COSAM News Articles 2015 April COSAM students, alumnus awarded National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowships

COSAM students, alumnus awarded National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowships

Published: 04/27/2015

Two COSAM students and one alumnus have been awarded prestigious National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowships.

The recipients are Chloe Josefson and Hannah Correia, both biological sciences doctoral students in the College of Sciences and Mathematics, and Erik Brush, a 2013 College of Sciences and Mathematics graduate in biological sciences.

The fellowship provides three years of support at $34,000 annually and an additional $12,000 cost-of-education allowance. The purpose of the fellowship program is to help ensure the vitality and diversity of the scientific and engineering workforce in the United States.

Josefson, a native of St. Petersburg, Fla., received a B.S. in biology and a B.A. in psychology at the University of South Florida. While at Auburn, she was awarded the university’s Cellular and Molecular Biosciences Fellowship and has studied under the direction of Elizabeth Schwartz and Haruka Wada, both of the Department of Biological Sciences.

For her dissertation, Josefson is researching how adult bird’s singing behavior is impacted by infection during early life. She is interested in avian stress physiology, ecoimmunology, ecological epigenetics and the neurobiology of bird song. Josefson has worked with Eastern bluebirds, house sparrows and zebra finches.

“Being awarded this fellowship is a great honor, as it allows me to focus solely on my research for the rest of my dissertation,” Josefson said. “This fellowship will allow me to explore different avenues of my research, and I am so excited to see what progress I can make in my field.”

Correia, a graduate of Huntingdon College in mathematics and biology, is concurrently a master’s student in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at Auburn. She is interested in bringing stronger statistical methods to the biological sciences and improving analysis of complex ecological systems.

She has participated in the National Science Foundation Research Experience for Undergraduates and last year, attended the fourth annual Masamu Advanced Study Institute in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe.

“The fellowship provides me the opportunity to focus on the development of statistical models that will aid in the study of biological processes and encourage greater collaboration opportunities for mathematicians and statisticians within the biological sciences,” said Correia.

Brush, of Atlanta, studied in the labs of Nanette Chadwick and Kenneth Halanych, while at Auburn. His research interests include fisheries management and marine conservation.

The National Science Foundation’s Graduate Research Fellowship Program recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science, technology, engineering and mathematics disciplines who are pursuing research-based master’s and doctoral degrees at accredited U.S. institutions. Students in their senior year or those who have not completed a full year of graduate study are eligible to apply. For more information, go to or contact Paul Harris, associate director for national prestigious scholarships, at  (334) 844-8731 or

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