Undergraduate Awards

Ian W.  Shepherd Award

The Ian W. Shepherd Memorial Award was established in 1979 in honor of Department Chair Ian Shepherd, who led the department from August 1977 until his untimely death in January 1978. Shepherd, who was affiliated with Cornell University, Dupont, and Manchester University before joining Michigan Tech, was deeply interested polymer spectroscopy and hoped to make Michigan Tech a center for Raman spectroscopy.

The award is presented each year to the most outstanding physics graduate or graduates. The most promising of seniors are presented with a check and have their names engraved on a plaque, which is displayed in the physics department.


  • 2020 - Adam Krueger and River Leversee
  • 2019 - Nathan Schlorke
  • 2018 - Illiya Chibirev and Crystal Massoglia
  • 2017 - Ben Manning and Kelci Mohrman
  • 2016 - Angela Small

Department Scholar

The Department Scholar a rising senior who best represents student scholarship at Michigan Tech. This outstanding student is considered excellent not only by academic standards, but also for participation in research scholarship activity, levels of intellectual curiosity, creativity, and communication skills.

  • 2019 - River Leversee
  • 2018 - Jon Berman
  • 2017 - Crystal Massoglia
  • 2016 - Floyd Johnson

Provost's Award for Scholarship

The recipient of this award is chosen from among the previous year’s Department Scholars.

  • 2013 - Michael Adler

Goldwater Scholar

The Barry Goldwater Scholarship is a highly competitive national award that supports juniors and seniors preparing for research careers in natural sciences, mathematics, and engineering.

  • 2011 - Hansen Nordsiek

Woodrow Wilson Georgia Teaching Fellowship

The Woodrow Wilson Georgia Teaching Fellowship seeks to attract talented, committed individuals with backgrounds in the STEM fields—science, technology, engineering, and mathematics—into teaching in high-need Georgia secondary schools.

  • 2017 - Ben Manning

Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships

Summer Undergraduate Researcher Fellowships (SURF) are a competitively-awarded fellowship open to students who have at least one semester remaining after the summer.


Casey Aldrich
Advisor: Robert Nemiroff
Project: Cataloging NASA’s Fermi Satellite’s Super-GeV Photons

Renato Pinto Reveggino
Advisor: Claudio Mazzoleni
Project: Measuring the optical properties of mineral, and carbonaceous aerosols at 450 nm for atmospheric research