Five grad students earn science foundation fellowships

PULLMAN, Wash. – Five Washington State University students have received National Science Foundation graduate research fellowships. Of 17,000 applicants, 2,000 students across the U.S. received the three-year awards.

The program, which recognizes outstanding graduate students in science, technology, engineering and math, provides a $34,000 annual stipend and a $12,000 cost of education allowance, according to the NSF website.

The students are:

Greg Collinge

Greg Collinge, who works with professor Jean-Sabin McEwen in the Gene and Linda Voiland School of Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering conducting research in computational catalytic chemistry.

The researchers develop atom-scale models of catalysts and reactions to better understand how they work. Catalysts are used in many chemical processes, including biofuels, plastics and hydrogen production. Collinge is working specifically to improve the Fischer-Tropsch reaction, a process to create chemicals and fuels from carbon monoxide and hydrogen.

Cameron Hohimer, a WSU Tri-Cities mechanical engineering doctoral student, who will explore the possibilities of soft robotics through 3D printing.

“Soft robotics is a relatively new area of study in which we are trying to create non-rigid actuators and components for robotics systems,” he said. “You see a lot of applications of soft robotics in creating humanoid robots. Obviously our hands are very dexterous. With soft robotics, you can design manipulators that are more robust that can grasp items with a wide variety of shapes and sizes.”

Vanessa Rose

Vanessa Rose, a WSU Vancouver student in environmental and natural resource sciences, whose research examines the interactive effects of elevated nutrient levels and zooplankton grazing on cyanobacteria blooms in the Columbia River and freshwater lakes and reservoirs across the Pacific Northwest.

She works in the Aquatic Ecology Lab under the direction of Steve Bollens, professor, and Gretchen Rollwagen-Bollens, clinical associate professor, both in the School of the Environment and School of Biological Sciences.

Travis King, School of the Environment, who works in the lab of Daniel Thornton. Read an earlier story about him at

Joseph Taylor, a WSU graduate student in entomology. See an earlier story about him at