President Barack Obama sought out the nation’s best and brightest scientists and found one right here at Penn State.
Dr. Jennifer Miksis-Olds was selected as one of 105 people to receive the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers. The award is the highest honor the government gives to professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers.
“These early-career scientists are leading the way in our efforts to confront and understand challenges from climate change to our health and wellness,” President Obama said when he announced the recipients. “We congratulate these accomplished individuals and encourage them to continue to serve as an example of the incredible promise and ingenuity of the American people.”
Aside from impressing the president, Dr. Miksis-Olds’ is currently a senior research associate and an associate professor. She went to Harvard for her undergrad and went on to receive her masters in science from UMass before getting her Ph.D. in Oceanography from the University of Rhode Island.
Dr. Miksis-Olds’ hopes to answer biological questions in both the marine and terrestrial environments. In her bio online she said her primary interests include animal behavior and communication, the effect of anthropogenic activities on animals and their environment, and the development of technology to observe animals in their natural environment.
The Presidential Early Career Award hopes to “highlight the key role the administration places in encouraging and accelerating American innovation to grow our economy and tackle our greatest challenges.” According to the president’s announcement, recipients are selected for their pursuit of innovative research at the frontiers of science and technology and their commitment to community service as demonstrated through scientific leadership, public education, or community outreach.
Congratulations Dr. Miksis-Olds!