Congrats to Leyla Kabuli for Receiving the 2021 University Medal from UC Berkeley

Leyla Kabuli, a senior graduating in music and electrical engineering and computer sciences, is the winner of the 2021 University Medal from UC Berkeley. The 150-year-old University Medal recognizes a graduating student’s outstanding research, public service and strength of character, and comes with a cash prize. Leyla is currently working in Laura Waller’s research group and will continue with the Waller group as a graduate student in fall 2021.

By her senior year, she was fielding offers of full graduate fellowships from Berkeley, Stanford and MIT. She’s sticking with Berkeley for graduate school. “I might be biased, but Berkeley has the best electrical engineering program in the country,” says Kabuli, who was born in Berkeley and raised in Davis, California. She also credits the campus’s culture, diversity and grit for her decision to accept the Berkeley Fellowship for Graduate Study, which provides financial support for five years. As top graduating senior, Kabuli, 21, a simultaneous degree student in EECS and music, with a perfect 4.0 GPA, will speak this Saturday, May 15, to thousands of her peers, in cap and gown, at a campus-wide virtual commencement ceremony.


Congrats to Charles Dove for Receiving a Hertz Fellowship

Charles Dove uses artificial intelligence (AI) to harness the physics of light. A PhD student in electrical engineering at the University of California, Berkeley, Charles uses principles from machine learning and differentiable programming to create new methods for the simulation and fully automatic design of light-based technology. This capability would enable significant growth in the scale, scope, and capabilities of nearly all light-based technology, including biomedical imaging, cellular manipulation and characterization, optical telecommunications, photonic quantum computing, and LIDAR.

A researcher in AI since his freshman year at Clemson University, Charles is the inventor of multiple technologies that combine electromagnetic wave physics and machine learning. His method for the efficient recovery of blood-flow information from scattered laser light is currently being evaluated for potential use in optometry and brain surgery, and his method for 3D artificial vision through multi-frequency scattering offers a promising and practical alternative to conventional LIDAR.

Highlighting the Research Centers within JILA

STROBE is one of the 12 nationwide NSF funded Science and Technology centers. According to Ellen Keister, the STROBE Director of Education: “STROBE research groups have common challenges associated with big data, detectors, as well as pushing the limits of x-ray, electron and visible nano-imaging. STROBE enables research groups to address common challenges, enhance tabletop and national facilities and use new capabilities to address current nano and bio materials challenges.”

While STROBE works on collaboration between investigators within its center, it also encourages collaboration from a younger generation. “STROBE encompasses K-12 outreach, undergraduate education, graduate education programming, essentially focusing on how to build and maintain a top STEM workforce,” Keister comments. “- and do it in a way that is inclusive, and that provides students and trainees with the technical and soft skills and tools they need to be prepared and successful when they go out into the 21st century workforce.”

Exploring X-ray and Laser Science from Imagination to Application

Welcome to the inaugural episode of the President’s Innovation Podcast, a special CU on the Air series. Host Emily Davies speaks with distinguished professor Margaret Murnane, a fellow at JILA, which is a joint institute of the University of Colorado Boulder and the National Institute of Standards and Technology. Dr. Murnane is also a faculty member in the department of physics and electrical and computer engineering at CU Boulder, and has earned numerous prestigious awards for her work in ultrafast laser and x-ray science.

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