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Record number of ASU students selected for prestigious DAAD-RISE program

34 will participate in summer research internships in Germany


Group photo of 2024 DAAD-RISE award recipients

Thirty-four Arizona State University students (pictured above) have received the 2024 DAAD-RISE award. Photo courtesy the Office of National Scholarships Advisement

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May 10, 2024

The Lorraine Frank Office of National Scholarships Advisement has announced that a record-high 34 Arizona State University students have been selected for the prestigious DAAD-RISE award in 2024, significantly exceeding the university’s 18 winners in 2023 and 13 in 2022.

The 2024 ASU awardees represent a wide range of STEM majors, including aerospace engineering, biochemistry, bioscience, biomedical engineering, computer science, mechanical engineering and neuroscience.

Twenty-six of the winners are in the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering, eight are in The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and one is in the College of Integrative Sciences and Arts. Twenty-one are in Barrett, The Honors College.

Sponsored by the German Academic Exchange Service, the DAAD-RISE program offers summer research internships in Germany for undergraduate students from North America, Great Britain and Ireland. In their internships, students assist doctoral students and researchers on projects that match their skills and interests. About 300 scholarships are available each year. This year’s ASU cohort will begin their internships in mid-May.

“This cycle, ASU broke records for both the number of applications submitted and the number of applications awarded. Through partnerships with the School of International Letters and Cultures, Fulton Schools of Engineering and (The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences), we’ve built a culture of applying that extends throughout STEM disciplines across campus,” said Catherine Salgado, program manager in the Office of National Scholarships Advisement (ONSA).

Salgado explained that ASU’s success in producing DAAD-RISE awardees is due to its progressive cohort advising model, which allows students to work on their applications in small group settings and attend writing workshops where DAAD-RISE alumni and ONSA advisors provide guidance and feedback.

ONSA also provides support for students who are put on the DAAD-RISE waitlist or who are not selected.

“We host a ‘What’s Next Webinar’ that allows students to reflect on their application as a whole and learn about future fellowship opportunities. Regardless of the result, we want anyone who applies to DAAD-RISE through ASU to feel supported and excited for the next chapter of their journey. Many DAAD-RISE applicants also go on to apply to prestigious upper-division fellowship opportunities, such as the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program and Goldwater Scholarship,” Salgado said.  

Over the last four cycles, a DAAD-RISE awardee has been selected for the prestigious Goldwater Scholarship, the nation’s top honor for undergraduate STEM majors: Isabella Huckabee (2021), Jasmin Falconer (2022), Chloe Leff (2023), Timothy Chase (2024) and Leslie Bustamante Hernandez (2024).

The 2024 DAAD-RISE recipients from ASU, their majors and where in Germany they’ll study are:

  • Arshia Agarwal, junior, computer software, Karlsruhe.
  • Saanvi Agrawal, junior, computer science, Aachen.
  • Brianna Ashcroft, junior, mechanical engineering, Aachen.
  • Leslie Bustamante Hernandez, junior, biochemistry, Berlin.
  • Liam Caldwell, junior, mechanical engineering, Braunschweig.
  • Jared Chiaramonte, junior, computer science, Dortmund.
  • Meaghan D’arcy, junior, biomedical engineering, Heidelberg.
  • Kathryn Dick, junior, bioscience, Freising.
  • Megan Duncan, junior, materials science and engineering, Chemntiz.
  • Kai Goldsmith, junior, applied bioscience, Gottingen.
  • Soham Goel, sophomore, aerospace engineering, Wilhelmshaven.
  • Manas Srinivas Gowda, junior, computer science, Kaiserslautern.
  • Malea Grabow, junior, bioscience, Dortmund.
  • Lily Guerrero, junior, biomedical engineering, Wuppertal.
  • Kanav Gupta, sophomore, computer science, Gütersloh.
  • Matalin Hansen, junior, mechanical engineering, Chemnitz.
  • Ben Hanson, junior, computer science, Konstanz.
  • Ethan Hurt, junior, biomedical engineering, Marburg.
  • Casey Isabelle, junior, biomedical engineering, Kaiserslautern.
  • Diya Jim, junior, computer science, Wuppertal.
  • Lauren Kim, junior, neuroscience, Rostock.
  • Owen Kruger, junior, computer science, Illmenau.
  • Kiersten Lagerhausen, junior, biochemistry, Braunschweig.
  • Frans Emil Malapo, junior, computer science, Zweibrücken.
  • Anistynn Mendez, junior, molecular bioscience, Tuebingen.
  • Nandana Shibu Elizabeth, sophomore, computer science, Zweibrücken.
  • Toller Phipps, junior, electrical engineering, Kaiserslautern.
  • Suraj Puvvadi, junior, biomedical informatics, Juelich.
  • Angie Scanlan, junior, computer science, Aachen.
  • Noah Severinghaus, junior, mechanical engineering, Frankfurt.
  • Joshua Tint, junior, computer science, Munich.
  • Thinh Tran, junior, computer science, Juelich.
  • Albert Vo, junior, computer science, Wuppertal.
  • Arya Yadav, sophomore, computer science, Freiberg.

“I feel very proud that I can represent ASU globally, and I am very excited about all the further research and cultural experiences this opportunity has opened up,” said Owen Kruger, whose research will focus on uncertainty quantification for deep learning.

Kruger said he hopes to gain extensive hands-on research experience and bring what he learns in Germany back to his research at ASU.

“Exploring this new area will grow me as a researcher and help me better identify what area of deep learning research I may want to pursue in the future. I am also hoping that taking home these new skills can provide valuable perspectives to my ongoing research here at ASU, where I work on deep learning applications. Outside of research though, I’m hoping to absorb as much culture as I can while in Germany,” he said.

Lauren Kim will research the extent to which harbor seals are able to differentiate between time intervals and gain hands-on experience in zoological research, sharpening skills she will use in future career endeavors.

“My goals after graduating are to attend veterinary school and then become a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine who perhaps does research as well. So I believe working on a research project with harbor seals is ideally suited for these goals. ... In the port city of Rostock, Germany, I will have a unique opportunity to be right by the ocean, learning about the animals that thrive there,” she said.

“Caring for marine mammals in a research setting will add to my knowledge of different animal species, which I can apply in veterinary school and as veterinarian, treating my diverse array of animal patients."

Leslie Bustamante Hernandez said she is “excited, grateful and nervous” about the chance to conduct research abroad. Her project will focus on understanding the interactions between the immune system and the intestinal environment, particularly innate lymphoid cells (ILCs) and their roles in maintaining intestinal health.

“Coming from a family who has never traveled abroad, I am incredibly grateful that I get the opportunity to explore the world for them. Even better with a program that will place me one step ahead of my future goals. It is an honor to be selected and a validation to my commitment in research,” said Bustamante, who hopes in the future to obtain a PhD in immunology and conduct interdisciplinary research.

“Also, participating in international experiences like the DAAD-RISE program will provide me with insights into successful strategies for fostering diversity and inclusion in academia. I will engage with scholars who grew up in different cultures, and network with other scientists with similar interests,” she added.

Salgado encourages students to attend an information session in October and meet with her as soon as possible after the application opens to discuss how DAAD-RISE fits in with their goals and strategize a feasible application timeline.

The next six-week application cycle for the DAAD-RISE will open in November and close in December. Students who are interested in applying can reach out to ONSA at onsa@asu.edu for further information.

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