Rice students win coveted Graduate Research Fellowships from the National Science Foundation

Every year, the National Science Foundation awards Graduate Research Fellowships to senior undergrads and beginning graduate students.  These prestigious awards provide full funding for graduate school in the fields of science, mathematics and engineering.  They are one of the most coveted awards for a young scientist.  This year, two of our current students and two very recent alumna received awards.  More information on how to apply for these scholarships can be found at http://www.nsfgrfp.org/.

Elli Ronay (BSc – 2016) for “Paleogroundwater Modeling from Cave Speleothem Drip Maps Surrounding the Colorado Plateau: Implications for Uplift History”.  Elli just completed a senior honor’s thesis with Cin-Ty Lee, entitled “Identifying Ash in the Cretaceous Eagle Ford Formation: Implications for Ash Source Identification and Ash Dissolution Properties”.  She will be starting a PhD at Vanderbilt University this fall.

Maya Stokes (BSc – 2015) for “Co-evolution of river networks and life”.  She is currently a PhD student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.  Maya says “I am finishing up my first year at MIT working with Dr. Taylor Perron.  I am interested in how fluvial bedrock river networks reorganize, specifically through divide migration and stream capture. My field area will be the central and southern Appalachians, where I hypothesize, the evolution of the river network has affected the evolution of and biogeography of aquatic species. I will use a combination of remote-sensing data and fieldwork to quantify the style and extent of reorganization of river networks, and landscape evolution models to better understand the mechanisms of stream capture. For my second project prior to my general exams at MIT, I am mapping paleoshorelines of lakes on the Chilean Altiplano with Dr. David Mcgee and graduate student Christine Chen to investigate the paleohydrology of the region.”  At Rice, she completed a senior honor’s thesis with Jeff Nittrouer entitled “Synsedimentary deformation in prodelta sedimentary deposits: the role of failures in shelf to deep-water sediment transport in the Western Irish Namurian Basin”

Rachel Marzen (BSc – 2015).  Rachel is currently a PhD student at Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory at Columbia University, New York.  While at Rice, she worked with Julia Morgan on a senior honor’s thesis entitled “Modeling Effects of Cohesion on Interactions between Erosion and Exhumation in a Bivergent Origenic Wedge”

Andrew Moodie is a current PhD student at Rice, working with Jeff Nittrouer.  His NSFGRP proposal was entitled “Evaluating limitless sustainability of deltas”. Andrew states, “The sustainability of deltas is far from certain, due to a multitude of natural and anthropogenic factors. My research seeks to evaluate the Huanghe (Yellow River) fluvial-deltaic system through numerical modeling and field survey, to identify best practices for promoting long-term deltaic sustainability.”


Congratulations Andrew, Elli, Maya, Rachel!


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