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Elizabeth Holzenthal Receives Prestigious NSF Graduate Fellowship

Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2016

Congratulations to OSU College of Engineering, ARCS scholar Elizabeth Holzenthal, School of Civil and Construction Engineering, coastal and ocean engineering.  Elizabeth was recently named a recipient of an NSF Graduate Fellowship, (GRFP). Elizabeth, a first year scholar, whose donors are Diane and Dick Alexander, is working on a project aimed at contributing to the development of a new generation of natural hazard engineering. 

The NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) helps ensure the vitality of the human resource base of science and engineering in the United States and reinforces its diversity. The program recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines who are pursuing research-based master's and doctoral degrees at accredited United States institutions. 

The NSF-GRFP is the oldest fellowship program in the US supporting STEM fields. As well as the recognition that comes with this fellowship, there is a 3 year stipend and opportunities for international research and professional development. Since 1952 there have been 50,000 fellows chosen from more than 500,000 applicants.  Forty two fellows have gone on to become Nobel Laureates, and more than 450 have become members of the National Academy of Sciences. 

Elizabeth explains about her research, "When tropical and extra-tropical cyclones make landfall, the most devastating threat to life and property is storm surge.  More than half of the global population lives within a coastal zone, and as this number continues to rise, the demand for effective and efficient surge protection is greater than ever."  Her project aims to develop an integrative model that combines engineering, environmental, social, and economic factors to evaluate the risk and resilience of hybrid surge reduction strategies. A computational model of the risk and resilience of integrated engineering strategies is proposed, which will facilitate a comprehensive, cost effective plan of defense against coastal hazards.

Read about Dylan Anderson (Civil and Construction Engineering at OSU) and Michael Lam (Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at OSU) who received an NSF-GRFP in April 2014.