15 Arts and Sciences students named Presidential Fellows

January 7, 2019

15 Arts and Sciences students named Presidential Fellows

Orton Hall at dusk

Fifteen graduate students in the College of Arts and Sciences have received an autumn 2018 Presidential Fellowship, the most prestigious award given by the Graduate School at Ohio State.

Awarded each semester to graduate students of outstanding scholarship, the Presidential Fellowship gives fellows one year of full-time financial support so they can complete their dissertations or terminal-degree projects unimpeded by other duties. Fellows are nominated by graduate studies committee chairs and selected through a university-wide competition led by a faculty committee. 

Autumn 2018 Arts and Sciences Presidential Fellows include:

Samantha Carter, School of Earth Sciences

Elizabeth Griffith, advisor
Carter is studying how long-term climate changes are linked to atmosphere and ocean dynamics. Her research uses marine sediments ranging from 0-11 million years old, as well as computational techniques to track barium levels in the ocean.

Samuel Kay, Department of Geography

Max Woodworth, advisor
Kay is studying how environmentally driven policy actions in Beijing, China — specifically the development of urban greenspaces — are displacing migrants and reshaping the city both physically and socioeconomically.

Osama Khalil, Department of Mathematics

Nimish Shah, advisor
Khalil’s work is advancing the field of homogeneous dynamics, which has applications in signal processing and wireless communications systems and has yielded important insights into various math and physics subjects such as prime numbers and high-energy quantum particles.

Dan Kim, Department of Psychology

John Opfer, advisor
Kim is investigating how children and adults process visual and spatial properties of objects to compare quantities, an ability known as numerosity comparison. Her research will shed light on the cognitive processes involved in the development of this innate skill, which is an indicator of future math performance.

Stacy Kim, Department of Astronomy

Annika Peter, advisor
Kim’s dissertation will place new constraints on the nature of dark matter, which makes up the overwhelming majority of matter in the universe but remains elusive to scientists. Her research lays the groundwork necessary to quicker identify dark matter in the large-scale datasets expected from impending cosmological surveys.

Daniel Knapper, Department of English

Hannibal Hamlin, advisor
Knapper is examining the influence of Saint Paul’s epistles on drama, poetry and theological discourse during the English Renaissance from 1500-1630. His dissertation represents the first history of the reception of Paul’s rhetorical style in this period and will yield insight into how Renaissance authors read and understood biblical texts. 

Kristen Kolenz, Department of Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies

Guisela Latorre, advisor
Kolenz is examining art- and performance-based activist strategies in Guatemala City, where recent civil war, genocide and capitalist legacies have facilitated the marginalization of indigenous peoples, women and the poor. Kolenz is interested in how these demands for justice provoke a broader transformation of socio-political relations in societies marked by colonialism.

Lauren Loftus, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

Claudia Turro, advisor
Loftus is developing new compounds for photochemotherapy (PCT), a cancer treatment that has numerous advantages over conventional chemotherapies. Drugs designed for PCT only become active when irradiated with light at the tumor site, greatly decreasing the number of healthy cells killed during treatment and reducing or eliminating side effects.

Rachel Miller, Department of English

Jared Gardner, advisor
Miller is studying feminist media and mass culture in the 1990s and its close ties to the cultural narratives of girlhood, illustrating how cultural history manifested itself in this era through the figure of the teenage girl in the space of her bedroom.

Chloe Page, Neuroscience Graduate Program

Laurence Coutellier, advisor
Page’s research focuses on the cellular mechanisms of resilience versus vulnerability to chronic stress in the context of sex differences in mental health disorders. Specifically, she is testing a hypothesis that may explain why women experiencing chronic stress are more prone to developing anxiety than men experiencing chronic stress.

Eleanor Paynter, Department of Comparative Studies

Dana Renga and Amy Shuman, advisors
Paynter’s dissertation seeks to contextualize the so-called migrant crisis in Europe by exploring how emergency responses to migrant arrivals mask larger historical and cultural issues related to national sovereignty, cultural identity and racialization.

Julie Powell, Department of History

Bruno Cabanes and Alice Conklin, advisors
Powell’s research focuses on gender, technology and the body in wartime. Specifically, she seeks to understand the extent to which the rehabilitation of wounded soldiers impacted international community building and labor rights in the early 20th century.

Giorgio Sbardolini, Department of Philosophy

Stewart Shapiro, advisor
Sbardolini is exploring various theories and paradoxes in the philosophy of language and philosophical logic. His central arguments pertain to the nature of thought and to theories of semantics and meaning.

Rodney Tollerson, Department of Microbiology

Michael Ibba, advisor
Tollerson’s research centers on understanding the role of translational regulation in cellular physiology, specifically the translation elongation factor EF-P and how it is essential for allowing cellular translational machinery to keep up with protein synthesis in bacteria.

Natalia Zotova, Department of Anthropology

Jeff Cohen, advisor
Zotova’s project explores how complex economic, legal and social vulnerabilities and varied experiences of marginalization affect the mental health and well-being of recent Central Asian Muslim immigrants to the U.S.

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