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2020 Named Scholarship Recipients

SPIE awarded $298,000 in optics and photonics education scholarships to 78 outstanding SPIE Student Members, based on their potential contribution to optics and photonics, or a related discipline. Award-winning applicants were evaluated and selected and approved by the SPIE Scholarship Committee. 

Since the program began, SPIE has distributed over $6 million dollars in individual scholarships. This ambitious effort reflects the Society's commitment to education and to the next generation of optical scientists and engineers around the world. Individual awards range from $3,000 to $11,000.

Kate Medicus, the 2020 Scholarship Committee Chair, noted, "Congratulations to the winners of the SPIE 2020 Education Scholarships! The committee has recognized these students for their potential for long term contribution to the field of optics and photonics. The accomplishments of these students are truly impressive and I look forward to seeing them grow in their careers in optics and photonics. Thank you to all the applicants and thosw who wrote recommendation letters. I also thank the committee and the SPIE staff that worked hard to complete the application reviews."


2020 Top Scholarship Winners:

The SPIE D.J. Lovell Scholarship was awarded to Jonathan Pinnell, Univ. of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg (South Africa). This is the Society's largest and most prestigious scholarship and is sponsored by SPIE.



Daniel C. Louie, The University of British Columbia (Canada), was awarded the John Kiel Scholarship which was established to honor SPIE founding member John Kiel, in recognition of his long-standing and significant contributions to the Society. This scholarship is sponsored by SPIE and is awarded for the student's potential for long-term contribution to the field of optics and optical engineering.


The Laser Technology, Engineering and Applications Scholarship was awarded to Gehrig Carlse, York University (Canada). This scholarship is awarded in recognition of a student's scholarly achievement in laser technology, engineering, or applications. Funds are provided in part by SPIE.


The Optical Design and Engineering Scholarship was awarded to David Lippman, The Institute of Optics, Univ. of Rochester (United States). The scholarship was established in memory of Bill Price and Warren Smith, both well-respected members of SPIE's technical community. This scholarship is awarded to a student in the field of optical design and engineering.


Yonghuan David Ren, University of California, Berkeley (United States), was awarded the BACUS Scholarship. This scholarship is awarded to a student in the field of microlithography with an emphasis on optical tooling and/or semiconductor manufacturing technologies. This scholarship is sponsored by BACUS, SPIE's Photomask International Technical Group.


Deesha Shah, Purdue University (United States), is the recipient of the Teddi Laurin Scholarship. Photonics Media is partnering with SPIE to fund the Teddi Laurin Scholarship to raise awareness of optics and photonics and to foster growth and success in the photonics industry by supporting students involved in photonics. This new scholarship is in memory of Laurin Publishing and Photonics Media founder Teddi Laurin.


Scholarships of Related Interest

The Nick Cobb Scholarship was awarded to Luke Long, who is pursuing his PhD in the physics department at the University of California, Berkeley, The award honors the memory of Nick Cobb, who was an SPIE Senior Member and chief engineer at Mentor Graphics who jointly funds the scholarship with SPIE. The scholarship supports the education of a graduate student studying in a field related to advanced lithography.



Brandon Hellman, James C. Wyant College of Optical Sciences, University of Arizona(United States) has been awarded the 2020 Michael Kidger Memorial Scholarship in Optical Design. This scholarship is supported by the Michael Kidger Memorial Fund in memory of Michael John Kidger, a well-respected educator, design software developer, and member of the optical science and engineering community. For more information, visit www.kidger.com/



Meet other SPIE Scholarship Recipients:

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