Awards & Laurels

Helping the Socially Disadvantaged

Rishi Sharma’s passion for community service can be traced back to his parents. While growing up in Dubai, Sharma watched his parents, who are both doctors, hone their expertise in the medical field. According to Sharma, as his parents advanced in their careers, they never forgot about the people around them.

“As they moved up the ladder, they used more of their experience to invest in the community,” said Sharma, a biochemistry and molecular biology major in the UC Davis College of Biological Sciences. 

$2 Million NIH Grant Expands Grad Program for Underrepresented Students

Aldrin Gomes, a professor in the Departments of Neurobiology, Physiology and Behavior, and Physiology and Membrane Biology, can still recall the reality he faced when he came to the United States to conduct postdoctoral research. Growing up in Trinidad and Tobago, Gomes was accustomed to the cultural diversity of the island. But shortly after stepping on American soil, he started experiencing things he didn’t understand.

$1 Million Keck Foundation Grant Backs Research to "Build a Brain"

A team of scientists from UC Davis and Rice University are starting small as they begin to figure out how to build an artificial brain from the bottom up.

Celina Juliano, an associate professor in the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, and Jacob Robinson of Rice University’s Brown School of Engineering have won a $1 million Keck Foundation grant to advance the team’s synthetic neurobiology effort to define the connections between neurons and muscles that drive programmed behaviors in living animals.

Assistant Professor James Letts Wins Department of Energy Early Career Award

Three UC Davis researchers, including Assistant Professor James Letts, will receive funding from the Early Career Research Program of the U.S. Department of Energy. They are among 83 researchers at U.S. universities and national laboratories funded by the program this year. The awards are of $150,000 for summer salary and research expenses each year and are intended to last for five years.

Jodi Nunnari Elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Jodi Nunnari, a distinguished professor and chair in the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, is one of four UC Davis professors who have been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Founded in 1780 by John Adams, John Hancock and others, the academy honors excellence and includes leaders from every field of human endeavor including scientists, artists, performers, poets and political leaders.

Michael Savageau Receives 2021 Akira Okubo Prize

Michael Savageau, a Distinguished Professor Emeritus in the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics in the College of Biological Sciences, and the Department of Biomedical Engineering in the College of Engineering has been named the recipient of the 2021 Akira Okubo Prize.

Professor Nitzan Shabek Receives NSF CAREER Award

Nitzan Shabek, an assistant professor in the Department of Plant Biology, has received a $837,000 CAREER Award from the National Science Foundation. The five-year award will support Shabek’s research into elucidating the sensing mechanism of an emerging and unique class of plant hormones. Additionally, as an integral part of the research activities, this project will create a unique teaching platform and outreach program to encourage young students to pursue knowledge in STEM.

UC Davis Genome Center Featured in The New York Times

Late in January, the UC Davis Genome Center—a keystone part of the collaborative effort between UC Davis and surrounding communities to fight the spread of COVID-19—appeared in a New York Times article that suggested the approach to rapid testing and contact tracing in Davis might be a national model.

CBS Student Receives Prestigious Marshall Scholarship

By Sharon Knox

College of Biological Science student, Naomi Murray ’21, who is majoring in evolution, ecology and biodiversity, has just been awarded the prestigious Marshall Scholarship. She will pursue two Master of Science degrees, one in climate change at University College London, the other in science communication at the University of Manchester to help her communicate about climate change.