Prizes & Awards
The Department of Chemistry is a dynamic place to pursue top-level research and education. The Department recognizes outstanding achievements of graduate students by awarding several prizes and awards. In addition to the public recognition of achievement, each prize carries a monetary award for the student.
THE POTTER PRIZE
Graduate students completing Ph.D. theses judged to be of outstanding merit are eligible for the Potter Prize. This prize is awarded annually to the most exceptional chemistry PhD dissertation as judged by a faculty committee. ($2,500). The 2013 Potter Prize recipient is Jinxia Fu. Her thesis was entitled "Phase Behavior and Thermodynamics of Polycyclic Aromatic Compounds and Brominated Flame Retardants." Professor Eric Suuberg of the School of Engineering was her research advisor.
THE ELAINE CHASE AWARD FOR LEADERSHIP AND SERVICE
The Chase Award recognizes the student whose extraordinary leadership and service contributions during her/his years at Brown improved the department or the academic and educational experiences of all graduate students.
Professor Dwight Sweigart was a tremendous scientist, teacher, mentor and friend to the Brown Chemistry family. His untimely passing in 2012 was an enormous loss to all. As one means to honor and remember Dwight, his students, friends and colleagues have established the Dwight A. Sweigart Travel Award. Each year, one student working in the inorganic chemistry / materials field will receive support of $1000 to attend and present her/his research at a national meeting. The winner of the Sweigart Travel Award will be selected based on presenting the best inorganic chemistry / materials poster at the Chem Department's Annual Poster Session.
THE WILLIAM T. KING PRIZE
The King Prize recognizes superior performance as a teaching assistant during the academic year. The prize is awarded annually to one or two graduate students whose efforts as a teacher and facilitator of chemical learning go beyond normal expectations. The 2012 King prize recipients are Xinxin Cheng and Kyle Totaro.
SIGMA XI AWARD
The Sigma Xi Award for Excellence in Graduate Research recognizes outstanding research accomplishments during a graduate student's career. Students in their last year of graduate study are eligible. The 2013 recipient is Xiang Sun.
VINCE WERNIG FELLOWSHIP
The Vince Wernig Fellowship is competitively awarded to one senior graduate student per year. The level of support includes stipend, tuition and health insurance for an entire academic year. The recipient will have shown excellence in research as evidenced by publications, conference participation or other research accomplishments. The 2013 Wernig Fellow is Yao Zhang.
Brown’s Department of Chemistry is a lively place for pursuing research. Numerous collaborations exist within groups at Brown University and with other institutions. Many graduate students have opportunities to even spend some time abroad on research projects with collaborators. Recent examples include interactions with scientists in Denmark, Germany, Switzerland, the Czech Republic, Iceland, South Africa, India, Japan, and China. Closer to home, students meet visitors and communicate science to their local peers in seminars and posters.
To this end, the Department hosts numerous seminars and encourages student travel to conferences:
- Named lectureships: The annual Appleton Lectures and Clapp Lectures allow the Department to invite famous scientists to Brown University. As the lectures are usually hosted over a two-day period, graduate students have an opportunity to meet the distinguished visitor. Click here to learn more about our named lectureships.
- Clapp Poster Symposium: Each fall, the department organizes the Clapp poster symposium, where graduate students showcase their work to peers in the department. A faculty committee selects the best poster for the Clapp Poster prize.
- Seminars: The Department hosts weekly seminars focused on individual disciplines, such as physical, organic or inorganic Chemistry, as well as a department-wide colloquia. The seminars allow us to learn from scientists from other institutions, and provide graduate students an opportunity to meet researchers. Click here to learn more about our seminars.