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Awards and honors

Harry Tuller
Harry Tuller
Ed Boyden
Ed Boyden
Nancy Kanwisher
Nancy Kanwisher

Harry Tuller, professor of ceramics and electronic materials, received the Edward Orton Jr. Memorial Award at the Materials Science and Technology 2007 Conference and Exhibition for scholarly attainments in the ceramic or related field, where he also presented a plenary lecture. Professor Tuller is the director of the Crystal Physics and Electroceramics Laboratory in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering.

The Society for Neuroscience presented Ed Boyden, Benesse Career Development Professor and head of the MIT Media Lab's Neuroengineering and -Neuromedia Group, with a research award for innovation in neuroscience, supported by Astellas USA Foundation. This award honors imaginative, innovative research that will advance novel ideas and has the potential to lead to significant breakthroughs in the understanding of the brain and nervous system and related diseases.

Boyden received a New Innovator Award from the NIH earlier this semester.

In honor of her seminal findings in vision and brain research, Nancy Kanwisher, Ellen Swallow Richards Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience, has been named the recipient of the 2007 Golden Brain Award by the Minerva Foundation. The award, now in its 23rd year, was presented to Kanwisher during the 37th annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience.

"We have enlarged our current understanding of how the brain handles complex visual stimuli from work done by Nancy Kanwisher," said Elwin Marg, professor emeritus of vision sciences at the University of California, Berkeley and co-founder of the Minerva Foundation.

Krystyn J. Van Vliet and Kiran Kedlaya have received 2006 Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers, the nation's highest honor for professionals at the outset of their independent scientific research careers. Van Vliet, Thomas Lord Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, was nominated for the award by the Department of Defense, while Kedlaya, associate professor of mathematics, was nominated by the National Science Foundation.

 The Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers, established in 1996, honors the most promising researchers in the nation within their fields. Nine federal departments and agencies annually nominate scientists and engineers who are at the start of their independent careers and whose work shows exceptional promise for leadership at the frontiers of scientific knowledge. Participating agencies award these talented scientists and engineers with up to five years of funding to further their research in support of critical government missions.

The Center for Integration of Medicine and Innovative Technology (CIMIT) and the MIT School of Engineering has named three MIT graduate students as MIT-CIMIT Medical Engineering Fellows. Faisal Kashif, a Ph.D. candidate in electrical engineering and computer science, and Benjamin Rapoport, an M.D./Ph.D. candidate in the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology, are this year's new fellows. Olumuyiwa "Muyiwa" Ogunnika, a Ph.D. candidate in electrical engineering and computer science who received the first MIT-CIMIT Medical Engineering Fellowship last year, continues as a fellow for a second year. Intended to support research in medical science and health care, the fellowships will advance developments in assessing neuromuscular diseases, biomedical monitoring and thought-controlled prosthetic limbs.

"The MIT-CIMIT Fellowships provide important support to select graduate students who work in innovative areas of health care research," said Dean Subra Suresh of the MIT School of Engineering. "Since medicine and health care are among the most critical issues that we all face, having this new source of funding is invaluable in furthering this crucial work."

The American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) announced that the Oersted Medal has been awarded to Mildred S. Dresselhaus, MIT Institute Professor of Physics and Electrical Engineering, in recognition of her outstanding, widespread and lasting impact on the teaching of physics.

Ken Heller, chair of the AAPT Awards committee, said, "Dr. Dresselhaus is a dynamo in her support of physics in all of its aspects. Her research is on the cutting edge of materials physics."

The Oersted Medal will be presented at a ceremonial session of the AAPT winter meeting in Baltimore, Md. Following the presentation, Dresselhaus will deliver her keynote address, "Expanding the Audience for Physics Education."

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on November 28, 2007 (download PDF).

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