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2015 Undergraduate Research Scholarship Winners Announced

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Posted on October 8, 2015 - 4:47pm

The Origins Project is excited to announce the winners of the inaugural Undergraduate Research Scholarship. These scholarship funds for joint research projects between ASU undergraduates and their faculty mentors consist of a $5,000 research fund for both the student and their mentor, for a total of $10,000 awarded per project.

These scholarships help ASU undergraduates to explore foundational questions as they pursue their studies, and encourage new research opportunities in forefront areas of interest across the full spectrum of scholarly activity associated with origins. Winning projects were selected from a highly competitive pool, and feature students from a variety of majors across campus. This scholarship funding has been generously provided by the Epstein VI Foundation.

Applications for the 2016-2017 Undergraduate Research Scholarship will open in May 2016. This award is one of many awards and scholarships the Origins Project has available to students, researchers, and scholars. For more information visit origins.asu.edu/prizes-scholarships.

Undergraduate Research Scholarship Winners 2015-2016:

Michael Busch, BS Earth and Space Exploration, Astrophysics

Mentor: Associate Professor Judd Bowman 
Project Title: Enabling a New Window on the Earliest Astrophysical Structures from the Dark Ages, First Light, and Reionization
Michael Busch studies Experimental Cosmology and aids in the creation of the tools and methods to study Cosmic Dawn and the Epoch of Reionization. 


Alexi Choueiri, BS Economics & BS Biochemistry

Mentor: Assistant Professor Jason Newbern
Project Title: The Role of STK11/LKB1 Protein Kinase in the Development of Cortical GABAergic Circuits
Alexi Choueiri researches the molecular mechanisms of neural circuit formation and the genetics of stimulated neurons of the brain. He plans to pursue a PhD in neurobiology.


Aditya Dhumuntarao, BS Physics & BS Mathematics

Mentor: Associate Professor Maulik Parikh
Project Title: Quantum Matter Coupling to Classical Gravity
Aditya Dhumuntarao’s research interests primarily reside in theoretical physics with an emphasis in high energy physics and gravity.


Alexandra Norwood, BA Anthropology & BS Geological Sciences

Mentor: Professor Michael E. Smith
Project Title: Origins of Public Spaces in the Earliest Cities
Alexandra Norwood’s research interests include how people define and adapt to their physical environments and the rise of social complexity. 


Nitish Peela, BSE Biomedical Engineering

Mentor: Assistant Professor Mehdi Nikkhah
Project Title: A Novel Three-dimensional Tumor Model to Spatially Assess Cancer Cell-signaling
Nitish Peela’s research looks at multiple disciplines (mechanical, chemical, and biological) to create three-dimensional disease models that can better elucidate novel mechanisms of disease.


ASU News: Origins Project awards $50K to outstandig undergraduates, faculty mentors