Hertz Awards 2012 Go to “Gifted Young Leaders” in Science, Engineering

The Hertz Awards are surely among the most prestigious academic awards that a student can earn: only 15 are awarded each year, chosen from 600 highly-qualified applicants, and the awards have a five-year monetary value of $250,000.

The Hertz Foundation says that its fellowships for “gifted young leaders” are “considered to be the nation’s most generous support for graduate education in the applied physical, biological, and engineering sciences,” and you can, so to speak, take that to the bank.

Fellows have the freedom to innovate in their doctoral studies without university or research restrictions. “The Hertz Foundation nurtures these remarkable scientists and engineers as they develop and explore their genius,” said Foundation President Dr. Jay Davis. “We help genius find itself.”

The Livermore, California Foundation says that for “nearly a half century, the Hertz Foundation has fostered the scientific and engineering strength of the nation by finding the best and brightest from those disciplines. During the past decade, there has been a major shift of the candidates towards those who apply physical and computational tools to the problems of biomedicine and health.”

The Foundation noted that at least 30 students were worthy of the awards, but funding required keeping the total actually awarded to 15. The Foundation plans to extend its fund-raising efforts to provide additional support.

Included in this 50th cadre of Hertz Fellows (2012) are six students from public universities, including four from the universities whose honors programs we follow. Three of these are present or former students in honors programs: Anjali Datta, University of Texas Plan II-Engineering Program; Grant Newton Remmen, University of Minnesota Honors Program; and Yun William Yu, General and Departmental Honors, Indiana University. Kelly Dare Moynihan is a Distinguished College Scholar in Engineering at the University of Texas.

The cadre for 2011 included students from Georgia Tech, the University of Kansas, and the University of Wisconsin.

Here is the complete list of 2012 winners:

Cheri Marie Ackerman, Chemistry, University of California, Berkeley
Nicholas Ranieri Boyd, Computer Science University of California, Berkeley
Allen Yuyin Chen, Bioengineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Anjali Datta, Electrical Engineering, University of Texas, Austin
Arvind Kannan, Chemical Engineering, California Institute of Technology
Brian Lawrence, Mathematics ,California Institute of Technology
Max Nathan Mankin, Chemistry, Harvard University
Kelly Dare Moynihan, Biomedical Engineering, University of Texas
Austin Vyas Ramanan, Bioengineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Grant Newton Remmen, Physics/Astrophysics, University of Minnesota
Jonathan Robert Russell, Biotechnology, Harvard University
Jacob Noah Steinhardt Computer Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
James Ryan Valcourt, Quantitative Biology/Bio-Engineering, Princeton University
Christian T. Wentz, Bioengineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Yun William Yu Applied Mathematics Indiana University, Bloomington