Two Engineering Grad Students Earn Top Defense Fellowships

May 16, 2016

By UCLA Samueli Newsroom

Two graduate students at the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science have received a National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowship, one of the country’s top honors for students in the early part of their graduate study. The fellowships are awarded to students in 15 areas of Department of Defense interest.

The two students – Erin Askounis, studying materials science and engineering, and Salvador Badillo-Rios, studying aerospace engineering – are among four UCLA students and 180 nationwide to receive the fellowship. The fellowship pays for each student’s full tuition and academic fees for three years. Students also receive a stipend. The awards were announced by the American Society for Engineering and Education, which administers the fellowship program.

DSC_0401-NDSEG-Askounis-320-200px Erin Askounis
NDSEG Area: Materials science and engineering.
Sponsoring agency: Air Force Research Laboratory
Research interests: Synthesis of a polymer that will change its stiffness when exposed to ultraviolet light.
Faculty advisor: Qibing Pei
Lab: Soft Materials Research Laboratory
Askounis received her bachelor’s degree in Chemistry from Northeastern University.


DSC_0374-NDSEG-Badillo-Rios--320-200pxSalvador Badillo-Rios
NDSEG Area: Aeronautical and astronautical engineering.
Research interests: Turbulent combustion model development for aero-propulsion applications.
Sponsoring agency: Army Research Office
Faculty advisor: Ann R. Karagozian
Lab: Energy & Propulsion Research Laboratory
Badillo Rios was a double major in mechanical engineering and aerospace engineering at the UC Irvine Henry Samueli School of Engineering.


The other UCLA NDSEG Fellowship awardees are: Macrina Cooper-White, for cognitive, neural, and behavioral sciences; and Rafal Dziedzic for chemistry. Both were sponsored by the Air Force Research Laboratory.

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