About

I am originally from Fort Madison, Iowa, where I graduated from Holy Trinity Catholic High School in 2010. I received my BS in Physics and Mathematics from Iowa State University in 2014. During the summer of 2013, I participated in the Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internship at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory. There, my interest grew in plasma physics and fusion energy research. That brought me to the MIT Plasma Science and Fusion Center, where I am now pursuing my PhD in Plasma Physics.

Activities

As a GRADUATE RESIDENT TUTOR in Simmons Hall, I live with and mentor over 300 MIT undergraduate students. I have enjoyed every minute living in the Sponge—a porous building with its own song—and getting to know some amazingly-talented, smart, and quirky kids. Read more about my experience as a GRT and playing scootah hockey here.

I sing! Watch my recent concerts of Britten/Vaughan Williams with the MIT CHAMBER CHORUS (April 2018) and my favorite piece, Carmina Burana, with the MIT CONCERT CHOIR (May 2017). I have also had the distinct honors of singing with Jacob Collier in this Emmy-winning documentary (December 2016), as well as Beethoven’s 9th Symphony with the Handel+Haydn Society for its bicentennial celebration (July 2015).

During summer 2017, I taught introductory Python to 80+ Palestinian and Israeli high schoolers participating in the Middle East Entrepreneurs of Tomorrow (MEET) program.  Based in Jerusalem, we met with students 5.5 days a week with the aim of fostering a welcoming, collaborative learning environment. Read more about my MEET experience with PSFC labmates here.

Teaching

  • TA for 22.63 Engineering Principles for Fusion Reactors, taught by Dennis Whyte | Fall 2018
  • Completed Kaufman Teaching Certificate Program | Spring 2018
  • TA/Grader for 8.624 Plasma Waves, taught by Miklos Porkolab | Spring 2017
  • TA/Grader for 8.613J/22.611J Introduction to Plasma Physics, taught by Anne White | Fall 2015

Education

MASSACHUSETTS INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY, Cambridge, MA, USA—PhD in Plasma Physics, Department of Physics, Plasma Science and Fusion Center, expected June 2019

IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY, Ames, IA, USA—BS in Physics and Mathematics, summa cum laude and with Honors, May 2014

HOLY TRINITY CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL, Fort Madison, IA, USA—Valedictorian, May 2010

Honors and Awards

  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology Energy Initiative Fellow | 2014-present
  • Student Marshall/Convocation Speaker, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Iowa State University | 2014
  • Phi Beta Kappa, Zeta Chapter of Iowa, Ruth and Clayton Swenson Award in the Sciences | 2013
  • National Merit Scholarship | 2010