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Frontiers of Science

Science Fellows

The Columbia Science Fellows Program

With the creation of Frontiers of Science, a new postdoctoral position was established for young scientists interested in developing their skills in both research and science education. These "Science Fellows" are instrumental in developing new course material. However, Science Fellow positions are not purely teaching appointments. Because one goal of Frontiers of Science is to expose students to the way scientists work and think, Science Fellows actively pursue their own research projects within their department. Yes, being a Science Fellow can certainly make for a busy life, but if you love to teach and don't want to give up research, this may be the perfect position for you!

Currently, there are twelve Science Fellows representing five science Departments at Columbia (Astronomy, Chemistry, DEES**, Biology, E3B*, and Physics). It is expected that roughly three-five of these positions will open each year. If you are interested in becoming a Science Fellow, please follow the job announcement link below for more information and instructions on how to apply.

Current Science Fellows

Imre Bartos Physics Studies black hole formation through the gravitational collapse of massive stars and the resulting spectacular explosions, as well as the coalescence of black hole and neutron star binaries. He also works on the biological applications of optics, ranging from malaria control in sub-Saharan Africa to genetics.
Katherine Brooks E3B* Investigating the evolution of social behavior in snapping shrimp.
Amber Carr Chemistry Research focuses on simulation studies of self-assembling nanoscale systems.
Taffeta Elliott Biology Interested in how the brain discerns the complex sound properties of language. Research involves making complete acoustic description of the 5 percepts that give sound color (timbre) to the western orchestra, using computational methods that numerically represent perceptual patterns in sound.
Rachel Kennedy-Smith Psychology Investigating the normal and pathological function of mast cells in the brain
Alex Lloyd DEES* Worked on the measurement of water in magmas and minerals and their application as chronometers for magma ascent during the explosive eruption of Volcán de Fuego in 1974. He currently continues his research on the timescales of igneous processes during explosive eruptions.
Paolomi Merchant Chemistry Developing fluorescent molecules to visualize various aspects of neurotransmission. She is interested in the development of small molecules and imaging techniques for use in the treatment and monitoring of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.
Shaena Montanari E3B* Currently researches molecular and dietary ecology of large carnivores
Eric Raymer Physics Reasearch focuses on modeling the behavior of a newly discovered sub-class of binaries called Supergiant Fast X-ray Transients, in which X-ray flares are produced by a neutron star as it accretes material from its companion's stellar wind.
Mónica Rouco-Molina DEES* Research is focused on microbial oceanography
Abigail Sporer Biology Current research focuses on the regulation of pigment, antibiotic, and signaling molecule production in the pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa and several other species of non-pathogenic soil bacteria
Helena Uthas Astronomy Research is focused on late evolution of close binary star systems.

*E3B - Ecology, Evolution and Environmental Biology
**DEES - Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences

Past Science Fellow Experience - An Article by Robin McGary Herrnstein