IGERT—Students

Pioneer Class

IGERT StudentBio
Rebecca Berman
Rebecca Berman
Rebecca received her BS degree from the Institute of Optics, University of Rochester, in 2009. She is currently a graduate student at the Institute of Optics and is a member of Professor Duncan Moore’s research group. Rebecca has explored research areas in optics including the imaging of liquid crystals at the Laboratory for Laser Energetics in Rochester, the tapering of holey optical fibers at the Centre for Ultrahigh Bandwidth Devices at University of Sydney in Australia, and the optics of intrachip optical interconnects at the University of Rochester. She is currently involved in concentrating solar voltaic research, along with other group members in Professor Moore’s lab. In her free time, Rebecca enjoys playing violin with smaller chamber ensembles, including URs Chamber Orchestra and a student string quartet. She is extremely enthusiastic about swing dancing, and enjoys teaching lessons with Groove Juice Swing, a local swing dancing organization that is committed to spreading the joy of swing dancing and Lindy Hop in the Rochester area.
Shawn Divitt
Shawn Divitt
Shawn received a BS in Physics and Mathematics from Western Washington University in 2009. His undergraduate research under Dr. Janelle Leger included fabrication and testing of metal-insulator composite thin films for use in luminescent solar concentrators. Shawn's current research focus under his advisor Professor Lukas Novotny concerns the direct conversion of light into electricity using optical rectennas.
Chris Favaro
Chris Favaro
Chris did his undergraduate work in Chemistry at Ithaca College where his research interests included synthesis of molecules used for inhibiting enzymes crucial to quorum sensing behavior in bacteria. He spent his Junior year at Tsukuba University in Tsukuba Science City Japan where he studied the Japanese language and developed a number of connections in the Japanese science community. Currently Chris is working on his PhD at the University of Rochester jointly advised by Dr. Lewis Rothberg and Dr. Ching Tang. His research involves development and analysis of high efficiency organic photovoltaic devices. In the future Chris would like to work in industry in Japan.
Lenore Kubie
Lenore Kubie
Lenore received her BA in Chemistry at Western Connecticut State University in 2009. While at WestConn, Lenore studied charge transfer from various porphyrins to single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs). From 2007 to 2009 Lenore worked as analytical chemist at ATMI in Danbury, CT. Throughout her chemistry career, she have been involved with various activist groups to help information on global environmental concerns. Lenore is currently in the Chemistry Department at the University of Rochester working towards her PhD. Her current research involves charge transfer from zinc-substituted, heme-containing polypeptides into carbon nanotubes for a hydrogen-generating modular solar device.
Dan Williams
Dan Williams
Dan received his BS in Physics and Mathematics from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 2008.  During his undergraduate education, he took internships at NIST and LI-COR Biosciences (Lincoln, NE) along with his undergraduate research in the UNL department of physics. All of these positions involved a heavy use of optics in theory and in practice. In 2008, he joined the optics PhD program at the Institute of Optics at the University of Rochester to pursue his growing fascination with the field of optics. Given Dan's long time interest in alternative energy, he joined the research group of Dr. Duncan Moore, and is currently performing research in the area of concentrating photovoltaics for solar power generation.
Josh Winans
Josh Winans
Josh received his BS in Physics at the University of Pittsburgh in 2001. He then joined the Americorps service program where he led daily groups of volunteers in the construction of affordable housing with Habitat for Humanity in the San Francisco Bay Area until 2003. In 2004 he went to Burkina Faso in West Africa with the Peace Corps to teach math and science. Afterwards he started working for ANH Refractories as a research technician until in 2007 when he joined the Materials Science PhD program at the University of Rochester. Josh's research focus under his advisor Professor Philippe Fauchet includes all things porous silicon and using nanoparticles to increase the efficiency of thin-film silicon solar cells.