Twenty Illinois undergraduate and graduate students and faculty were recognized during the National Center for Supercomputing Applications' 2021 Fiddler Innovation Award ceremony in November, including chemistry undergraduate student Andrew Sunwoo Lee.
An undergraduate researcher in the lab of chemistry professor Taras Pogorelov, Lee is involved in the Students Pushing Innovation (SPIN) internship program. The SPIN program provides UIUC students the opportunity to apply their skills to real challenges in high-performance computing, data analysis and visualization, cybersecurity, and other areas of interest to NCSA.
In the Pogorelov Lab, Lee works on Multiscale Modeling of the Cell Membrane-Associated Phenomena. The cell membrane environment is complex and challenging to model, and the Pogorelov Lab combines computational and experimental molecular data and works closely with experimental labs to explore the fundamental mechanisms of membrane activity, structural dynamics of peripheral and transmembrane proteins, and drug development. These projects include modeling and analysis of the lipid interactions with proteins and ions that are vital for life of the cell.
Each year, students from NCSA’s SPIN, REU-INCLUSION, and Design for America programs have the opportunity to participate in the Fiddler Innovation Undergraduate Fellowship program. Undergraduate Fiddler Fellows are selected for their exceptional contributions to interdisciplinary research projects that explore new topics and innovation in their respective programs.
Seventeen undergraduates from various fields – spanning biology, chemistry, engineering, computer science, health sciences, information sciences and physics – received a $1,500 Fiddler gift award and recognition for their achievements. Two Fiddler Innovation Graduate Fellowships and one Fiddler Innovation Faculty Fellowship were also awarded and recognized during the ceremony.
The Fiddler Fellowship is part of a $2 million endowment from Jerry Fiddler and Melissa Alden to support NCSA’s Emerging Digital Research and Education in Arts Media (eDream) Institute at UIUC. In turn, this institute supports faculty and students who choose to step outside the boundaries to pursue innovation and research at all levels.