Ethan Lake, an undergraduate student in physics and math at the University of Utah, has received the prestigious and highly competitive Hertz Fellowship, a $250,000 grant for up to five years of graduate study in the STEM fields. Lake is one of only 12 students nationally to receive this award and the second Hertz Fellow for the U. The first Hertz fellow was in 1989, when Eric Kelson received the award.
“Ethan’s receipt of the Hertz Fellowship has opened the door for other U students to follow in his footsteps,” said Ruth Watkins, senior vice president for Academic Affairs at the U. “We have no doubt Ethan will continue to make a significant contribution to research and be an excellent representative of our university and state.”
The University of Utah has awarded formal recognition to the Consortium for Dark Sky Studies (CDSS), the first academic center in the world dedicated to discovering, developing, communicating and applying knowledge pertaining to the quality of the night skies.
The CDSS is an interdisciplinary, multi-institutional research group based in the College of Architecture and Planning at the U. The consortium of over 25 university, industry, community and governmental partners will research the global issue of light pollution, and the public health, economic and environmental impacts of the so-called “disappearing dark.”
Pearl Sandick, Assistant Professor of Physics and Astronomy, is attempting to unravel the mystery of the dark matter in the Universe.
“I work on theoretical particle physics – mainly models of new physics that can help explain dark matter, which is known to exist from its gravitational interactions but is otherwise a complete mystery,” says Sandick.
Nearly 85% of the matter in the Universe is so-called dark matter, with the rest being normal matter, the stuff that makes up planets and stars.
Assistant Professor Inese Ivans has received the the 2016 College of Science Award for Fostering Undergraduate Research Excellence, for her ongoing contributions as a research mentor to undergraduate students. This special award recognizes a tenure-line faculty member for excellence in fostering undergraduate research and promoting experiential learning. The winner of this award receives $20,000 to fund the awardee’s research project. These funds include support for enrolled undergraduate research assistants pursuing a degree in Science or Math.