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Supporting Promising Young Faculty: The 2010 Hellman Faculty Fellows Announced

Funds awarded to 30 junior faculty members at UC San Diego to propel new research

May 27, 2010

By Kristin Luciani

A total of $375,000 has been awarded to the 2010-2011 Hellman Faculty Fellows at the University of California, San Diego.  The funds awarded will support 30 faculty members in their scholarly work as they strive for tenure with the university. 

The Hellman Fellowship program was established at UC San Diego in 1995 with a generous gift of $2.5 million from Chris and Warren Hellman.  Its purpose is to provide financial support and encouragement to young faculty who show capacity for great distinction in their research and creative activities.    

"The selection process was quite a challenge this year, due to the outstanding caliber of the proposals submitted,” said Senior Vice Chancellor Paul Drake. 

Thirty faculty proposals were selected for funding in this awards cycle: 22 from the Arts and Humanities and Social Sciences divisions, and eight from the areas of Biological Sciences, Physical Sciences and Engineering.   

  “Given the current economic climate, the  selection committees chose to partially fund a number of proposals to assist a greater number of promising young faculty,” added Drake.  “We deeply appreciate the Hellmans’ continued generosity and confidence in UC San Diego’s excellent young faculty.”

The Hellman Fellowship enhances the individual’s progress toward tenure by providing funds for research projects and other scholarly efforts that establish credibility as a faculty member.  With the decline in state funding, private support for faculty research is critical to attracting and retaining the nation’s top professors and researchers at UC San Diego.  

  “Whether during moments of funding drought such as the one we are currently experiencing, or during times of funding abundance, the commitment made to the support of knowledge production by the Hellman family has consistently made it possible for junior faculty to seriously mount first projects,” said Roshanak Kheshti, a fellowship recipient in the department of ethnic studies.  Since its founding, more than 100 Hellman Fellows have been named at UC San Diego.    

Recipients in Physical Sciences, Biological Sciences and Engineering are Jurijs Bazilevs, structural engineering; Adam Burgasser, physics; Elsa Cleland, ecology, behavior and evolution; Amy Kiger, cell and developmental biology; Zhaowei Liu, electrical and computer engineering; Dragos Oprea, mathematics; Donald James Sirbuly, nanoengineering; and Andrea Rae Tao, nanoengineering.

Recipients in Arts and Humanities and Social Sciences are Anthony Ivan Burr, music; Kelly Allison Gates, communication; Mark Hanna, history; Gerald Mark Hendrickson, history; Sara Johnson, literature; Eun-Young Jung, music; Dayna Kalleres, literature; Roshanak Kheshti, ethnic studies; Dominique Lauga, Rady School of Management; Roger Philip Levy, linguistics;David Liu, psychology; Luis Martin-Cabrera, literature; Megumi Naoi, political science; Patrick Patterson, history; David Pedersen, anthropology; Babak Rahimi, literature; Katharina Rosenberger, music; Natalia Roudakova, communication; Christina Julia Schneider, political science; Anna Joy Springer, literature; Irina Telyukova, economics; and Kalindi Ann Vora, ethnic studies.

Media Contact: Kristin Luciani, 858-822-3353, kluciani@ucsd.edu

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