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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Nine Indian-American Students Named 2011 Davidson Fellows

Arjun AggrawalWashington, D.C. – Nine Indian-American students are among the 18 bright young people named as 2011 Davidson Fellows who exemplify the extraordinary work that can be accomplished by U.S. students who are given opportunities to excel.

The Davidson Fellows Scholarship program has provided nearly $4.5 million in scholarship funds to 184 Fellows since its inception. Earlier this year, the program was named one of the most prestigious undergraduate scholarships by U.S. News & World Report.

2011 Davidson Fellows

$25,000 Scholarships

Arjun Aggarwal

Age:16, Columbia, South Carolina, Category: Technology

Arjun Aggarwal created GNut-III, an Anthropometric Interactive Robot with Vision, Intelligence and Speech. He found the lack of an economically efficient and functional human robot has prohibited researchers from continuing to expand the field of robotics. To counter this, the GNut-III is economically efficient and functional for testing robotic algorithms. In addition to the GNut-III, Arjun has outlined a scattered open source community to work on a standardized platform that could transform robotics in the same way it has transformed computing.

Siddhartha Jena

Siddhartha Jena
Siddhartha Jena

Age: 17, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, Category: Science

Siddhartha Jena demonstrated that the immediate effect of elevated cholesterol is dysfunction of active water, oxygen, and carbon dioxide transport by the red blood cells. Using a spectrofluorometer and Zeta Sizer, he showed that exposure of red blood cells to two compounds: ONO-RS-082 and glyburide, results in an amelioration of cholesterol’s detrimental effects. Results from his work broaden the understanding of one of the most significant health risks facing our society, and the possible mechanism for its future treatment and management.

Caleb Kumar

Caleb Kumar
Caleb Kumar

Age:  15, Blaine, Minnesota, Category: Science

Caleb Kumar developed an algorithm that automates the diagnosis of bladder cancer. Bladder cancer is on the rise with more than 71,000 new cases in 2009. By first identifying indicative bladder cancer cellular characteristics, Caleb programmed morphometric algorithms to quantitatively examine the bladder cell images, and then engineered a Java neural network that differentiates cancerous cells from normal cells based on shape, color and curvature. Caleb’s software is accurate, quick and inexpensive compared to current methods, and has the potential to provide faster, cheaper and more precise diagnoses of cytological diseases.

Sunil Pai

Sunil Pai
Sunil Pai

Age:  17, Houston, Texas, Category:  Science

Sunil Pai constructed an inexpensive, nanotechnology-based system to determine quantum energies of superoxide. By examining oxygen in the liquid phase instead of the gas phase, his potentiostat system can determine the quantum structure for the electron attachment reaction of oxygen to superoxide. The determination of oxygen’s physical properties is essential to fully understanding the role oxygen and many free radicals have in cell processes. This experimentation method may establish other molecular properties that will offer new insights into biological and environmental processes.

$10,000 ScholarshipsDavidson fellows 2011 $10000 scholarship

  • Miss Cheenar Banerjee,16, Rochester, Minn.; Artificial Emotion: A Novel Way of Emotion Recognition for Affective Computing
  • Mr. Jayanth Krishnan,17, Mahopac, N.Y.; Regulatory Signatures of Cancer Cell Lines Inferred from Expression Data
  • Mr. Anirudh Prabhu,16, West Lafayette, Ind.; Lower Bounds for Odd Perfect Numbers
  • Miss Shalini Ramanan, 17, Richland, Wash.; Inhibition of Vascular Cell Migration by Bisdemethoxycurcumin: A Bioinformatics Based Approach to Identify Target Genes
  • Mr. Raja Selvakumar, 15, Alpharetta, Ga.; The Implementation of a GastroMicrobial Fuel Cell in Capsular Nanorobotics

From working with a natural dietary supplement to test its effectiveness in treating cardiovascular diseases, to creating a method for emotion detection by computers, and developing an algorithm that automates the diagnosis of bladder cancer, the accomplishments of the 2011 Davidson Fellows, who range in age from 14 to 17, are a testament to effective teaching and mentoring, supportive families and individual determination.

Founded by Bob and Jan Davidson in 1999, the Davidson Institute for Talent Development recognizes, nurtures and supports profoundly intelligent young people, and provides opportunities for them to develop their talents to make a positive difference.

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