Three Notre Dame doctoral students receive Materials Science and Engineering (MSE) fellowships

Author: Brett Beasley

Ndnano Fellows Fall2022 254

Three graduate students at the University of Notre Dame have received fellowships from the university’s Materials Science and Engineering (MSE) doctoral program.

Established in 2020, the MSE program has grown quickly. It now includes more than thirty students and has three graduates. Each MSE doctoral fellowship provides one year of funding in support of a student's materials science-focused doctoral thesis research.

“The MSE doctoral program draws upon Notre Dame’s multidisciplinary excellence in materials science,” said Alan Seabaugh, the Frank M. Freimann Professor of Electrical Engineering and director of the MSE doctoral program. “The fellowship allows faculty from different academic disciplines to collaborate as mentors of a student and expand their ability to solve problems they could not solve alone. The one-year fellowship provides the time to initiate research as the team seeks external funding.”

Sara Bey, a doctoral student in the Department of Physics & Astronomy, will work with Badih Assaf, an assistant professor in the Department of Physics & Astronomy and his Topological Quantum Matter Group. Bey’s co-advisor is Christopher Hinkle, a professor and the Bettex Collegiate Chair in the Department of Electrical Engineering. Her research project is titled “Three-dimensional chalcogenide materials for next-generation electronic devices.”

Johanna Olesk, a doctoral student in the interdisciplinary Bioengineering program, will conduct research with Nosang Myung, the Bernard Keating-Crawford Professor of Engineering. She will also work with two co-advisors in the department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering: assistant professor Jian-Xun Wang and research assistant professor Prakash Nallathamby. Olesk’s research project is titled “A.I. for predictive modeling of therapeutically useful biomimetic nanostructure followed by scalable synthesis of predicted nanostructure using modular assembly approach.”

Muhammad Sohail, a Chemistry & Biochemistry doctoral student, will work with assistant professor Emily Tsui an assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry. He will also work with co-advisor Jennifer Schaefer, an associate professor in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. Sohail’s research project is titled “Molecular spatial control over one-dimensional chalcogen polymers.”

Notre Dame's MSE doctoral program is a distinctive, interdisciplinary program representing seven departments and programs in the Colleges of Engineering and Science. To learn more about materials science and engineering at Notre Dame, the interdisciplinary doctoral program, and the fellowships, please visit


Materials Science and Engineering Graduate Program / University of Notre Dame / 574.631.0279 

About Notre Dame Research:

The University of Notre Dame is a private research and teaching university inspired by its Catholic mission. Located in South Bend, Indiana, its researchers are advancing human understanding through research, scholarship, education, and creative endeavor in order to be a repository for knowledge and a powerful means for doing good in the world. For more information, please see or @UNDResearch.

Originally published by Brett Beasley at on September 23, 2022.