UB professor’s young protege wins prestigious Marjot Foundation Grant after being named a finalist in the Intel Science and Engineering Fair

From the University of Bridgeport News - January 14, 2013

By: Leslie Geary

Aheli Chattopadhyay, a senior at Foxboro High School in Massachusetts, has won First Place and a Marjot Foundation grant worth $4,500 to continue her research into carbon dioxide energy generation that she conducted at the University of Bridgeport (UB) under the supervision of professor Prabir Patra, who is a professor in the Biomedical Engineering Department.

A rising star who already has earned top honors for high school students (among them, a slot at the Intel Science and Engineering Fair), Chattopadhyah was directed to Patra’s lab at UB at the start of her junior year in high school by a professor at Harvard University, Patra said.

“She is an extraordinary student with a bright future ahead of her in science and engineering,” he added.

Her work at UB focuses on both the use of invisible ink-based micro-fluids for medical diagnostics and growing algae as a source of alternative energy. Her coworkers on the algae-derived energy research project are Ashish Aphale, a PhD student in the Computer Science and Engineering department at UB, and Kapil Mahakalkar, a UB biomedical engineering student.

Aside from winning Grand Awards at the Regional and Massachusetts State Science and Engineering Fair at MIT, Chattopadhyay was recently selected to be the sole U.S. representative in 2012 Sustainergy Youth Conference in Israel. She has also been a participant at American Junior Academy of Sciences in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Caitlin Feehery