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CRB Students Awarded Fellowships

Two students have been awarded The National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowships under the Department of Defense (DOD). These highly competitive fellowships were originally established in 1989 to encourage the number of U.S. citizens and nationals to pursue doctoral degrees in science and engineering.

James Avtges

Avtges’ NDSEG Fellowship is sponsored by the Army Research Office (ARO). The fellowship includes stipend and tuition for three years, a travel stipend, and a mentor from the ARO. His research focuses on reinforcement learning in robotics with a focus in soft-actuated robots and learning behaviors in real-time.

“I’m extremely thankful to the department and the Center for Robotics and Biosystems for the advisorship in my research and proposal writing. I’m excited for the research the NDSEG fellowship will support, and to be awarded it alongside fellow Mechanical Engineering students.” - James Avtges

Rohan Kota

Kota’s NDSEG Fellowship is sponsored by the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory or Space Force, under the direction of the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research & Engineering. The fellowship includes $43,200 per year for three years, a travel stipend, and a mentor from the Air Force Research Lab (AFRL). 

“Receiving the NDSEG Fellowship is an incredible honor and a testament to the support system at Northwestern. The guidance I received from various CRB professors and past NDSEG fellows was invaluable during the application process, and I’m proud to share this achievement alongside James Avtges and Malichi Landis.”  - Rohan Kota

Fiona Neylon, Awarded a NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) 

The goal of the GRFP program is to broaden participation of the full spectrum of diverse talents in STEM. The five-year fellowship provides three years of financial support inclusive of an annual stipend of $37,000.

Receiving the Fellowship is an incredible honor and is not only validation of the dedication I’ve put into my academic and research pursuits, but also a testament to the support of my mentors. I am inspired to see that my research interests and vision for the field aligned with the mission of the NSF".  - Fiona Neylon.

Drew Curtis awarded John N. Nicholson Fellowship, Northwestern University

John N. Nicholson was a physician who practiced in the Chicago area for more than 50 years and whose legacy is to assist outstanding grad and PhD students in the sciences, management, and engineering. Curtis was awarded this unique fellowship that includes full tuition payment and a stipend for 9 months with the option to reapply. 

“I'm thrilled to have been awarded the Dr. John N. Nicholson Fellowship. As a Chicagoan of Greek descent, it is my honor to continue the legacy of a Greek-American community leader and Chicago local. The fellowship will allow me to continue my research in robotic swarms and multi-robot systems”.   - Drew Curtis 


Join the Center for Robotics and Biosystems in congratulating these students. 

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