UCI Physics Student Alexander Vasquez Wins Prestigious National Science Foundation Research Fellowship

Thursday, June 2, 2022
The National Science Foundation’s Graduate Research Fellowship (NSF GRFP) is perhaps the most prized research grant that a graduate student can receive during their career. To get one, a student must compose an application that includes not only a fine-tuned proposal describing what they plan to research, but also a personal statement that talks about who they are and why they should become a fellow.  The new fellows research everything from solutions to climate change through chemistry to cancer treatments through mathematical modeling.

Alexander Vasquez is an incoming Ph.D. student in the UCI Department of Physics & Astronomy, where he plans to concentrate in chemical, applied and materials physics. Vazquez has had an interest in physics and astrophysics for as long as he can remember, and he's following that interest into quantum science research that he hopes will improve the efficiency of solar cell devises — work that could improve solar cell technology used here on Earth as well as in space. A strong proponent of neurodiversity in STEM fields, Vasquez's undergraduate career saw him helping create NASA's Neurodiversity Network (N3) — a program that gives neurodiverse students opportunities for research and mentorship in STEM fields.  Physics Professor Luis Jauregui is Alexander's advisor.