Graduate Studies

Current Students

AS&E Outstanding Dissertation Awards


2016-2017


Humanities and Humanistic Social Sciences

Winner: Matthew Bayne, English, “Tarrying with Useless Things: Reparative Readings of Victorian Social Inequality” (Advisors: Bette London and Supritha Rajan)

Commendation: Mitchell Gruber, History, “The Degration of the Food Retail Landscape” (Advisor: Thomas Slaughter)

Social Sciences

Winner: Michael Gibilisco, Political Science, “Three Essays on Political Economy” (Advisor: Anastassios Kalandrakis)

Commendation: Marc Jambon, Clinical and Social Sciences in Psychology, “Moral Judgements and Aggression in Young Children: A Social Domain Approach to Conceptualizing Individual Differences in Early Moral Understanding” (Advisor: Judi Smetana) 

Natural Sciences

Winner: Xiao Tian, Biology, “Identification of Longevity and Cancer Resistance Mechanisms in Long Lived Rodent Species” (Advisor: Vera Gorbunova)

Commendation: Dave Kleinschmidt, Brain and Cognitive Sciences, “Perception in a Variable but Structured World: The Case of Speech Perception” (Advisor: Florian Jaeger)

Engineering and Applied Sciences

Winner: Justin Schultz, Optics, “Singular Atom Optics Via Stimulated Raman Interactions in Spinor Bose-Einstein Condensates” (Advisor: Nicholas Bigelow)

Commendation: Andrew Shubin, Biomedical Engineering, “Poly (Ethylene Glycol) Hyrdogels for Salivary Gland Regeneration” (Advisor: Hani Awad)


2015-2016


Humanities and Humanistic Social Sciences

Winner: Ryan Cranmer Conrath, Visual and Cultural Studies, “Bodies in Between: The Corporeal Poetics of Montage” (Advisor: Rachel Haidu)

Commendation: Nikolaus Wasmoen, English, “Editorial Modernism: Eliot, Moore, Pound” (Advisors: Morris Eaves and Bette London)

Social Sciences

Winner: William Spaniel, Political Science, “Bargaining over the Bomb: The Successes and Failures of Nuclear Negotiations”(Advisor: Randall Stone)

Commendation: Rochelle F. Hentges, Clinical and Social Sciences in Psychology, “Toward Greater Specificity in Identifying the Developmental Consequences of a Risky Temperamental Phenotype: An Evolutionary Perspective” (Advisor: Patrick Davies) 

Natural Sciences

Winner: Anthony Geneva, Biology, “Integrative Analyses of Speciation in Anolis Lizards” (Advisors: Richard Glor and Daniel Garrigan)

Engineering and Applied Sciences

Winner: Jonathan Langdon, Biomedical Engineering, “Development of Single Track Location Shear Wave Viscoelasticity Imaging for Real-Time Characterization of Biological Tissues” (Advisor: Stephen McAleavey)

Commendation: Naim Iftekhar, Computer Science, “Unsupervised Alignment of Natural Language with Video” (Advisor: Daniel Gildea)

Commendation: Robin Sharma, Optics, “In vivo Two Photon Ophthalmoscopy” (Advisors David Williams and Jennifer Hunter)


2014-2015


Humanities and Humanistic Social Sciences

Winner: Kyoung-Lae Kang, Visual and Cultural Studies, “Guilt Cinema: Memory, Boundaries, and Ethical Criticism in Postcolonial Korea” (Advisor: Sharon Willis)

Commendation: Jeffrey R. Ludwig, History, “Christopher Lasch: A Life, Volume One: History as Social Criticism” (Advisor: Robert Westbrook)

Social Sciences

Winner: Miguel Rueda, Political Science, “Three Essays on Electoral Manipulation” (Advisor: Gretchen Helmke)

Commendation: Heng Liu, Economics, “Essays on Dynamic Mechanism Design” (Advisors: Paulo Barelli and Srihari Govindan)

Commendation: Meredith J. Martin, Psychology, “Delineating the Functions of Attachment and Affiliation in Early Adolescents’ Internal Working Models of their Best Friendship” (Advisor: Patrick T. Davies)

Natural Sciences

Winner: James E. Baker, Physics, “Development of a Two-Dimensional Photonic Crystal Biosensing Platform” (Advisor: Benjamin L. Miller)

Commendation: Ilker Yildirim, Brain and Cognitive Sciences, “From Perception to Conception: Learning Multisensory Representations” (Advisors: Robert A. Jacobs and Daniel Gildea)

Engineering and Applied Sciences

Winner: Kyle Fuerschbach, Optics, “Freeform, φ-Polynomial Optical Surfaces: Optical Design, Fabrication and Assembly” (Advisor: Jannick Rolland)

Commendation: Li Chen, Electrical and Computer Engineering, “Increasing Coverage and Improving Efficiency for RFID Systems and Wireless Sensor Networks” (Advisor: Wendi Heinzelman)

Commendation: Walter S. Lasecki, Computer Science, “Crowd Agents: Interactive Intelligent Systems Powered by the Crowd” (Advisors: Jeffrey P. Bigham and James F. Allen)

Commendation: Amy H. Van Hove, Biomedical Engineering, “Enzymatically-responsive Poly(ethylene glycol) Hydrogels for the Controlled Delivery of Therapeutic Peptides” (Advisor: Danielle S.W. Benoit)


2013-2014


Humanities and Humanistic Social Sciences

Winner: Rebecca Burditt, Visual and Cultural Studies, “Commercial Moments: Cinema, Capital, and the Formation of Postwar American Identity” (Advisor: A. Joan Saab)

Commendation: Esther Arnold, English, “Entertaining Reformers: Social Reform and Recreation in American Literature and Silent Film, 1840-1915” (Advisor: John Michael)

Commendation: Michael J. Brown, History, “Experts, Eggheads, and Elites: Debating the Role of Intellectuals in American Political Culture, 1952-2008” (Advisor: Robert B. Westbrook)

Social Sciences

Winner: Jordan Silberman, Clinical and Social Sciences in Psychology, “Using Source-Localized EEG Operant Conditioning to Up-Regulate Neural Mechanisms Underlying Self-Control and Improve Self-Control Ability” (Advisor: Miron Zuckerman)

Commendation: Peter Haschke, Political Science, “Democracy and the Human Right to the Physical Integrity of the Person” (Advisor: G. Bingham Powell, Jr.)

Natural Sciences

Winner: Daniel A. Everson, Chemistry, “Nickel-Catalyzed Electrophile Cross-coupling of Aryl Halides with Alkyl Halides” (Advisor: Daniel J. Weix)

Commendation: Zhihuan Li, Biology, “The Role of Lipid Droplets in Regulating Histone Metabolism” (Advisor: Michael Welte)

Commendation: Kyoung Hee Kim, Physics, “Evolution of Protoplanetary Disks in the Orion A Star-Forming Region” (Advisor: Dan M. Watson)

Engineering and Applied Sciences

Winner: Luke K. Dalessandro, Computer Science, “Preserving the Appeal of Transactional Programming” (Advisor: Michael Scott)
Commendation: Ryan Beams, Optics, “Graphene Nanophotonics” (Advisor: Lukas Novotny)

Commendation: Mahesh B. Nagarajan, Biomedical Engineering, “A Framework for Computer-Aided Diagnosis with Novel Computational Methods for Characterizing Healthy and Pathological Soft Tissue Patterns on Medical Images” (Advisor: Axel Wismuller)


2012-2013


Humanities and Humanistic Social Sciences

Winner: Lucy Mulroney, Visual and Cultural Studies, "Andy Warhol, Publisher" (Advisors: Douglas Crimp and Rachel Haidu)
Commendation: Russell Sbriglia, English, "Dissensus Communis: Conservatism, Skepticism, and Sympathy in the American Renaissance" (Advisor: John Michael)

Social Sciences

Winner: Sonnette M. Bascoe, Clinical and Social Sciences in Psychology, “Beyond Phenotypical Forms of Family Behaviors: The Developmental Utility of a Boundary Conceptualization of Triadic Relationship Processes" (Advisor: Professor Patrick T. Davies)

Natural Sciences

Winner: Jesse Chvojka, Physics, “Anti-Neutrino Charged Current Quasi-Elastic Scattering in MINERνA” (Advisor: Kevin McFarland)
Commendation: Ruja Shrestha, Chemistry, “Transition-Metal-Catalyzed Cross-Coupling of Organic Halides With Enones” (Advisor: Daniel Weix)

Engineering and Applied Sciences

Winner: Kelley A. Garvin, Biomedical Engineering, “Ultrasound Technologies for the Spatial Patterning of Cells and Extracellular Matrix Proteins and the Vascularization of Engineered Tissue” (Advisors: Professor Diane Dalecki and Professor Denise C. Hocking)
Commendation: Curtis Menton, Computer Science, “Attacking and Defending Popular Election Systems” (Advisor: Lane A. Hemaspaandra)


2011-2012


Humanities and Humanistic Social Sciences

Winner: Kathryn Van Wert, English, "Wars of Inflection: Imperial Violence and the Modern Voice" (Advisor: James Longenbach)
Commendation: Kevin McCain, Philosophy, "Inference to the Best Explanation and the External World: A Defense of the Explanationist Response to Skepticism" (Advisors: Earl Conlee and Richard Feldman)

Social Sciences

Winner: Nicole Asmussen, Political Science, "Parties and Polarization in Congress: Causes and Consequences" (Advisor: Lawrence Rothenberg)

Natural Sciences

Winner: David Walker Loehlin, Biology, "Genetics of Size and Shape Evolution in Nasonia" (Advisor: John Werren)
Commendation: Manahloh Belachew Yihun, Earth and Environmental Sciences, "Dynamics of Dike Intrusions and 3D Velocity Structure Beneath an Incipient Seafloor Spreading Center in Afar, Ethiopia" (Advisor: Cindy Ebinger)
Commendation: Mayukh Lahiri, Physics, "Contributions to the Theories of Coherence and Polarization of Light” (Advisor: Emil Wolf)

Engineering and Applied Sciences

Winner: Berkehan Ciftcioglu, Electrical and Computer Engineering, "Intra-Chip Free-Space Optical Interconnect: System, Device, Integration and Prototyping" (Advisor: Hui Wu)
Winner: Ramkumar Sabesan, Optics, "Interaction Between Optical and Neural Factors Affecting Visual Performance" (Advisor: Geunyoung Yoon)
Commendation: Hsin-I Peng, Biomedical Engineering, "Engineering a Microfluidic DNA Biosensor on Nanostructured Ag Surfaces" (Advisor: Benjamin Miller)


2010-2011


Humanities and Humanistic Social Sciences

Winner: Leah Haught, English, “Toward an Aesthetics of Failure: Generic Expectation and Identity Formation in Middle English Arthuriana” (Advisor: Thomas Hahn)

Commendation: Nicola Mann, Visual and Cultural Studies, "The Death and Resurrection of Chicago's Public Housing in the American Visual Imagination" (Advisor: A. Joan Saab)

Social Sciences

Winner: Christian Houle, Political Science, “Inequality, Economic Development and Democracy” (Advisor: Randall Stone)

Commendation: Cheryl Carmichael, Clinical and Social Sciences in Psychology, "With a Little Help From My Friends: Long-term Self-perceived Health, Neuroendocrine, and Well-being Correlates of Early Adult Social Activity" (Advisor: Harry Reis)

Commendation: Vikram Manjunath, Economics, "Strategic and Normative Analysis of Resource Allocation Problems" (Advisor: William Thomson)

Natural Sciences

Winner: Curtis Broadbent, Physics, “Applications of High-Dimensional Photonic Entanglement” (Advisor: John C. Howell)

Commendation: Jeremy Rabinowitz, Biology, "Centrosome-Mediated RNA Segregation: a Novel Patterning Mechanism in Ilyanassa" (Advisor: J. David Lambert)

Engineering and Applied Sciences

Winner: Phil Brune, Mechanical Engineering, "The Mechanics of Imperial Roman Concrete and the Structural Design of Vaulted Monuments" (Advisor: Renato Perucchio)

Winner: Manuel Guizar, Optics, “Methods for Coherent Lensless Imaging and X-Ray Wavefront Measurement” (Advisor: James R. Fienup)


2009-2010


Humanities and Humanistic Social Sciences

Winner: Jeremy K. Saucier, History, “Mobilizing the Imagination: Army Advertising and the Politics of Culture in Post-Vietnam America” (Advisor: Robert B. Westbrook)

Social Sciences

Winner: Martin C. Steinwand, Political Science, “The Political Economy of Foreign Aid” (Advisor: Randall Stone)

Natural Sciences

Winner: Lisa Carlson, Chemistry, “Photophysics of Individual Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes” (Advisor: Todd D. Krauss)

Commendation: Zhiyong Mao, Biology, “Roles of Cancer, Aging, Cell Cycle and Telomere Associated Proteins in Mammalian DNA Double Strand Break Repair” (Advisor: Todd D. Krauss)

Engineering and Applied Sciences

Winner: Anand Jha, Optics, “Coherence Properties of the Entangled Two-Photon Field Produced by Parametric Down-Conversion” (Advisor: Robert W. Boyd)

Winner: Michael F. Spear, Computer Science, “Fast Software Transactions” (Advisor: Michael L. Scott)


2008-2009


Humanities and Humanistic Social Sciences

Winner: Emily Huber, English, "For Y am sorwe, and sorwe ys Y": Melancholy, Despair, and Pathology in Middle English Literature" (Advisor: Thomas Hahn)

Social Sciences

Winner: Matthew Platt, Political Science, "The Normalization of Black Politics" (Advisor: Richard Niemi)

Natural Sciences

Winner: Benjamin A. Sargent, Physics, "Spitzer IRS Spectroscopic Studies of Dust Composition of Protoplanetary Disks" (Advisor: William J. Forrest)

Winner: Nitin Phadnis, Biology, "The Molecular Basis of Dominance and The Role of Genetic Conflict in Speciation in Drosophila" (Advisors: H. Allen Orr and James D. Fry)

Engineering and Applied Sciences

Winner: Dongxia Liu, Chemical Engineering, "Engineering Particle Morphology and Assembly for Proton Conducting Fuel Cell Membrane Applications" (Advisor: Matthew Z. Yates)