Our recently graduated alum, Niksa Praljak, has been awarded 2020 NSF Graduate Research Fellowship (GRF) in the spring 2020. NSF GRFP is extremely competitive and prestigious award that “recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported STEM disciplines who are pursuing research-based master's and doctoral degrees at accredited US institutions. The five-year fellowship includes three years of financial support including an annual stipend of $34,000 and a cost of education allowance of $12,000 to the institution.
Niksa graduated as Summa Cum Laude from CSU's Jack, Joseph & Morton Mandel Honors College with BS Honors degrees in Physics and Math in the spring 2020. While being an undergraduate he performed research with Dr. Resnick (as part of CSU’s REU), Dr. Ryan, and Dr. Hinczewski (Physics, CWRU). Niksa presented his research at the OSAPS at Kettering, at the APS March Meeting in Boston, and to SPS at CSU. His research was published in 2 peer-reviewed journals. In addition to his academic and research successes, he helped the SPS physics outreach effort at Campus International School and served as the SPS-Math Club liaison, organizing SPS seminars and Physics Olympics. Niksa was chosen as the Spring 2020 COSHP Valedictorian. In the fall 2020, Niksa joined a Ph.D. program in Biophysical Sciences at the University of Chicago.
Niksa is a second Physics Honors BS graduate from CSU who got this prestigious NSF award. Dr. Krista Freeman (’12) got it in 2013 at the beginning of her physics PhD studies at the Carnegie Mellon University.