February 21, 2011

Johns Hopkins astrophysicist wins Sloan Research Fellowship

Nadia L. Zakamska of the Krieger School’s Henry A. Rowland Department of Physics and Astronomy at Johns Hopkins has received a Sloan Research Fellowship to continue her work that uses Earth- and space-based telescopes and large data sets to answer important questions about the universe and its origins.

Administered by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the fellowship recognizes early-career scientists and scholars with two-year $50,000 grants aimed at helping them establish their laboratories and advance their research. Zakamska, 31, was one of 118 young scientists or economists to receive the award this year, in recognition of their potential to contribute to academic advancement. Since the Sloan Foundation began awarding fellowships in 1955, 38 recipients have won Nobel Prizes later in their careers.

“I am very excited to receive a Sloan Research Fellowship because I am looking forward to welcoming postdoctoral fellows and graduate student researchers into the group I am building at Johns Hopkins, and the grant will help support these ongoing efforts,” Zakamska said.

Zakamska accepted an assistant professorship at Johns Hopkins in July 2010. She is spending this year as a research associate at the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology at Stanford University, supported by the Fred Kavli Institute Fund, and will start full-time work on the Johns Hopkins Homewood campus in July 2011.

Zakamska earned her master’s degree in theoretical physics from the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology in 2001 and her doctorate in astrophysics from Princeton University in 2005. From 2005 to 2010, she was at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, N.J., as both a postdoctoral fellow on a NASA Spitzer Fellowship and as a long-term member on a John N. Bahcall Fellowship. While at Princeton University, she was awarded the Charlotte Elizabeth Procter Fellowship.

“The Sloan Fellowship is a fitting recognition of both Nadia’s accomplishments and her potential for the future,” said Daniel Reich, chair of Physics and Astronomy at Johns Hopkins. “We look forward to her continued development as a scientist and as a leader in her field.”