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Biology Senior Prizes

Biology Senior Prizes


Each spring faculty in the Division of Biology and Medicine nominate graduating seniors in Biology for the following prizes. The Biology Awards Committee selects the recipients who are honored at a luncheon and recognized at Commencement.

Dean Marjorie Thompson Senior Prize in Biology

With generous support from the community, the Division of Biology and Medicine established The Dean Thompson Prize in Biology, which was awarded for the first time in 2015. The Dean Thompson Prize recognizes a graduating senior who has proven to be an outstanding student and student-educator in biology. The recipient must also be highly accomplished in a second academic discipline and/or extracurricular endeavor.

Recent recipients: Jahnavi Rudrakshala '17, Beatrice L. Steinert '16 and Elena R. Suglia '15

Maria L. Caleel Memorial Award for Academic Excellence

This is the highest award given to a senior biology student in each graduating class. This prize recognizes the student with the strongest qualities of scholarship, research, academic performance, and contributions to the undergraduate intellectual atmosphere.

Maria Caleel was a dedicated and involved student who graduated from Brown University in 1987. Approximately one year later, she met a tragic and untimely death while studying for a career in equine medicine at the University of Illinois' College of Veterinary Medicine. At that time, Maria Caleel was ranked at the top of her first-year class.  Her family, classmates, many friends and admirers worked together to establish an award to honor her memory - The Maria Caleel Memorial Award.

The deans and faculty of Brown's Biology departments select recipients who have demonstrated dedication to the field, outstanding academic achievement, future promise, and exemplary achievement in keeping with the standards of Maria Caleel who was not able to realize her full potential. Therefore, it is the hope of all those who helped establish this award in her memory that the recognition it brings will encourage the recipient to continue excellence in the field and embody in all aspects of life the virtues of hard work, dedication and strength of character which Maria Caleel exemplified.

Recent recipients: Cambria Chou- Freed '17, Lucy Xu '16, Samuel H. Church '15, Vanessa M. Welten '14, and Riyad Seervai '13

Richard J. Goss Prize in Experimental Biology

This prize is given to a senior biology student in recognition of remarkable academic achievement, research contributions in Experimental Biology and for being a model recipient of this award in honor of the late Professor Goss, a distinguished Professor of Biology from 1952 until his retirement in 1990.  He was a world-renowned authority on regeneration and compensatory growth, and a natural historian in the fullest sense.

Recent recipients: Zemplen Pataki '17,  Charlene V. Chabata '16, Eric L. Tung '15, Rosalyn M. Price-Waldman '14, and Lily Chan '13

George W. Hagy Prize in Human Biology

This prize is given to a senior Health & Human Biology student in recognition of embodying the spirit of the Human Biology program along with a record of remarkable academic achievement. Dr. Hagy is an emeritus Professor of Genetics, who also initiated the Human Biology concentration many years ago. 

Recent recipients: Tori Kinamon '17, Emily M. Wright '16, Divya S. Bhatia '15, Jessica D. Fields '14, Hasina S. Maredia '14, Connor Barnhart '13, and Caroline Katzman '13

James F. Kidwell Prize in Genetics and Population Biology

This prize is given to a senior biology student in recognition for a remarkable record and research achievements in Genetics and Population Biology. The late Professor Kidwell was a distinguished Professor of Population Biology and Genetics. 

Recent recipients:  Thomas Pettengill '17, Nicolas H. Ledru '16, Aaron A. Behr '15, Sinéad M. Crotty '14.5, James P. Roose '14, and Yawei Ge '13

Elizabeth Leduc Prize in Cell Biology

This prize is given to a senior biology student in recognition for a remarkable record and research achievements in Cell Biology.  The late Professor Leduc was a distinguished scholar in the field of cell biology.  She taught cell and tissue biology here for many years and also served as a Dean of Biology. 

Recent recipients: Jea Yun Sim '17, Emma T. Corcoran '16, Sonia A. Boor '15, Rachel H. Occhiogrosso '14, and Yukun Gao '13

Morris L. Povar Prize in Physiology or Zoology

This prize is given to a senior biology student in recognition for outstanding academic achievements in Physiology or Zoology. The late Dr. Povar was a distinguished Professor of Medical Science (Physiology Section) and Psychology, and the former Director of the Animal Care Facility.  He conducted research on eye movements in relation to learning, at the Primate Behavior Laboratory, in addition to overseeing all aspects of animal care at the facility on campus.

Recent recipients: JD Laurence-Chasen '17, David A. Perry '16, Mary E. Tarantino '15, Amber S. Harris '14, and Natividad Chen '13

Senior Biology Prizes

Senior prizes in biology are awarded in recognition of academic excellence, research achievement, and intellectual contributions in Biological Sciences.

Recent recipients: Naveen Balakrishnan '17, Tyler Devlin '17, Benjamin Doughty '17, Kenneth Kim '17, Nari Lee '17, Sakura Nakada '17, Chibuikem Nwizu '17, Jack M. Haglin '16, Joshua M. Hackney '16, Abigail M. Janke '16, Elissa S. Johnson '16, Leo Kadota '16, Matthew M. O'Hara