The Optica Foundation in keeping with Optica values of inclusivity and impact, announced the inaugural class of Amplify Scholars supporting Black students and their passion for light science. The Foundation had previously announced that starting in 2022, they are awarding ten US$7,500 scholarships. The scholarships are coupled with Optica membership and a mentoring program. The Optica Foundation is supporting the growth of a global network of Black scientists working in optics and photonics. In response to the outstanding pool of applicants, the Optica Foundation Board has awarded an additional five scholarships for a total of 15 newly named beneficiaries.
"The pool of candidates from over 20 countries was impressive. It was inspiring to review these researchers' applications, learning more about their passion for optics, science and engineering. I am looking forward to following the careers of these exceptional young minds," Optica member of the review committee, George Okyere Dwapanyin, University of St Andrews, United Kingdom.
“I’m grateful and excited to have been selected as a recipient of the Amplify Scholarship! I look forward to furthering my research with the funding and mentorship that will be provided to me,” said Arielle.
Arielle is a first-year Ph.D. student working with Prof. Christine Hendon in the Structure Function Imaging Laboratory. Her research interests include developing deep learning and image processing algorithms to characterize and map tissue architecture within optical images of the heart. This work will aid in the guidance of ablation therapy in the left atrium for the treatment of atrial fibrillation, a condition that causes the heart to beat quickly. She is passionate about outreach and is looking forward to working with students within New York City.