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The Robert F. Furchgott Society

Robert F. Furchgott Award for Excellence in Research

The Committee of the Faculty of the School of Graduate Studies has recommended that the School of Graduate Studies initiate an award to honor each year the graduate student whose research, as represented by the thesis document, is considered most outstanding among the cohort of graduating students. All students who have submitted a completed thesis between the deadline for graduation of the previous year and the deadline for graduation of the current year will be eligible for the award. The nominee must be nominated by his/her thesis committee and the nomination must be accompanied by a letter from the thesis sponsor that includes a statement of the student's role in designing, executing and interpreting the results of the thesis as well as a statement about the importance of the work described in the thesis.A committee of three faculty members (one from each graduate program) selected by the program executive committee shall read the abstracts of theses of all nominees. After selecting 3 to 5 (or more) theses to be considered, the committee will read these in their entirety and select the student with the thesis deemed most deserving of the award.

The process by which the awardee is selected begins with a nomination from the student's thesis committee comprising at least four graduate faculty not including the thesis advisor. The faculty will have carefully read and critiqued the written document and evaluated the substance and creativity of the student's research as well as its contribution to the field of science. Nomination is followed by a letter of support from the thesis advisor. In that letter the advisor is asked the following: to describe the student's precise role in designing and performing the project, to document the student's research achievements, and to confirm the novel contributions of the thesis research to the body of science. The thesis abstracts of all student nominees, the letters of support and the theses are then read by a committee of the graduate faculty selected for expertise by the executive committees of each PhD program.

If you have any questions, contact Dr. Mark Stewart at extension 1155 or email him at mark.stewart@downstate.edu