Washington University, St. LouisEngineering

Alumna Professor Jennifer Dionne Named Winner of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers


Dr. Jennifer Dionne, a Washington University graduate (BSSSE 2003) and now an assistant professor in the department of Materials Science and Engineering at Stanford University, was named, along with 101 other researchers, as a winner of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE). The PECASE is an award given to researchers, in the early stages of their careers and coming from various government agencies, who have shown great promise of future success in their given field. The PECASE is the highest honor that can be bestowed upon early career science and engineering professionals by the United States government.

Dr. Dionne was awarded the PECASE “for pioneering contributions to the control of light-matter interactions on deeply subwavelength scales, for shedding new light on nanoscale physical, chemical, and biological phenomena, and for enthusiastic leadership and service within the scientific and broader communities.” Some examples of these pioneering contributions are: the design of a broadband negative index material, the development of a subwavelength silicon electro-optic modulator, and a new proposed technique for direct optical tweezing of small particles and proteins, among others. Furthermore, Dr. Dionne’s research has led to “novel theoretical and experimental techniques for manipulating light on subwavelength scales.”

On the awardees, President Obama remarked, “The impressive achievements of these early-stage scientists and engineers are promising indicators of even greater successes ahead. We are grateful for their commitment to generating the scientific and technical advancements that will ensure America’s global leadership for many years to come.” President Obama will further honor the PECASE recipients in an award ceremony to take place in the coming year.

For the White House article and a complete list of this year’s PECASE recipients, which includes Dr. Andrew Yoo of the Washington University School of Medicine, see the full press release here.


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Washington University in St. Louis School of Engineering & Applied Science, Department of Electrical & Systems Engineering

Green Hall, CB 1042, 1 Brookings Drive, Saint Louis, MO, USA 63130
Phone: (314) 935-5565, Fax: (314) 935-7500

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