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Featured Student

The Office of Graduate Studies would like to highlight the achievements of our students both past and present.  Each semester we will choose one current student and one Alumnus.  If you would like to nominate a student or alumni for this honor please contact Rauncie Ryan at

The Office of Graduate Studies is proud to present our first Student of the Semester for Fall 2013.

Valerie A Rapson

Valerie is a graduate student working towards her Ph.D. in Astrophysical Sciences and Technology at the Rochester Institute of Technology. She earned her B.S. in physics and astronomy and minor in mathematics from the University of Rochester. Previously, Valerie has completed research on coatings for laser optics, global warming, and observational astronomy. Currently, she is conducting research on star and planet formation with colleagues around the world. Valerie is the president of the Rochester Academy of Sciences Astronomy Chapter, runs star shows at the Strasenburgh Planetarium, and participates in astronomy outreach in Rochester, NY. When she is not studying the stars, Valerie enjoys cooking, gardening, and attending hockey games, monster truck rallies and demolition derbies. Upon degree completion, Valerie hopes to work for NASA in the field of outreach, with goals of further engaging the public in astronomy and inspiring young people to become scientists.

You can read more about Valerie at

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