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Jefferson Lab welcomes the next generation of nuclear physicists

Newswise — NEWPORT NEWS, VA – The U.S. Department of Energy’s Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility is proud to announce nine new graduate scholarships for the 2023-2024 academic year, thanks to continued funding from Jefferson Science Associates. These scholarships provide students with a unique opportunity to collaborate with distinguished nuclear physicists at Jefferson Lab and pursue advanced studies at their respective universities.

Dr. Or Hen, associate professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and JSA advisor for eight years, praised Jefferson Lab as an excellent place to conduct highly advanced scientific research and train the next generation of nuclear physicists. He said the fellowships provide students with the resources and support they need to focus on their research and advance the field.

Scholarships are open to students enrolled in a doctoral program in physics, engineering, or other Jefferson Lab-related doctoral programs at a Southeastern Universities Research Association member university. Fellows will be paired with experienced advisors from their universities to work on cutting-edge projects at Jefferson Lab that explore the fundamental forces and particles that make up our universe.

“The JSA Fellowship program has a long history of supporting students on their journey to becoming scientists, and I am proud to have been involved with it for many years,” said Sebastian Kuhn, chair of the Department of Physics at Old Dominion University and former Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Jefferson Lab User Group. “This year, I am particularly pleased to see that three of our own students have been selected for the program.”

The recipients of the 2023-2024 graduate scholarships and their advisors are:

  • John Boyd, University of Virginia, Nilanga Liyanage, advisor
  • Justin Cammarota, William and Mary, Jianwei Qiu, advisor
  • Marco Carrillo, Old Dominion University, Raúl Briceño, advisor
  • Sean Jeffas, University of Virginia, Nilanga Liyanage, advisor
  • Pushpa Pandey, Old Dominion University, Sebastian Kuhn, advisor
  • Jason Phelan, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, or Hen, advisor
  • Tommaso Rainaldi, Old Dominion University, Ted Rogers, advisor
  • Sara Ratliff, George Washington University, Axel Schmidt, advisor
  • Abhyuday Sharda, University of Tennessee, Nadia Fomin, advisor

“The JSA scholarship was a turning point in my academic journey,” said final year scholar Pushpa Pandey. “This not only provided me with financial support, but also opened the door to collaboration with leading experts in my field, thereby significantly advancing my research.” »

JSA Fellowships are funded by the JSA Initiatives Fund, a program offered by JSA to support projects, initiatives, and activities that foster scientific outreach and promote the scientific, educational, and technological missions of Jefferson Lab in ways that complement its core activities and applied. research focus. The Initiatives Fund also supports projects, initiatives and activities that benefit the laboratory user community.


Jefferson Science Associates, LLC, manages and operates the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, or Jefferson Lab, for the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy. JSA is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Southeastern Universities Research Association, Inc. (SURA).

DOEThe Office of Science is the largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and strives to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit

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