ME Graduate Student Zhiwei Fang Wins Materials Research Society Outstanding Graduate Student Award

April 22, 2021
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Zhiwei Fang, a materials engineering graduate student in the Walker Department of Mechanical Engineering at UT Austin, received the prestigious MRS Graduate Student Award for best materials science graduate research at the 2021 Materials Research Society (MRS) Spring Meeting.

Zhiwei is the only graduate student from UT Austin to be recognized this year. As the top honor for graduate students in materials research community, the award is intended to honor and encourage graduate students whose academic achievements and current materials research display a high level of excellence and distinction.

Zhiwei won this award for his research works on designing two-dimensional nanomaterials for electrocatalysts applications. Working with his supervisor Prof. Guihua Yu (Yu Research Group), Zhiwei has published exciting researches on several prominent scientific journals including Advanced Materials, Angewandte Chemie, Journal of American Chemical Society, Nano Letters, ACS Nano, Energy & Environmental Science, PNAS.

Fang believes that winning the MRS Graduate Student Award is one of the most significant events of his professional career. Born in Anhui, China, Fang received his B.S. degree in chemistry from the University of Science and Technology of China in 2016, and began his Ph.D. studies with Prof. Guihua Yu in the Walker Department of Mechanical Engineering in Fall 2016. Fang's current research focuses on the controlled synthesis and design of cost-effective nanomaterials as alternatives to precious catalysts for some key chemical processes, such as electrocatalytic water splitting and ammonium synthesis. 

Fang states, "It is such an honor to be recognized for my contributions to the materials research fields, and it encourages me to work even harder and take more responsibility. What starts here changes the world. I will keep pursuing my dream by designing advanced materials for efficient energy and environmental applications. I believe the future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams."

MRS Graduate Student Awards are intended to honor and encourage graduate students whose academic achievements and current materials science research display a high level of excellence and distinction. MRS seeks to recognize students of exceptional ability who show promise for significant future achievement in materials research and education.