Prizes, Awards and Events
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 2012 Potter Prize recipient is Sanghamitra Deb. Her thesis was entitled "Ultrafast Structural Dynamics of Flexible Rydberg Excited Molecular Systems". Professor Peter M. Weber 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. The 2012 recipient is Craig Yennie.
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 recipient are Alex MacIntosh and Zachary Piazza.
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 2012 recipient is Phoung Dau. Ms. Dau works in the research lab of Professor Lai Sheng Wang.
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 2012 Wernig Fellow is Hongwei Xu, a graduate student in the research lab of Professor Wesley Bernskoetter.
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.
- Clapp Poster Symposium: Once a year, 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.
Once they have obtained the first results in their research project, graduate students are encouraged to attend national and international conferences. In most cases, student travel is supported by a combination of funds from the Graduate School and the research group.