Graduate Galileo Circle Scholars for 2024

May 2, 2024
2024 Graduate Galileo Circle Scholars
Congratulations to the Galileo Circle Scholars for 2024! Our graduate students are passionate, and we invite you to read further on their current paths and research!

Anubhab Chakraborty
"My name is Anubhab, and I am a 6th year PhD student in Physical Chemistry in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Arizona. My principal field of research involves designing metal-organic solid-state systems and studying their properties at both a molecular and a macroscopic level with the broad goal of creating more energy efficient electronic devices.

Currently, I am working on surface alloy systems that exhibit Rashba spin-orbit coupling effects, which are ideally suited for applications in the emerging field of spintronics. I am planning to graduate soon and post-graduation, I would like to join organizations that address the issue of global energy crisis using technological breakthroughs on an industrial scale. I am grateful and humbled to have been selected as a recipient of the Galileo Circle Scholarship and I would like to express my deep gratitude to my parents and my advisor Dr. Oliver Monti for guiding me every step of the way."


Bai Hei
Bai completed her BS in Chemistry in 2019 at Peking University, Beijing, China, where she contributed to DNA sequence analysis and coarse-grained chromatin model in Prof. Yi Qin Gao's group. She is now a fifth-year graduate student in Dr. Steven D. Schwartz’s group. Her current research focuses on computational studies for complex systems including ionic liquids and the human cardiac myosin, aiming to illuminate the atomic structures and energetics of these vital systems.


Lindsey Holmen
"I'm Lindsey Holmen, a fourth-year graduate student working in Jeffrey Pyun's research group. I focus on synthesizing new polymers with tailored properties and exploring their applications in various fields like nanotechnology and IR device fabrication. I love being part of our interdisciplinary research team, where we collaborate closely with industrial partners and other research groups, integrating insights from various fields to tackle complex challenges and drive innovation.

I am also the president of PAWS (Program to Advance Women Scientists) where I participate and help execute outreach, professional development, and social events.
Outside of the lab, I love to spend time with my two dogs and participate in outdoorsy activities. I am grateful for having been selected as a 2024 Galileo Circle Scholar. It means a lot to me and motivates me to keep doing my best. Thank you to everyone who has supported me."


Ramandeep Kaur
"I am a 4th year graduate student in Dr. Gianetti's lab. I am originally from a small village in Punjab (India). In Gianetti's lab, my research is focused on the development of fluorinated carbenium ions and their applications in Lewis acid-assisted catalysis. In my free time, I love watching thriller movies and web series."


Christopher Marshall
"My name is Christopher Marshall, and I am a third-year graduate student in Jon Njardarson’s research group. I earned my B.S. in chemistry at the University of Arizona. Following graduation, I worked as a formulations chemist at a biotechnology company in Tucson. After working for three years, I decided to pursue a Ph.D. in organic chemistry, specializing in synthesis and the development of new synthetic methodologies."


Joohyung Park
"I was born and raised in Seoul, South Korea. I fell for science in my high school days, the quantized nature of atomic states during chemistry class mesmerized me and it led me to chemistry major at Chung-Ang University, located at the center of Seoul. Learning modern physics in my first year of college then led me to take a double major in physics, focusing on the physics of inorganic chemistry and condensed matter. Aside from classes, I also served friends and people in the department as a student representative for two years. After finishing my third year, I did my military service for two years.

Being isolated from the civilian world, I had many opportunities to look back on myself and decided to study more in graduate school. I did my master's degree in materials chemistry, mostly focusing on chemical methods to synthesize thin film transistors. My dire curiosity to study more physics then led me to study electronic structures of solid-state materials, especially in the US. There I started my new journey at the University of Arizona in Fall 2018. Working for Professor Monti, I learned how to become a critically thinking scientist, deep knowledge of physics that I hoped to learn, and I also had incredible chances to use state-of-the-art instruments around the world to study the exciting nature of quantum materials.

Teaching undergraduate students as a teaching assistant, especially 6 years of teaching the 400B courses, also made me a better educator and better mentor - and I have been proudly teaching 400B as a Distinguished TA since 2023. Overall, the journey to become a Ph.D. under Professor Monti and the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry so far made me grow up to an unsurpassed extent in my life. I aspire to continue working as a scientist; hence I look forward to becoming a postdoctoral scholar after my Ph.D."


Sammi Rokey – Michael Cusanovich Galileo Circle Scholar
Samantha graduated with her B.S. in chemistry from Illinois State University in 2020. She is currently a 4th year PhD candidate in Dr. Christopher Hulme's group. Her research specifically focuses on designing and synthesizing novel small molecule kinase inhibitors toward glioblastoma and colorectal cancer.


Annika Silverberg
"Hi! My name is Annika Silverberg, I'm a second-year graduate student in Dr. Marty's lab. I study protein-lipid interactions by developing new mass spectrometry techniques. Specifically, I'm interested in how cholesterol impacts the function of serotonin receptors. I'm hoping to go into industry after getting my PhD so I can continue developing mass spectrometry methods. In my free time, I love to read, listen to music, and relax by the pool!"


Helena Woroniecka
"As a fourth-year PhD candidate in the Charest lab, my research focuses on understanding cell signaling involved in chemotaxis in the overall context of cancer metastasis. The ultimate goal of my work is to aid in the development of chemotactic therapeutics targeting metastatic cancer cells. Post-graduation, I aim to pursue a career in science communication, driven by a broad need to bridge the gap between scientific innovation and societal understanding.

In an era marked by the spread of scientific misinformation, particularly evident during the pandemic and climate crisis, the need for accurate information dissemination is more urgent than ever. By translating complex scientific concepts into accessible language and engaging narratives, I aim to promote health literacy, foster informed decision-making, and facilitate the translation of scientific advancements into tangible societal benefits."