Tag Archives: Distinguished Dissertation Award

Nominations open for the 2019 CGS/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award

Nominations are now open for the 2019 Council of Graduate Schools (CGS)/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award. Please submit nominations to the Graduate School no later than 4pm, June 6, 2019, following our online instructions. This year, nominations are being accepted from dissertations in the fields of:

  1. Biological and Life Sciences
  2. Humanities and Fine Arts

Michigan Tech may nominate one student in each field. PhD students who have completed all of their degree requirements between July 1, 2017, and June 30, 2019, are eligible. The fields of competition for 2020 will be Mathematics, Physical Sciences, and Engineering; and Social Sciences.

Nominations must be delivered to Debra Charlesworth in the Graduate School no later than 4 p.m. on June 6, 2019; e-mail nominations to gradschool@mtu.edu are preferred.  Contact Debra Charlesworth (gradschool@mtu.edu) if you have any questions about the competition.


Nominee for 2018 CGS/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award: Lauren Schaefer

Lauren Schaefer
Geological Engineering

Lauren Schaefer 2018Lauren N. Schaefer received both an MSc in Geology (International Geological Masters in Volcanology and Geotechniques, 2012) and a PhD in Geological Engineering as a NASA Earth and Space Science Fellow (2016) at Michigan Tech under the supervision of Dr. Thomas Oommen. Her dissertation investigated the potential for large-scale debris avalanches at Pacaya Volcano in Guatemala to optimize future monitoring and mitigation efforts. A combination of experimental rock mechanics, field investigations, remote sensing, and numerical modeling not only detected, but revealed the nature and mechanics of the largest landslide surge witnessed in a single event at a volcano. Her dissertation provided rare insight into precursory deformation prior to a potential future catastrophic collapse at an active volcano. Such an event was witnessed at Mount St. Helens in 1980, and is known to have occurred at over 400 volcanoes worldwide.

Currently, Lauren is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, New Zealand, where she continues to research landslide and volcanic hazards.


Nominee for 2018 CGS/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award: Erin Pischke

Erin Pischke
Environmental and Energy Policy

Erin Pischke 2018My dissertation research examines the public perceptions of socioecological impacts of oil palm production and the political ecology of environmental change in Tabasco, Mexico. I collaborate with natural, social and engineering scientists to study the impacts of bioenergy development projects to assess the sustainability of them. My work shows that past political and economic actions impact current environmental conditions and creates institutional and structural constraints in the region to which people are adapting. A multi-pronged, interdisciplinary approach tackles problems from various angles to, in a sense, make the problem smaller. My research also studies the challenges that international, interdisciplinary teams face when studying such impacts in international settings so that future research can be more successful.


Nominees for 2018 CGS/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award

The Graduate School would like to congratulate and recognize Lauren Schaefer and Erin Pischke for being nominated for the Council of Graduate Schools / ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Awards, the nation’s most prestigious honors for doctoral dissertations.

Two awards are given annually in two different broad areas (mathematics, physical sciences and engineering; and social sciences; and the biological sciences; and humanities and fine arts). The winners of the awards will be announced during the Fall 2018 Semester.

The 2018 fields of competition are:

Mathematics, Physical Sciences, and Engineering

Mathematics and Social Sciences


Nominations open for the 2018 CGS/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award

Nominations are now open for the 2018 Council of Graduate Schools (CGS)/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award. Please submit nominations to the Graduate School no later than 4pm, June 8, 2018, following our online instructions. This year, nominations are being accepted from dissertations in the fields of:

  1. Mathematics, Physical Sciences, and Engineering
  2. Social Sciences (note: history is classed within the humanities and is not a field of competition in 2018)

Michigan Tech may nominate one student in each field. PhD students who have completed all of their degree requirements between July 1, 2016, and June 30, 2018, are eligible. The fields of competition for 2019 will be humanities/fine arts and biological and life sciences.

Nominations must be delivered to Debra Charlesworth in the Graduate School no later than 4 p.m. on June 8, 2018; e-mail nominations to gradschool@mtu.edu are preferred.  Contact Debra Charlesworth (gradschool@mtu.edu) if you have any questions about the competition.


Nominations open for the 2017 CGS/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award

Nominations are now open for the 2017 Council of Graduate Schools (CGS)/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award. Please submit nominations to the Graduate School no later than 4pm, June 27, 2017, following our online instructions. This year, nominations are being accepted from dissertations in the fields of:

  1. Biological Sciences (including Forestry)
  2. Humanities and Fine Arts

Michigan Tech may nominate one student in each field. PhD students who have completed all of their degree requirements between July 1, 2015, and June 30, 2017, are eligible. The fields of competition for 2018 will be mathematics, physical sciences, engineering, and social sciences.

Nominations must be delivered to Debra Charlesworth in the Graduate School no later than 4 p.m. on June 27, 2017; e-mail nominations to gradschool@mtu.edu are preferred.  Contact Debra Charlesworth (gradschool@mtu.edu) if you have any questions about the competition.



Nominations open for the 2016 CGS/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award

Nominations are now open for the 2016 Council of Graduate Schools (CGS)/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award. Please submit nominations to the Graduate School no later than 4pm, June 20, 2016, following our online instructions. This year, nominations are being accepted from dissertations in the fields of:

  1. Mathematics, Physical Sciences, and Engineering
  2. Social Sciences (note: history is classed within the humanities and is not a field of competition in 2016)

Michigan Tech may nominate one student in each field. PhD students who have completed all of their degree requirements between July 1, 2014, and June 30, 2016, are eligible. The fields of competition for 2017 will be humanities/fine arts and biological and life sciences.

Nominations must be delivered to Debra Charlesworth in the Graduate School no later than 4 p.m. on June 20, 2016; e-mail nominations to gradschool@mtu.edu are preferred.  Contact Debra Charlesworth (gradschool@mtu.edu) if you have any questions about the competition.


Graduate School Announces Award Recipients

The Graduate School is pleased to announce the following graduate student award recipients:

CGS/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award Nominee:

  • Gary Kaunonen, PhD Graduate in Rhetoric, Theory and Culture

DeVlieg Foundation Fellowships:

  • Joseph Niehaus, PhD Candidate in Atmospheric Sciences
  • Shawn O’Neil, PhD Candidate in Forest Science

Doctoral Finishing Fellowships:

  • Mehran Bidarvatan, PhD Candidate in Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
  • Kamal Dhungana, PhD Candidate in Physics
  • Rebecca Frost, PhD Candidate in Rhetoric, Theory and Culture
  • Ruilong Han, PhD Candidate in Civil Engineering
  • Jun Tao, PhD Candidate in Computer Science
  • Xu Yang, PhD Candidate in Civil Engineering

King-Chávez-Parks Future Faculty Fellowships:

  • Alexander Miranda, PhD Candidate in Mechanical Engineering – Engineering Mechanics
  • Renee Oats, PhD Candidate in Civil Engineering
  • Sterling Prince, PhD Candidate in Mechanical Engineering – Engineering Mechanics

Photographs and details of awards and fellowships coordinated by the Graduate School can be found online.


Graduate School Announces Award Recipients for Fall 2014 and Spring 2015

The Graduate School is pleased to announce the following students have earned:

Doctoral Finishing Fellowships:
Spring 2015
Adam Coble, PhD Candidate in Forest Science
Khanh Cung, PhD Candidate in Mechanical Engineering – Engineering Mechanics
Jie Zhou, PhD Candidate in Materials Science and Engineering
Fall 2014
Yaoxian Huang, PhD Candidate in Environmental Engineering
Gary Kaunonen, PhD Candidate in Rhetoric and Technical Communication
Sandra Owusu, PhD Candidate in Forest Molecular Genetics and Biotechnology
Venkata Ramana Pidatala, PhD Candidate in Biological Sciences
Jingtuo Zhang, PhD Candidate in Chemistry
Finishing fellowships provide support to PhD candidates who are close to completing their degrees. These fellowships are available through the generosity of alumni and friends of the University. They are intended to recognize outstanding PhD candidates who are in need of financial support to finish their degrees and are also contributing to the attainment of goals outlined in The Michigan Tech Plan.

Council of Graduate Schools/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Award
Azad Henareh Khalyani, PhD Candidate in Forest Science

Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools (MAGS) Distinguished Thesis Award
Xu Yang, PhD Candidate in Civil Engineering

Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools (MAGS) Excellence in Teaching Award
Elaheh Gorgin, PhD Candidate in Mathematical Sciences
Amanda Shaw, MS Candidate in Physics

??Dean’s Fellowships

??DeVlieg Foundation Fellowships

??King-Chaves-Parks Future Faculty Fellowships

Recipients for fall 2011 were:

Irfan Ahmed, PhD candidate in Electrical Engineering
Surendar R. Dhadi, PhD candidate in Biological Sciences
Neluka K. Dissanayake, PhD candidate in Engineering Physics
Shu Wei Goh, PhD candidate in Civil Engineering
Amber M. Roth, PhD candidate in Forest Science

Recipients for spring 2012 are:

Zeyad T. Ahmed, PhD candidate in Environmental Engineering
Kefeng Li, PhD candidate in Biological Sciences
Charles L. Lawton Endowed Fellowship
Saikat Mukhopadhyay, PhD candidate in Physics
Zhiwei Peng, PhD candidate in Materials Science and Engineering
Doctoral Finishing Fellowship
Lindsey M. Shartell, PhD candidate in Forest Science
Neil V. Hakala Endowed Fellowship

Nominations are currently open for summer 2012 finishing fellowships. Materials are due no later than 4pm, March 14th. See complete details online about the application and review procedure.