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NSF Announces First Cohort of Graduate Research Opportunities Worldwide Program

International research-and-education experiences in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics hold promise for students seeking to advance science globally.

by National Science Foundation
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International research-and-education experiences in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics hold promise for students seeking to advance science globally

Fifty-three graduate students working in disparate fields of science and engineering will soon begin international research experiences through the Graduate Research Opportunities Worldwide (GROW), a competitively awarded research and education program available to National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellows (GRFs).

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Through GROW, NSF is collaborating with sister agencies in 12 countries to connect NSF GRFs to strategically selected educational and research institutions abroad.

As part of a competitive process, the students submitted proposals by which their candidacy for participation in GROW would be determined through a rigorous merit-review process. A science agency in a partner country will host the students for a period of three to 12 months. While overseas, they will receive a living allowance from the host country as they pursue their research at a host institution. They are also eligible to receive an international travel allowance from NSF.

Anna Normand, a Ph.D. student and NSF Graduate Research Fellow with the University of Florida's Soil and Water Science Department is conducting research at Abisko Research Station in Sweden. As part of GROW, her research there pertains to the impact of climate change on peatland vegetation and soil composition. Photo credit: Anna Normand, University of Florida  

Some of the 53 students have already begun their travels to their host countries. Each of the students will be studying in one of the following countries: Denmark, Finland, France, Japan, South Korea, Norway and Sweden. Their fields of study range from astronomy and physics to engineering, geosciences and mathematical sciences, and social and behavioral sciences. (See list below.)

"This opportunity to collaborate with others who may have different perspectives and processes enriches the graduate education of the students participating in GROW," said NSF Assistant Director Joan Ferrini-Mundy, who leads NSF's Education and Human Resources directorate. "GROW also supports NSF's broader commitment to address the internationalization of science and engineering and to provide multiple pathways to engagement with top researchers worldwide."

The 53 students taking part in GROW have been asked to share their experiences via social media. They will be posting pictures and commentary to the NSF Facebook page and Tweeting using the hashtag #NSF_GROW.

A list of this inaugural class of GROW students, their home institutions and their fields of study follow:


Physics and Astronomy
Jerome Mlack, Johns Hopkins University


Megan Leitch, Carnegie-Mellon University

Life Sciences
Yun Tao, University of California-Davis
Kim Reuter, Temple University


Computer/Information Science/Engineering
Robert Woodward, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Whitney Lohmeyer, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Stephanie Lindsey, Cornell University
Andrew Mock, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Abigail Licht, Tufts University
Marc Perez, Columbia University
Ashley Thomson, Duke University
Whitney Coyle, Pennsylvania State University-University Park

Life Sciences
Alexandria Pivovaroff, University of California-Riverside
Hannah Marx, University of Idaho
Timothy Dunn, Harvard University

Mathematical Sciences
Andrei Tarfulea, Princeton University
Benjamin Fogelson, University of California-Davis

Social Sciences
Stefani Crabtree, Washington State University
Michael Barany, Princeton University
Jeremy Kuhn, New York University


Computer/Information Science/Engineering
Richard Veale, Indiana University

Evgueni Filipov, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Debra Hausladen, Stanford University
Brent Delbridge, University of California-Berkeley

Life Sciences
Nicholas DiRienzo, University of California-Davis
Carolyn Keogh, University of Georgia

Kathryn Jankowski, University of Oregon-Eugene

Social Sciences
Emily Sekine, New School University

South Korea

Physics and Astronomy
Calen Henderson, Ohio State University


Erich Petushek, Michigan Technological University

Life Sciences
Hannah Kinmonth-Schultz, University of Washington
John Guittar, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
Sean Maguire, University of Texas at Austin

Mathematical Sciences
Susan Wei, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Nicholas Grebe, University of New Mexico
Ryan Watson, University of Arizona
Elizabeth Canning, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Catharine Fairbairn, University of Pittsburgh


Daniel Goldman, University of California-Berkeley
Ryan O'Donnell, Johns Hopkins University
Nardine Abadeer, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Mehrnoosh Arrar, University of California-San Diego

Charles Shields, Duke University
Ryan Ziels, University of Washington
Scott Himmelberger, Stanford University

Anna Normand, University of Florida
Carl Hoiland, Stanford University

Life Sciences
John Casey, University of Hawaii
Samuel Georgian, Temple University
Aline Waguespack Claytor, Duke University
Elliot Aguilar, CUNY Graduate School University Center
Johnathon Anderson, University of California-Davis
Jennifer Lachowiec, University of Washington