Alumni Updates '10-'11

  • Tulika Bose (Ph.D. ‘06 Applied Physics) is an Assistant Professor in the Physics Department at Boston University.
  • SEAS Alumni from all class years visited the Columbia campus for the Alumni Reunion and Dean’s Days Weekend from June 3-4, 2011. As part of the festivities, the Dean sponsored departmental luncheons. APAM alumni in attendance included: Yuri Baransky (Ph.D. 1987 Applied Mathematics), Nora Dolatabadi (B.S. 2006 Applied Mathematics), Danielle Scott (B.S. 2001 Applied Mathematics), and Jiatao Wang (B.S. 2006 Applied Mathematics).
  • Nicholas C. M. Fuller (Ph.D. ‘02, Solid State Physics) recently received the Black Engineer of the Year Award (BEYA) for Outstanding Contribution in Industry from the Career Communications Group at the Annual Awards Convention held in Baltimore, MD, in February 2010. Dr. Fuller, who is a research staff member and manager at IBM’s Thomas J. Watson Research Center, received this award for his technical contributions in the field of plasma science technology entailing: (i) enablement of 90 nm and beyond CMOS (complementary metal-oxide semiconductor) chip technologies; (ii) determination of plasma interactions with low dielectric constant, patterning, and other technologically relevant materials; (iii) 24 patents; and (iv) more than 50 publications. (Spring 2011 Columbia Engineering Magazine)
  • David Gates (Ph.D. ‘94 Plasma Physics) was featured in the article “From tokamaks to stellarators” in R&D Magazine. Gates, the Stellarator Physics Leader at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL), was offered a visiting professorship last summer at the National Institute for Fusion Science (NIFS) in Japan, where he spent three months working on the Large Helical Device (LHD).
  • Jeremy Goren (B.S. ‘07 Applied Physics) “I have lived in Shanghai, China since September 2007. In January 2009 I finished the courses at Shanghai Jiaotong University and reached fluency in Mandarin Chinese. Since then I have tutored students in Math, Physics, and Mandarin Chinese. I was the Head Consultant of Undergraduate Studies at The Princeton Review Shanghai from August 2009-July 2010. I recently founded a company called Elite College Link (ECL), aimed at assisting Chinese high school students in applying to universities in the United States. Recently, I formed a partnership with ONLY Education group, with 57 locations in Shanghai, over 10,000 students, 800+ employees, and 16 years of experience to assist Chinese students with their college applications. We expect to make a minimum of 200,000 USD profit in the 2011 calendar year, with minimum 100% growth year on year for 3 years. I am currently applying to business schools, and my top choices are MIT, Stanford, Wharton, Harvard, Chicago and Columbia. Ideally I would like to defer admission until September 2012 so I can help my new partnership achieve a moderate success. Upon completing my MBA, I intend on returning to China to help grow the ONLY-ECL partnership into a multi-million dollar a year venture. After a couple years, I intend to hire a manager to run my end of the partnership while I maintain a small role share some of the profits, while focused on other ventures. I currently have a couple internet startups in mind that I would like to start within the next couple of years.”
  • David Graff (M.S. ‘06 Medical Physics) completed a postdoctoral fellowship in medical imaging physics at Johns Hopkins, performing research in small animal SPECT camera design, artifacts associated with truncated tomography, and the clinical effectiveness of cone-beam CT in interventional radiological procedures. He now works as a research scientist at Quantason LLC in Philadelphia, developing novel types of ultrasound to screen for breast cancer. He lives in Reading, PA, with his wife, Vicky, and their three kids. Their third child, Abraham Spinoza Graff, was born on January 6. (Spring 2011 Columbia Engineering Magazine)
  • Brian Grierson (Ph.D. ‘09 Plasma Physics) took a position as an associate research physicist at Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory. His research is performed in San Diego, CA, at General Atomics on the DIII-Tokamak. (Spring 2011 Columbia Engineering Magazine)
  • Ralph Izzo (Ph.D. ‘81, Plasma Physics) was the keynote speaker for Columbia Engineering’s Class Day Ceremony on Monday, May 16, 2011. Izzo is currently Chairman, President, and CEO of Public Service Enterprise Group (PSEG) in New Jersey.

  • Bahram Jalali-Farahani (Ph.D. '89 Applied Physics) was elected a Fellow of the American Physical Society (APS) and has also been appointed the Northrop Grumman Endowed Chair in Optoelectronics at UCLA.
  • Matthew Lanctot (Ph.D. '10 Plasma Physics) was invited to lecture on his research results conducted on the DIII-D tokamak at the 52nd Annual Meeting of the APS Division of Plasma Physics.
  • Chrysanthe Spyropoulos Munn (Ph.D. ‘99 Applied Mathematics) is married to Tobin Munn and has two children, Gabriella and Axel. As a geophysicist, she works for British Petroleum in Houston as executive assistant to Ian Cavanagh, the senior vice president in technology. (Spring 2011 Columbia Engineering Magazine)
  • Steve Sabbagh (Ph.D. '90 Plasma Physics) was named Fellow of the American Physical Society. Professor Sabbagh's award was presented at the 52nd Annual Meeting of the APS Division of Plasma Physics for leadership in advancing the understanding of magnetohydrodynamics equilibrium, stability, rotation damping, and active feedback control of high-beta tokamak and low-aspect ratio tokamak plasmas.
  • Andrew J. Salthouse (B.S. '69 Applied Physics) “I’ve been married 29 years; one daughter is married, the other is getting married very soon. I am an analyst at Sprint Nextel company.
  • APAM alumni presented their latest results at the 23rd International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Fusion Energy Conference in Daejeon, Korea from October 11-16, 2010. Steve Sabbagh (Ph.D. ‘90 Plasma Physics), presented a talk entitled “Resistive Wall Mode Stabilization and Plasma Rotation Damping Considerations for Maintaining High Beta Plasma Discharges in NSTX”. Chris Hegna (PhD. ‘89 Plasma Physics), now at the University of Wisconsin, reported on “High-beta physics of magnetic islands in 3-D equilibria”, and M.S. Chu (Ph.D. ‘71, Plasma Physics), now at General Atomics, presented a report entitled, “Response of a Resistive and Rotating Tokamak to External Magnetic Perturbations Below the Alfvénic Frequency”.

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