2018 Deans' Award Winners

Alan Aw

Alan Aw

Alan Aw is a senior majoring in Mathematical and Computational Science with honors, and minoring in Biology. He works in mathematical biology, applying discrete and continuous techniques and formulating stochastic and dynamical models to tackle problems in evolutionary genomics and archaeology. His paper with Professor Noah Rosenberg applying the theory of majorization to enhance the interpretation of population-genetic statistics has been provisionally accepted by the Journal of Mathematical Biology, and he is currently revising another paper that combines genomic data with ideas from cultural evolution and mathematical models to explain a worldwide population bottleneck occurring 5000 years ago. Alan has promoted and written about the STEM fields for Asian Scientist Magazine and Plus Magazine, and he has an Erdös number of three from past research in combinatorics. Professors Julia Palacios, Marcus Feldman, and Noah Rosenberg recognize Alan’s work as being “more like a PhD dissertation than the achievement of an undergraduate.” Professor Rosenberg writes that “PhD students, post docs, and we ourselves, learn from him all the time. He is careful, accurate and quick, and he sets the highest standard for himself. The originality, quality, and quantity of his work are all exceptional.”

 

Isabelle Foster

Isabelle Foster

Isabelle Foster is a senior majoring in Public Policy, minoring in Economics, and pursuing a coterminal master’s degree in International Policy Studies. Isabelle is “an exemplary student dedicated to development policy and philanthropy,” notes Professor Gregory Rosston. Professor Tom Mullaney writes, “she knows how to formulate problems that are meaningful, non-obvious, and researchable, and her instinct and commitment to intellectual and public policy work strikes me as very strong and well developed.” Passionate about food security and international development, Isabelle has focused on the application of technology to alleviate poverty and is currently doing research at the Center for Food and Security on campus. After taking a course with Professor David Grusky, Isabelle conceptualized a technological platform to increase communication amongst farmers’ cooperatives and received support from the Center for Poverty and Inequality to travel to Paraguay to further develop the idea. Isabelle was selected to attend the Clinton Global Initiative University conference for her work in Paraguay. At Stanford, Isabelle is also interested in connecting and empowering students. As a chair of the Student Advisory Group, Isabelle organizes meetings between the university administration and student body to increase communication and facilitate discussion on new initiatives. She also co-developed and co-directed a campus-wide, pilot Peer Mentorship Program with the VPUE to connect frosh and sophomores with juniors and seniors. Isabelle served as a student representative for the university-wide Long-Range Planning process, is a Hume writing tutor, and volunteers with Stanford’s Project on Hunger (SPOON) to donate extra dining hall food to local soup kitchens.

 

Lauren Killingsworth

Lauren KillingsworthLauren Killingsworth is a senior majoring in Biology with honors, and minoring in History. She studies the history of cartography, specifically maps of cholera produced by British physicians in the nineteenth century. Her paper, “Mapping Public Health in Nineteenth-Century Oxford,” was presented at the Barry Lawrence Ruderman Conference on Cartography and was published in the Portolan Journal of the Washington Map Society. She has received the Ristow Prize for Academic Achievement in the History of Cartography and was recognized as the Undergraduate Awards Global Winner in History. Professor Kären Wigen praises Lauren as an author “who combines features that are rarely found in a single student: historical curiosity, a head for science, and a consistent capacity for luminous prose.” Lauren has also conducted structural biology and biochemistry research at Stanford, the National Institutes of Health, and as an Amgen Scholar at Harvard. She is second-author on the paper “Structural Basis for Regulated Proteolysis by the α-Secretase ADAM10,” which was published in Cell. She has presented her research at the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology Conference and as a plenary speaker at the National Collegiate Research Conference. At Stanford she serves as the Co-Editor-in-Chief of the Stanford Journal of Public Health, mentors high school students through the Phoenix Scholars Program, and is developing a health coaching program at a local clinic for unhoused individuals. Next year she will attend the University of Cambridge to pursue an MPhil in History and Philosophy of Science and Medicine as a Gates Cambridge Scholar.

 

Josh Lappen

Josh Lappen

Josh Lappen is a coterm pursuing a B.A. in Classics and an M.S. in Atmosphere/Energy Engineering. He has focused primarily on climate, energy, and natural resource policy at the state and federal levels, conducting research on interstate grid management and authoring a series of journalistic projects on climate justice, coal history, and federal public lands management. In his junior year, he attended the COP21 international climate negotiations in Paris as a researcher attached to the California state delegation. He also wrote a comparative study on the history of federal coal leasing for the Department of the Interior which has been widely used by both government officials and outside researchers. Josh’s intellectual interests have led him to fields as diverse as maritime archaeology and marine biology, and to a variety of advisory and advocacy roles on campus. Recently, he served on the Research Working Group of Stanford’s Long-Range Planning Process. As a student organizer with Fossil Free Stanford, he helped lead numerous actions over four years, including a week-long sit-in which mobilized over 1,000 students, faculty, and staff for fossil fuel divestment. While at Stanford, he has won several awards for his journalistic and academic writing. Next year, he will continue his studies in environmental history at the University of Oxford as a Marshall Scholar. Two of Josh’s mentors, Professors Jody Maxmin and Joshua Landy, applaud him for distinguishing himself as a “journalist, a Legislative Intern, a Policy Director, a Research Assistant, and an environmental activist,” and praise him as a “genuine intellectual…caring passionately about the environment and combining a powerful intellect with an immensely calm and generous demeanor.”

 

Maya Lorey

Maya LoreyMaya Lorey is a senior majoring in Human Biology with a minor in Human Rights. At Stanford, she designed a unique, interdisciplinary framework for her studies and focused on women’s health and rights in conflict and post-conflict settings. As a junior, Maya completed a tutorial in Human Rights Law at Oxford University. For her Human Biology senior synthesis paper on the systematic use of rape as a weapon of war, Maya analyzes the impact of international and domestic courts on Rwandan Genocide rape survivors and proposes non-judicial justice mechanisms for Rohingya refugee women. Professor David Cohen writes that, “Her motivation arises from commitment to the underlying issues and a commitment to do justice to their complexity and importance.” Maya believes that philanthropy plays an instrumental role in dismantling systems of injustice and inequality. Last summer, Maya was a Sand Hill Fellow at the Skoll Foundation and next quarter she will be a TA for “Theories of Civil Society, Philanthropy and the Nonprofit Sector.” Maya received the President’s Award for Academic Excellence in her Freshman Year. She also received an international award for her academic writing. Maya serves as the Undergraduate Representative on the Board of Trustees Development Committee and sits on the WSD HANDA Center for Human Rights and International Justice student advisory board.  Professor Tanya Luhrmann calls Maya, “not just an excellent student, but a student who has become someone who actively engages in the world and has become someone intellectually trained to think deeply and wisely about that engagement.”  Next year, Maya is excited to continue her work in philanthropy and human rights as a Tom Ford Philanthropy Fellow. 

 

Kristin McIntire

Kristin McIntire

Kristin McIntire is a senior majoring in Human Biology with honors. She is the first author of a study she conducted with Professor Albert Wong investigating the survival and treatment trends of the deadly brain tumor, glioblastoma. Professor Wong praises Kristin for her “extraordinary contributions,” “intelligence,” and “advanced knowledge of clinical terms and concepts that typically only an advanced medical student possesses.” Kristin presented their findings to the international medical community at the Society for Neuro-Oncology Annual Meeting in 2017. Kristin is a leading contributor for a major clinical study at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute/Boston Children’s Hospital Childhood Brain Tumor Center, where she studies outcomes of pediatric patients with isocitrate dehydrogenase (IDH) mutations. She is the youngest member of the Make-A-Wish Foundation Young Professionals Advisory Council for business people under 45, and she has worked as a lead counselor and in other roles in Oncology and Sickle Cell Anemia at Camp Sunshine for children with life-threatening illness. Kristin is the founder of an emerging nonprofit organization, Practice with Pals, which works to involve college students to improve quality of life for children in medical treatment. On campus, Kristin is the director and founder of the Kids with Dreams writing program, which is publishing a book of art and writing by youth impacted by disabilities.

 

Carlos Valladares

Carlos Valladares

Carlos Valladares is a senior double-majoring in American Studies and with honors in Film and Media Studies. He writes regularly for the San Francisco Chronicle as a film and jazz critic, after working there in the summer of 2017 as a Rebele Internship-funded staff writer. He co-founded and is the editor-in-chief of “Untitled,” Stanford’s undergraduate art history and film studies journal. In his junior year, and with the support of Professor Alexander Nemerov and Jason Linetzky, he curated and wrote the wall-texts for “Abstraction and the Movies,” an exhibition at the Anderson Collection which paired up films with paintings by Abstract Expressionist artists; slated to run for only 3 weeks, it ran for 3 months. Alexander Nemerov calls Carlos, a “one-of-a-kind student” who is “the most natural young scholar of film [he has] ever encountered in 25 years of undergraduate teaching at Yale and at Stanford.” Drawing upon research funded by the Chappell-Lougee Scholarship, he is writing an honors thesis on acting and ensembles in the films of Richard Lester ("A Hard Day’s Night," "Help!"). He is a research assistant for Dr. Christina Mesa on her upcoming book on black and white race relations in popular American fiction and film. As the Managing Editor of Arts and Life for the Stanford Daily, he writes a regular column on film (especially those playing at the Stanford Theatre) and has interviewed directors such as Kelly Reichardt, Steven Spielberg, Whit Stillman, and Terence Davies. In addition to his outstanding achievements, Professors Shelley Fisher Fishkin, Scott Bukatman, and Marci Kwon, along with Lecturers Judith Richardson and Elizabeth Kessler, commend Carlos for his “rare gift of being able to extend his astute insights into film beyond the classroom to his fellow students and the broader public.”  

 

Jason Ku Wang

Jason Ku Wang

Jason Ku Wang is a senior majoring in Mathematical and Computational Science with honors and minoring in Biology and Digital Humanities. Professor Ami Bhatt commends Jason for “being extremely talented, highly motivated” and for having “an unparalleled innovative spirit.” He is the first-author of a medical informatics paper exploring applications of recommender systems to learning clinical order patterns, second-author of a structural biology paper published in Nature, and co-author of two other publications. He has delivered two oral presentations on artificial intelligence-assisted clinical decision support at national conferences and will present at a third conference later this year. During his junior year, he co-founded Stanford’s inaugural healthcare hackathon, Health++, which brought together 300 engineers, designers, business experts, and healthcare professionals to collaborate, brainstorm, and develop solutions to unmet clinical challenges in healthcare affordability. The hackathon now takes place on an annual basis with this year’s event bringing international students from China and Japan. With his two roommates, Jason organized CS 522: Seminar in Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare, which enrolled nearly 300 students this past fall. During his summers, Jason worked on large-scale data infrastructure at Facebook and Tableau Software. Professor Jonathan Chen states that Jason’s “advanced technical skills are visible in his primary production of R analysis code, customization of Python application code, and working with statistical collaborators to understand and implement analytic techniques, such as propensity score matching.” Next year, Jason will pursue a masters in global affairs with a concentration in health policy at Tsinghua University as a Schwarzman Scholar.

 

Matthew Yellowtail

Matthew Yellowtail

Matthew K. Yellowtail is a senior majoring in Native American Studies. He is a proud member of the Apsáalooke (Crow) Nation in Montana. As a freshman, Matthew had the privilege of participating in the first ever Indigenous Digital Storytelling Project. The program, organized by then CAPS counselor Virgil Moorehead, was monumental in helping him understand the role of oral traditions in reshaping Indigenous mental health, as well as challenging the status quo of historical methods and narratives. This program inspired Matthew to further explore the importance of oral tradition, leading him to create and teach his own course under the guidance of Karen Biestman. The class, titled ‘The Generations Project,’ allowed him and his peers to explore the role of digital media in protecting, preserving, and sharing Indigenous oral traditions in an ethical manner. Professors Tomás Jiménez and Teresa LaFromboise along with Karen Biestman, former director of the Native American Cultural Center, recognize Matthew as “an institutional border crosser, a weaver of tradition and innovation, and an intellectual change agent. His work on The Generations Project seeks to preserve tribal oral traditions by harnessing a spectrum of technology tools.” In addition, Matthew also holds a strong passion for filmmaking. Pursuing honors through the Department of Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity, he is currently writing a television series based in his hometown of Wyola, Montana. After graduation, Matthew hopes to pursue a career in filmmaking, creating stories that weave his cultural beliefs into contemporary settings. Above all else, Matthew hopes to increase the visibility of Indigenous voices and to make his community proud.