurricane induced flooding in NYC’s subway system and Professor Marco Giometto on incorporating urban trees into computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations. She is currently a first year PhD student at Princeton in the civil and environmental engineering department.


Sarah Hancock ’21

Sarah Hancock received her BS in computer science from Columbia in 2021. She is currently a PhD student at Harvard University in the atmospheric chemistry modeling group in the Department of Environmental Science and Engineering.


Ayah Hassan ’18

Ayah Hassan received a BS degree in chemical engineering with a minor in sustainable engineering from Columbia in 2018. While at Columbia, she performed research in Professor V.Faye McNeill’s laboratory, which focuses on research relating to atmospheric chemistry, air quality, and atmospheric aerosols. She is currently a senior air quality consultant for Ramboll.


Joseph T. Lee ’21

Joseph T. Lee received his BS degree in applied physics from Columbia in 2021, where he is currently pursuing his PhD in physics.


Isabella Leite ’22

Isabella Leite is currently an undergraduate senior studying biomedical engineering and minoring in applied mathematics. While at Columbia, she performed research in the Laboratory of Synthetic Human Organogenesis under Professor Mijo Simunovic.


Kaylo Littlejohn ’20

Kaylo Littlejohn received his BS in electrical engineering from Columbia in 2020. While at Columbia, he worked under the direction of Dr. Paul Sajda, where he created virtual reality 3D environments and image processing software for non-invasive brain machine interface experiments. He is currently a PhD student in the electrical engineering and computer sciences at University of California–Berkeley.


Anushka Murthy ’22

Anushka Murthy is currently an undergraduate senior studying applied mathematics. Her research focus is in probability theory and its connections with analysis and discrete math. At Columbia, she did an integrable probability research project in the mathematics department with Evgeni Dimitrov, where they studied the one point marginals for the height function of ASEP started from half-flat initial conditions. She will begin her PhD studies in mathematics at Stanford this fall.


Amey Praveen Pasarkar ’22

Amey Praveen Pasarkar is currently an undergraduate senior studying operations research. While at Columbia, he worked with Professor Itsik Pe'er in the Department of Computer Science on using machine learning methods to understand the complexities of the microbiome.


Yongpeng Tang ’18

Yongpeng Tang received his BS in operations research from Columbia in 2018. He is currently pursuing his PhD in industrial engineering at the University of Southern California. His research interests include optimization and causal inference.


Miranda Wang ’22

Miranda Wang is currently an undergraduate senior studying biomedical engineering. Her interests include tissue engineering, biotechnology, and synthetic biology.

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