Sixteen UNC-Chapel Hill graduate students and recent graduate alumni, within a variety of academic programs, have been selected to receive The Graduate School’s 2021 Impact Awards and Horizon Awards.
Impact Awards, made possible through the generous support of the Graduate Education Advancement Board, recognize discoveries of direct benefit to North Carolina. Horizon Awards recognize research likely to make a significant longer-term contribution to the state.
Students from 27 different academic programs were nominated this year, said Jennifer Gerz-Escandón, associate dean for interdisciplinary education and fellowship programs within The Graduate School.
“Within this group of nominees,” she added, “reviewers identified a particularly large number whose research is on the cusp of statewide impact. This demonstrates the commitment graduate students and recent graduate alumni have to advancing research that helps the people and communities of our state. More than 300 individuals have received these awards over time, and we are pleased to recognize graduate students and alumni for their important work.”
The awardees and their academic programs are:
Brittney Chesworth, doctoral student, social work, Impact Award
Sarah Donaher, recent master’s graduate, marine sciences, Impact Award
Connor Drake, doctoral student, health policy and management, Impact Award
Lauren Eaves, doctoral student, environmental sciences and engineering, Impact Award
Caroline Efird, doctoral student, health behavior, Impact Award
Shiwei Fang, doctoral student, computer science, Horizon Award
Matthew Glasscott, doctoral student, chemistry, Impact Award
Alina Hamilton, doctoral student, pathology, Horizon Award
Diamond Ebanks Holloman, doctoral student, ecology, Impact Award
Elizabeth Kamai, doctoral student, epidemiology, Impact Award
Gretchen Mason, master’s student, public health, Horizon Award
Alison Mercer-Smith, doctoral student, pharmaceutical sciences, Horizon Award
Alexandra Odom, doctoral student, history, Impact Award
Emily Ozpinar, doctoral student, biomedical engineering, Horizon Award
Gabriela Torres, doctoral student, biomedical engineering, Impact Award
Rachel Woodul, doctoral student, geography, Impact Award
Graduate students and recent graduate alumni apply for the annual awards and are nominated by their academic departments. A cross-disciplinary team of faculty members reviews the nominations and selects award recipients based on the significance of their work to North Carolina and on their ability to effectively communicate their research.