Loyola University Chicago

Fellowship Office

Award Winners

Congratulations Amara Grajewski, Ricci Scholar and Gilman International Scholarship Winner!

A big Congratulations Amara Grajewski, a Ricci Scholar and now Gilman International Scholarship winner! Amara had previously been admitted to the Ricci Scholars Study Abroad program and now has also won a Gilman Scholarship to support her upcoming study abroad experience! When asked what winning the Gilman award meant for her future, Amara had this to say:

"When I received acceptance into the Ricci Scholar’s Program, I was equal parts excited and nervous. Excited, because I was now able to travel outside of the U.S., which I had never been able to do before. Nervous, because I support myself financially and didn’t know if I could save enough money this summer to live comfortably across the ocean. I applied to the Gilman Scholarship in the hopes that I could alleviate some of that stress. And- to my luck (and copious application essay editing) it did! I can now breathe a little easier knowing that whilst abroad, I will be able to focus on my research, and perhaps have some adventures along the way."

A huge congratulations to Matt Hyatt, recent National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Proposal (NSF GRFP) winner!

Matt Hyatt is a research assistant at Loyola's Software and Systems Laboratory (SSL). He has worked on a variety of investigations including the secure distribution of machine learning models and vision-based detection of synthetically generated western blots. Matt is co-advised by Dr. Daniel Moreira and Dr. George Thiruvathukal. Next year, he will pursue a PhD in machine learning and plans to study self-supervised methods for humanoid motion planning.

Visuomotor Behavior Cloning with Human Action Reconstruction

Robotic manipulators will be maximally useful if they can learn to function in environments originally designed for human operation. Recent advances in robot learning often rely on visual experiences to mimic the expert actions of humans. Following developments in large language models (LLMs), general robotic transformers treat interactions with a physical environment as a sequence modeling problem. These agents can perform various tasks including throwing away garbage, folding clothing, and making ramen noodles. It is commonly accepted that the collection of datasets of sufficient size and scale is a critical barrier to the design of smarter autonomous manipulators. In order to take the next step in embodied intelligence we must vastly increase the number of experiences robot agents can learn from. The primary objective of this work is to model several millions of human experiences as goal conditioned motion sequences to directly transfer knowledge of human behavior to agents in a self-supervised fashion. Moreover, simultaneously learning to model human and robot actions will eliminate problems with learning from human demonstration and benefit robust control in unseen environments.

Congratulations Dr. Guofang Wan!

Loyola University would like to congratulate our very own Dr. Guofang Wan on their selection as a Fulbright U.S. Scholar for 2024-2025 for Brazil!

Fulbright Scholar Awards are prestigious and competitive fellowships that provide unique opportunities for scholars to teach and conduct research abroad. Fulbright scholars also play a critical role in U.S. public diplomacy, establishing long-term relationships between people and nations. Alumni of the Fulbright Program include 62 Nobel Laureates, 89 Pulitzer Prize winners, 80 MacArthur Fellows, and thousands of leaders and world-renowned experts in academia and many other fields across the private, public, and non-profit sectors.

Independent research and participant surveys confirm that Fulbright exchange experiences lead to greater international co-publication, continued international exchange, and stronger cross-cultural communication skills.

The benefits of a Fulbright Scholar Award extend beyond the individual recipient. Fulbright Scholars raise the profile of their home institutions as well. We hope that Loyola University Chicago can utilize Dr. Guofang Wan’s engagement abroad to establish research and exchange relationships, connect with potential applicants and engage with Loyola’s alumni in Brazil.

Congratulations to LUC faculty member Dr. Kathleen M. Adams!


A huge congratulations to LUC faculty member Dr. Kathleen M. Adams who has received a Fulbright Specialist Award to Indonesia at
Universitas Gadjah Mada 's Tourism Study Program! Fulbright's offical press release reads as follows: 

The U.S. Department of State and the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board are pleased to announce that Kathleen Marie Adams of Loyola University Chicago has received a Fulbright Specialist Program award. Dr. Kathleen Marie Adams will complete a project at Universitas Gadjah Mada (Tourism Study Program), Faculty of Cultural Sciences in Indonesia that aims to exchange knowledge and establish partnerships benefiting participants, institutions, and communities both in the U.S. and overseas through a variety of educational and training activities within Anthropology.

Dr. Kathleen Marie Adams is one of over 400 U.S. citizens who share expertise with host institutions abroad through the Fulbright Specialist Program each year. Recipients of Fulbright Specialist awards are selected on the basis of academic and professional achievement, demonstrated leadership in their field, and their potential to foster long-term cooperation between institutions in the U.S. and abroad.

The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to build lasting connections between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. The Fulbright Program is funded through an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State. Participating governments and host institutions, corporations, and foundations around the world also provide direct and indirect support to the Program, which operates in over 160 countries worldwide.

Since its establishment in 1946, the Fulbright Program has given more than 400,000 students, scholars, teachers, artists, and scientists the opportunity to study, teach and conduct research, exchange ideas, and contribute to finding solutions to shared international concerns.
Fulbrighters address critical global issues in all disciplines, while building relationships, knowledge, and leadership in support of the long-term interests of the United States. Fulbright alumni have achieved distinction in many fields, including 60 who have been awarded the Nobel Prize, 88 who have received Pulitzer Prizes, and 39 who have served as a head of state or government.

For further information about the Fulbright Program or the U.S. Department of State, please visit http://eca.state.gov/fulbright


Congratulations Christina Wallis


Congratulations to LUC student Christina Wallis who was recently awarded the Gilman-McCain scholarship! Like the Gilman award, the Gilman-McCain award helps cover some of the costs associated with studying abroad.

When asked about winning the Gilman-McCain award, Christina had they to say: “When I decided to major in Biology on the pre-Physical Therapy track I didn’t think that studying abroad would be an option for me. Between costs and academic requirements, I had completely ruled it out as a possibility. When I learned about a biology course emphasizing conservation that went to Peru for spring break, I knew I had to take advantage of the opportunity. I am beyond excited and grateful for to be able to study abroad and to be a recipient of the Gilman-Mccain scholarship.”

Congratulations to Freeman-Asia Award winner Rhys Darr!

LUC student Rhys Darr has won Freeman-Asia Award through the Institute of International Education! The Freeman Awards for Study in Asia (Freeman-ASIA) provides scholarships for U.S. undergraduate students with demonstrated financial need to study abroad in East or Southeast Asia.

When asked to share a little more about the award and their time studying in Japan, Rhys had this to say: "During the summer of 2023, I studied in Nagoya, Japan doing a language intensive program at Nanzan University. During the two months in which I stayed in Nagoya, I got to study Japanese in all facets with fellow students from all over the world in order to develop a closer appreciation of the beautiful and rich language and culture of Japan. Due to Nagoya’s close proximity to other major Japanese cities, I also had the chance to take a field trip with some classmates to Kyoto to explore the incredible scenery of Kiyomizu Temple and Fushimi Inari Shrine. My favorite experiences include shopping in Shinsaibashi in Osaka, Waterbomb Music Festival in Nagoya, and all the delicious food I ate along the way.

I would not have been able to study in Japan without the help of the Freeman Asia Award. To me, winning this award meant a chance to engage in the rich culture of Japan firsthand. Additionally, through creating and working through a capstone project, I hope to educate others regarding the unique beauty of Japanese language and culture. The Freeman Asia Award has allowed me the opportunity to extend my love of the language and culture to others as a steppingstone towards my goals of living and working in the country in the future."


Congratulations Troy Murray!

Loyola University graduate sutdent, Troy Murray, has won the One in Tech and ISACA Chicago Chapter scholarship. When asked what this award would mean for them, Troy said: 

"The One in Tech and ISACA Chicago Chapter Scholarship will afford me the opportunity to build upon my graduate education, membership in Alpha Sigma Nu, and CS volunteer experiences (contributing to groups historically excluded including individuals with physical disabilities, low-income groups, and Veterans and individuals with psychiatric disorders) to pursue my career plans and goals in Computer Science.  This scholarship provides access to mentorship, opportunities for career advancement, education through events and meetings, and contacts with professional members of One In Tech and ISACA."

Marcus Flax, Loyola University Clinical Psychology Doctoral student has won the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation fellowship!

Marcus Flax is a second year Ph.D. student in the Clinical Psychology program. His research as part of ACCTION Lab focuses on providing culturally responsive psychodiagnostic assessments to Black and/or Latiné/Latino/Latina youth who are suspected of having ADHD. Marcus hopes to use mixed methods research to understand adolescent trauma experiences, coping skills and personal strengths to develop interventions that can be easily accessed by youth. As an HPRS fellow Marcus will be trained to become a leader who through his research and collaborations will influence public policy to build a Culture of Health and achieve health equity. https://healthpolicyresearch-scholars.org/scholars/marcus-a-flax/

Congratulation to Dr. Shermer on a Fulbright Scholar award to Canada!

Dr. Shermer will be the Fulbright Canada Distinguished Chair in Public Affairs in North America: Society, Policy, Media. Dr. Shermer will be finishing two book projects, an edited collection tentatively titled, Work, Capitalism, and Democracy as well as a new book, tentatively titled, The Business of Education. Dr. Shermer is looking forward to meeting and working with Canadian scholars and students.

Announcing the 2023 Fellowship Inventive Grant Recipients!

The Fellowship Internship Grant provides funding to LUC students, who have a summer unpaid internship that could support an eventual application to a nationally-competitive scholarship that the Fellowship Office works with.

This year, many Loyola students applied and twelve were selected. We are pleased to announce the 2023 winners and share more information about their exciting internship opportunities!



Italo Alves, Graduate Student This is an internship with the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Unilateral Coercive Measures. This office, which is part of the UN High Commissariat for Human Rights, is dedicated to investigating the harmful effects of unilateral sanctions on the enjoyment of human rights. During my internship, I will work on a project that examines how economic sanctions impact vulnerable communities, including individuals with disabilities, and industries such as civil aviation.


Kayla Moore, Junior I will be spending two weeks working with a team of students to operate a clinic in Guatemala through VAW Global Health Alliances. During this experience, we will be taking vitals and checking in patients, as well as shadowing doctors during patient exams. We will also be giving a presentation and doing activities with kids at a local school to help them learn about a health-related topic.


Ashley Goldsmith, Junior I will be an intern at Forging Opportunities for Refugees in America (FORA) this summer. I will tutor refugee students to fill their educational gaps and ensure they are caught up to their grade level. I will also work with FORA’s management departments where I will assist with community outreach research and educate families about the education system in the United States. I am very grateful and excited for this internship opportunity.


Paige Ann Armstrong, Sophomore My internship is with the Illinois State Police in Springfield, Illinois with Legal-FOIA. FOIA is the Freedom of Information Act, which is responsible for keeping the public in the know about the government. This includes helping process requests and releasing public records.


Sierra Wann, Junior This summer at FORA (Forging Opportunities for Refugees in America), I will be working as a full-day intern as part of their Restorative Justice Internship. FORA aims to bridge the literacy gap of refugees coming into America as well as to provide empowerment for those they work with. Half of the day of the internship is dedicated to working directly alongside students delivering High Dosage Tutoring (HDT) and the other half I will be learning the behind-the-scenes of a nonprofit organization. This will include community outreach, recruitment of more volunteers, as well as helping to educate families on the American and Chicago school system.


Sam Roberts, Senior This Summer, I will be interning at Chicago's largest LGBTQ+ community center, Center on Halsted. This opportunity will allow me to work with LGBTQ+ teens who've experienced trauma due to homelessness, negative interactions with law enforcement, and lack of familial support. During this time, I will be offering socioemotional support, as well as helping maintain a structured schedule of house chores and life skills development in housing proffered through COH's Youth Housing Program. In addition to conducting these wellness drop-ins, I will be further honing my social work skill set by writing and submitting grant applications, sitting in on development meetings, and working with Center on Halsted's Youth Programming department to meet the core needs of Chicago's LGBTQ+ teen population.


Johnnie Campbell, Graduate Student Johnnie is currently working with the Illinois Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (ILSAMP). Together, this group utilizes a collaborative effort to provide programs that improve the quality of STEM education for students and prepare them for careers in the STEM field. Through STEM educational research at Loyola University, Chicago, the Alliance is also focused on developing and disseminating innovative STEM mentoring model based on the academic, personal, and professional experiences of URM STEM students and their mentors. This summer, Johnnie will be contributing to ILSAMP with research on Black Men’s college experiences as they pursue their STEM degrees under the supervision of Dr. Demetri Morgan, School of Education.


Olivia Carfolo, Sophomore I intern at Children’s Research Triangle which is a nonprofit organization that provides psychological services to children and families in the Chicagoland area. As a Research Intern, I have had the opportunity to learn invaluable skills through observing psychological evaluations. I rotate through several different projects which allow me to collaborate on CRT's newsletter, score a variety of psychological measures, and interact with previous client families to learn about their experiences. My personal favorite task has been scoring surveys given to pregnant and postpartum women which allow CRT to provide developmental health care to baby's exposed to drugs and alcohol in utero. I am most looking forward to observing more psychological evaluations this summer!


Grace Bates, Junior I will be assisting Dr. Catherine Nichols in the storage, maintenance, research, and documentation of the May Weber Ethnographic Study Collection. Massive amounts of work go into museums collections from simple rehousing to discussions around repatriation. It will be my responsibility to assist in caring for the collection and many tasks that fall under that sentiment; from rehousing objects to make sure they are as safe as possible to discussions around repatriation.


Amanda Alvarado, Senior Bear Necessities Pediatric Foundation- I worked for them during the Spring 2023 school year and fell in love with the work they do to help children fighting such a brave fight. I made the choice to continue working as an intern over the summer to continue growing my skill as well as helping such a great organization. I will be working in person and working on my masters degree over the summer.


Maura Bradesca, Sophomore At the USCRI, I will be helping with resettlement of refugees in Cleveland by prepping new houses with furniture and all of their essential belongings, and organizing paperwork for them which includes resources such as food stamps, school enrollments and government social services. I'm excited for the paperwork specifically because I've never had the opportunity to help people access basic care they deserve, and this is what I'm hoping to do with my future career. I'm also hoping to practice grant writing for the company with the Community Organizer, so I can grow in my knowledge of grants and community engagement.


Connor Mautner, Graduate Student Amongst the 2022-23 FIG winners, Connor is unique as he started his own non-profit working with refugees in Chicago. The Chicago Refugee Coalition is a 501(c)3 established 2018. Since then, the organization has grown dramatically and has gained notoriety for their innovative, and responsive, relief model. CRC’s flagship is its first-of-its-kind Refugee Resource Center the organization runs out of Sullivan High School (affectionately known as Refugee High) in Rogers Park. Through this space, CRC operates a robust food banking program and has distributed over 100,000 meals since the program’s inception in August 2018. Additionally, the center distributes more than $400,000 of in-kind products annually though collaborative partnerships with corporate stakeholders such as Bombas, Casper Mattresses, Trader Joes, Whole Foods, and many others. CRC’s mission is to bridge the systemic services gap in the refugee resettlement space. CRC believes that, above all, their purpose is to ensure that Chicago is an open and equitable place to call home and that they contribute to facilitating a paradigm shift away from the Global North. More information about CRC can be found on their website, http://www.chicagorefugee.org.




Congratulations to Taryn Chovan for winning a Scholarship for Women Studying Information Security (SWSIS) award!

Computer Science major Taryn Chovan was recently awarded a Scholarship for Women Studying Information Security (SWSIS) through Applied Computer Security Associates (ACSA) and Computing Research Association Widening Particpation (CRA-WP)! Taryn will be graduatig in the Fall of 2023 and is interested in security because: "I think it is both fun and can contribute to a good cause. There are many people out there that selfishly attack innocent victims like hospitals, banks, and the elderly. Being in cyber security is a good opportunity to help prevent those attacks. It also a fun career field to be in – every day there is a new challenge or problem to solve and there is constantly something new to learn." Tarn also works part-time doing cyber security for the US military. Congratulations Taryn!

Congratulations to LUC student, Becca Curiel who was awarded a Benjamin A Gilman International Scholarship!

Congratulations to LUC student, Becca Curiel who was awarded a Benjamin A Gilman International Scholarship to travel to Spain in the Spring 2023 semester. Becca is a major in Global Studies and double minoring in Women & Gender Studies and Economics. When asked how this exciting opportunity impacted their future, here's waht Becca had to say: "Thanks to the support of the Gilman Scholarship program, I have learned from other cultures and gained a major international awareness that, as a Global Studies major, it has helped to reassure my career path and what I aspire to achieve in the future."

Congratulations to Becca!

Congratulations to LUC student, Rohan Sethi who has been named a 2023 Goldwater Scholar!



The Goldwater Scholarship Program was designed to foster and encourage outstanding students to pursue research careers in the fields of the natural sciences, engineering, and mathematics. The Goldwater Scholarship is the preeminent under-graduate award of its type in these fields.

Bio: I am an undergraduate student studying bioinformatics and biology with an interdisciplinary interest in biomedical and computer sciences. I have experience in applying computational approaches to study biomedical and public health applications with a goal to contribute to the growing field of precision medicine. I enjoy programming as a hobby and in my free time I like to play tennis and documentaries.

Title of research: A dynamic model of PI3K/PTEN signaling in macrophages

Research Desctiption: In neurodegenerative diseases (i.e. Alzheimer’s), microglia, the immune cells of the central nervous system, adopt an inflammatory phenotype that exacerbates the disease’s prognosis. PI3K/AKT/PTEN signaling pathways often regulate this phenotype, which we hypothesize can restore the microglia’s neuroprotective phenotype. I seek to computationally model the dynamics of key signaling proteins in the PI3K/AKT/PTEN pathway in microglial cells. Using ordinary differential equations to model the biochemical interactions of the key signaling cascades and machine learning to predict neuroinflammatory levels, I hope to identify potential therapeutic targets to help treat neurodegeneration.

Mentor name: Dr. Peter Kekenes-Huskey

Read more here: https://goldwaterscholarship.gov/


LUC students receive The National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program (NSF GRFP) honorable mention.

Congratulations to LUC students who have received an honorable mention for the prestigious NSF GRFP, the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program. This is a remarkable and noteworthy achievement. Congratulations to: 

  • Katherine Jane Torma, major in Chemistry - Chemical Synthesis
  • Farah Harb, major in Psychology - Clinical Science
  • Joseph Tidei, major in Physiology


Congratulations Fulbright ETA winner, Jenna Tuckerman

Congratulations Jenna Tuckerman

Congratulations to Jenna Tuckerman for being selected for the Morocco ETA for the Fulbright US Student Program! Click here to learn more about the scholarship.

Jenna Tuckerman Standing Under Tree In Courtyard

Major: Anthropology

Minors: French Language and Literature, Arabic Language and Literature

After teaching English in South Korea for a year, I wanted to find more academic adventures abroad. Fulbright seemed like the perfect challenge to improve my teaching abilities and continue to grow as a linguistics student. This would not have been possible without the support and guidance of the Anthropology and Modern Languages departments. Thank you! I am so looking forward to the experience and all that I'll learn.

Congratulations to Christine Severude for receiving the Goldwater Scholarship! Click here to learn more about the scholarship.

Christine Severude (they/them)


Major: Molecular Biology

Minors: Bioinformatics and Music

How the Goldwater helped me: The Goldwater Scholarship was instrumental in preparing me for graduate school. It taught me application-writing skills and helped me reflect on where I'm at in my research career. I've gained a lot of great opportunities for mentorship and outreach through the program! My advice to other students is to set your goals early and make a long-term plan to achieve them.

Congratulations to our Fulbright semi-finalists for 2023-2024

Sana Leebe

Jennifer Tuckerman

Brianna Powell

Sumayyah Haider


Congratulations to our CLS semi-finalist

Madeleine Lutterman