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Student Spotlight


Click here to view past recipients for all award programs below.

Bruno Zimm Award

The Bruno Zimm Graduate Award is named for UC San Diego Professor of Chemistry Bruno Zimm, a pioneer in the study of the biophysical properties of nucleic acids and proteins. The award is given to a full-time Ph.D. student whose research is in the area of physical chemistry, planetary chemistry, or cosmo-chemistry, and whose research is exceptionally meritorious and particularly deserving of recognition. The award is made possible through a gift from Larry S. Millstein, Ph.D. (Chemistry, '87), and his wife Robin Taylor.

Congratulations to the 2020-21 Bruno Zimm Award Recipient!

Ray Berkeley

Debelouchina Lab)

Teddy Traylor Awards

This merit-based award is to recognize research excellence and was set up by Dr. Traylor's colleagues and friends to honor his memory. The $3000 award is used to assist bright, young investigators to pursue their studies and to travel to scholarly meetings. 

Congratulations to the 2020-21 Teddy Traylor Award Recipients!

Ruben Elias

(Deshmukh Lab)

Jessica Geisenhoff

(Schimpf Lab)

Kenneth Han



Mariam Salib

(Molinski Lab)


Ryjul Stokes

(Cohen Lab)


Chancellor's Dissertation Medal

Recipients of this prestigious award are chosen based upon the quality of academic research as determined by the impact of the research to the field and/or department; the insight, originality, and creativity shown by the author; the effectiveness of the writing, clarity, and organization of the thesis; and the soundness of the methodology and quality of the data (when applicable).

Congratulations to the 2021 Chancellor's Dissertation Medal Recipient!

Jesse Peltier

(Bertrand Lab)

Friends of the International Center Fellowship

Founded in 1961, the Friends of the International Center (Friends) Fellowship supports international education at UCSD in numerous ways, one of which is raising money for and awarding student scholarships. The fellowship awards a stipend of $2,000 to a selected number of oustanding graduate students. 

Congratulations to the 2021 recipients!

Lisa Liang

(Corbett, Devaraj and Yeo Labs)

Stella Seo

(Cohen Lab)

Anand Ojha

(Amaro Lab)

Distinguished Graduate Student Fellowship

The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry established the Distinguished Graduate Student Fellowship to recognize research excellence. This prestigious fellowship provides one quarter of fellowship support (stipends and fees), as well as an additional $3,000 bonus for the Fellow to use towards research support.

Congratulations to the 2020-21 recipients!

Kyle Angle
(Grassian Lab)
Abigail Dommer
(Amaro Lab)
Matthew Du
(Yuen Zhou Lab)
Madison Edwards
(Joseph Lab)
Chris Miller
(Kubiak Lab)
Kartik Rallapalli
(Paesani Lab)
   Hannah Rutledge
(Tezcan Lab)
Ryjul Stokes
(Cohen Lab)

Lattimer Award

The Lattimer Award is given to an outstanding graduate student who seeks interdisciplinary approaches to problem solving and has a strong commitment to education. Recipients not only demonstrate promise as a stellar scientist or mathematician, but also impact others through mentorship, service, and educational outreach. 

Congratulations to the 2020-21 Recipients of the Lattimer Award!

Bo Xiang

(Xiong Lab)

Mariam Salib

(Molinski Lab)


J. Yang Scholarship Program

We proudly announce that Chinghwa Ho (Paesani group) has been selected as the recipient of the 2020-21 J. Yang Scholarship Award!

Congratulations, Chinghwa!


American Heart Association Predoctoral Fellowship

We proudly announce that Connie Torres-Paris (Komives group) has been selected as the recipient of the 2020 American Heart Association (AHA) Predoctoral Fellowship!

Congratulations, Connie!


 Connie Torres-Paris

(Komives Lab)

Ford Predoctoral Fellowship

We proudly announce that the Ford Foundation and National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine have selected Carlos Vasquez (Komor group) as the recipient of the 2020 Ford Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship!

Congratulations, Carlos!


 Carlos Vasquez

(Komor Lab)

NSF Graduate Research Fellowships

We proudly announce that the National Science Foundation has selected Ke'La Kimble (Prather Lab) from the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry as a recipient of the 2021 Graduate Research Fellowship!

Congratulations Ke'La!








Ke'La Kimble

(Prather Lab)


Congrats to the following students for begin selected as honorable mentions for the NSF GRFP: Lannah Abasi, Sally Burke, Adarsh Balaji, Krista Balto, Alysia Kohlbrand, Dylan Mills, Conor O'Herin, & Emily Pool. 

Friends of the International Center Fellowship

Founded in 1961, the Friends of the International Center (Friends) supports international education at UCSD in many ways, one of which is awarding student scholarships. Recipients of the Friends of the International Center Fellowship are students who promote international friendship, understanding, and cooperation in a meaningful way. 

Congratulation to Meihan Li on being selected as a 2019-2020 recipient of the Friends of the International Center Fellowship!


              Meihan Li 

             (Yang Lab)

Teaching Excellence Awards

We are pleased to announce the recipients of the Teaching Assistant Excellence Awards. The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry bestows these awards quarterly in recognition of superior performance by teaching assistants.

Congratulations to the Winter 2021 recipients of the TA Excellence Award!

  Liana Alves  

Liana Alves

Chem 7L Leigh

(Schimpf Lab)

Tiziano Bassi 

Tiziano Bassi

Chem 43A Weizman

(Toor Lab)

Kevin Braza 

Mac Kevin Braza

Chem 6C Ghosh

(Amaro Lab)

Cyrus DeRozieres 

Cyrus De Rozieres 

Chem 7L Leigh

(Joseph Lab)   

Taryn Lucas

Taryn Lucas

Chem 43A Weizman

(Godula Lab) 

Desirae Mellor

Desirae Mellor

Chem 40B Burkart

(Burkart Lab) 

Kevin Sweeney

Kevin Sweeney

114A Muller 

(Muller Lab)

Patrick Yorkgitis

Patrick Yorgitis

43A Weizman 

(Bertrand Lab)



Click here to view previous TA Excellence recipients

Bouchet Graduate Honor Society Chapter

The Bouchet Graduate Honor Society Chapter here at UCSD recognizes students who demonstrate academic and personal excellence, passion to foster an environment of support and to serve as examples of scholarship, leadership, character, service and advocacy for students who have been traditionally underrepresented. All in honor of Dr. Alexander Bouchet who embodied such qualities and was the first African American doctoral recipient in the United States.

Congratulations on being selected to be a member of the Bouchet Graduate Honor Society Chapter (2020)!

              Jesse Peltier
             (Bertrand Lab)