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25 from MIT named to Forbes 30 Under 30 lists in 2016

Students, researchers, and alumni honored in the 2016 Forbes 30 Under 30 lists showcasing America’s most important young entrepreneurs, thinkers, and leaders.
MIT affiliates were well represented in the 2016 Forbes 30 Under 30, honoring young leaders.
MIT affiliates were well represented in the 2016 Forbes 30 Under 30, honoring young leaders.

According to Forbes magazine, their fifth annual 30 Under 30 lists showcase “America’s most important young entrepreneurs, creative leaders and brightest stars” who are less than than 30 years old. Twenty-five MIT students, researchers, and alumni made the 2016 lists.

Some 600 selections covering 20 categories were whittled down from an initial screening of more than 15,000 nominations. Following are the MIT affiliates who were selected. 

Peter Bailis (Enterprise Tech)
Postdoc in the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory

"26-year-old Bailis finished his PhD in computer science at Berkeley and accepted a tenure-track assistant professor position in Stanford's computer science department, starting in fall 2016. He wrote his PhD thesis on large-scale data management and is a recipient of a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship."

Sampriti Bhattacharyya (Manufacturing and Industry)
Grad student in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and founder of Hydroswarm

“Bhattacharyya has developed underwater drones that are capable of scanning the ocean for lost planes, or measure oil spills or radiation under the sea.”

Jonathan Birnbaum ’08 (Finance)
Vice president at Morgan Stanley

“Chief operating officer of bank’s U.S. credit trading group, managing 100 bankers trading investment grade, high yield and distressed debt.”

Natalya Brikner PhD ’15, Louis Perna ’09, SM ’14 (Manufacturing and Industry)
Co-founders of Accion Systems

“Accion is working to commercialize ion propulsion technology for small satellites using a liquid ionic propellant that is non-toxic and non-explosive.”

Arnav Chhabra (Science)
Grad student with Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology

“Chhabra published his first paper in high school. He's now pursuing his PhD, and his most recent thesis is focused on building a “liver on a chip” — a miniaturized liver model scientists hope could one day replace the use of animals for disease research.”

Abe Davis (Science)
Grad student in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

“Davis is best known for the subject of his TED Talk, in which he showed that he could capture information from video based on vibrations in the room.”

Adam Elmachtoub PhD ’14 (Science)
Assistant professor at Columbia University

“Elmachtoub’s research is focused on using data science and optimizing algorithms to make businesses more efficient.”

Teasha Feldman-Fitzthum ’14 (Energy)
Cofounder of EverVest

“EverVest provides advanced software for analyzing, valuing, and financing renewable energy projects.”

Brian Fiske PhD ’15 (Healthcare)
Senior associate at Flagship Ventures

“This MIT PhD has put this technique to work making genetic alterations to cells to find proteins that can be hit with new drugs.”

Michael Grinich ’11, Christine Spang ’10 (Enterprise Tech)
Co-founders of Nylas

“While studying computer science and physics at MIT, Grinich wrote his thesis on the fundamental tools for syncing email. He founded Nylas (formerly known as Inbox), with fellow MIT alumna Spang in 2013 … Spang, who wrote the core mail synchronization engine, runs its platform team, while Grinich is CEO.”

Ben Harvatine ’12 (Healthcare)
Founder of Jolt

“Harvatine aims to catch concussions as they happen. His sensor can be attached to anything on the head — headband, helmet, hair clip — and sends feedback to smartphones in real time.”

Noel Hollingsworth ’13, MEng ’14 (Sports)
Director of data at Second Spectrum

“Hollingsworth won the 2014 Best Research Award at the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference. Almost all NBA championship contenders use his work to gain an edge.”

Steven Keating SM ’12 (Healthcare)
Grad student in the department of Mechanical Engineering

“Keating found out that he had brain cancer after volunteering for an MRI experiment … the MIT researcher wants to know: why can my doctors see my tumor genome and not me?”

Andrew Leone ’09 (Finance)
Vice president at Nomura

“Heads one of Wall Street’s biggest VIX and structured volatility market making desks.”

Andrej Lenert SM ’10, PhD ’14 (Science)
Postdoc at the University of Michigan

“One avenue of his research was to develop a hybrid solar power system, combining the best of photovoltaic and solar thermal systems without their drawbacks.”

Maxim Lobovsky SM ’11 (Manufacturing and Industry)
Co-founder of Formlabs

“Formlabs’ printers are designed to allow for more precise parts to be created for more complicated 3-D printing projects.”

Carl Schoellhammer PhD ’15 (Healthcare)
CEO of Suono Bio

“Schoellhammer, a student of MIT professors Daniel Blankschtein and Robert Langer, invented a pill that can inject drugs directly into the gastrointestinal tract. The gadget helped him win the prestigious Lemelson-MIT Student Prize.”

Harbaljit Sohal (Science)
Postdoc at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT

"Sohal's research focus is on building neural implants for the treatment of brain disorders, disability and immunodisorders. He's developed microfabrication technologies that are capable of creating small, flexible electrodes and other devices that can be more easily integrated into the body." 

Reid Van Lehn ’09, PhD ’14 (Science)
Postdoc at Caltech

“Van Lehn’s research is focused on chemically engineered nanoparticles and studying how they interact with cell membranes.”

Ari Weinstein ’17 (Consumer Tech)
Co-founder and CEO of DeskConnect

“Weinstein is now behind Workflow, an app that won Apple’s Most Innovative App award for 2015 and which generates task recipes across iPad, iPhone or Watch.”

Sajith Wickramasekara ’15 (Healthcare)
Co-founder of Benchling

“Wickramasekara has created a digital version of every scientist’s Bible: The lab notebook. The system helps researchers contextualize and collaborate on genome engineering data.”

Natasha Wright SM ’14 (Energy)
Grad student in the Department of Mechanical Engineering

“Wright’s approach to removing salt from groundwater in rural India uses electrodialysis to extract the salt out of the water, and can run on solar power.”

Matt Zitzmann ’08 (Games)
Co-founder of Kamcord

“Kamcord’s mobile application allows users to record, share and watch the games they play on their phones.”

Press Mentions


A number of MIT students, researchers and alumni have been named to Forbes’ annual “30 Under 30” list, which honors rising stars in 20 different sectors. 

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