March 11, 2013
Chemical Engineering student Brian Rosen is embarking on a new journey to foster international research collaborations as the recipient of a Postdoctoral Research Fellowship from the J. William Fulbright Scholar Program.
Rosen, who will travel to Israel later this year to do post-doctorate work at Tel Aviv University, will work on a joint project with the U.S. Air Force and the Israeli Air Force to investigate new materials to help prevent corrosion in military jet engines.
Being selected as a Fulbright Scholar is an honor for Rosen. “I have been planning to do my postdoctoral work abroad in Israel for several years,” he said. “My future advisors at Tel Aviv University and I decided to apply for the award because we agreed that the work we were proposing, along with my relationship to the USA and Israel, fell in line with the goals of the Fulbright Scholar program.”
The internationally recognized program helps to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of the more than 150 countries that participate in the Fulbright Program.
The Delaware native, who received his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Delaware and master’s in chemical engineering from the University of Illinois in 2010, plans to graduate this spring from Illinois with his Ph.D. in chemical engineering. He says he chose the University of Illinois because of the quality of its engineering programs.
“Not only was the Department of Chemical Engineering doing exciting and novel research, but the infrastructure, shared research facilities, and libraries have provided me with many resources necessary for me to be a successful Ph.D. student,” he said.
Rosen says being at the department under the guidance of his advisors Professor Richard Masel (who is now retired) and Professor and Department Head Paul Kenis have helped him to be a creative, independent and productive researcher.
“Without the guidance from my advisors and fellow graduate students, I would feel completely unprepared to tackle this next stage in my career,” he said.
While working with Professor Masel, Rosen helped him start the company Dioxide Materials, Inc. which focuses on carbon dioxide conversion. “Dr Masel pushes his students to utilize their personal scientific strengths, and he has a true talent for knowing how to solve modern scientific problems through creativity,” he said. “As I become an independent researcher, or perhaps a professor, I will use what I have learned from him the rest of my career.”
Being interested in science has always been a part of Rosen’s life and a career in engineering was a natural fit. “I wanted to take cutting-edge science and transform these ideas into technologies that can improve people’s quality of life,” he said.
The scholar program is for two years; Rosen says after that time he plans to pursue faculty positions. “Being a Fulbright Scholar is something that will follow me for the rest of my career, and will help me to continuously be involved in research on an international scale even after the award has reached its completion,” Rosen said.