Ian Hunt-Isaak ’18 Awarded National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship

June 2, 2019

Hillary Hempstead

night view of the Science Center.
Photo credit: William Rieter

Ian Hunt-Isaak ’18, a physics graduate, has been awarded a National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowship.

NDSEG Fellowships are awarded to applicants who will pursue a doctoral degree in one of fifteen supported disciplines. Fellowships last for three years and pay for full graduate school tuition and mandatory fees, a monthly stipend, and up to $1,000 a year in medical insurance.

Hunt-Isaak is currently attending graduate school at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and is pursuing a PhD in applied physics.

He is most looking forward to the latitude that the fellowship will provide him.

“This funding will provide me with greater freedom to pursue the types of new, potentially high reward projects I hope to engage in,” says Hunt-Isaak. “It will also help further my research work by reducing my teaching commitment and enabling me to spend more time with my colleagues to gain relevant skills."

At Oberlin, Hunt-Isaak led OC3D, a 3D printing club and makerspace entity. He also taught an ExCo on 3D printing.

Post-fellowship, Hunt-Isaak hopes to pursue a career at the intersection of biology, physics, applied math, and machine learning. He plans to use techniques from his quantitative background to “develop radical and interesting new techniques for understanding complex biological systems.” To follow this path, he believes he’ll do postdoctoral work and eventually build a career in academia.


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