Student Profiles

Georgetown Physics Grad Student preforming demos

Welcome the Class of 2021!

Orelle Bulgin

Orelle received his BS degree in Physics-Bioscience from Chicago State University. While he was there, he conducted research in high energy physics with the ALICE at CERN relating to the studies of cosmic ray muon radiation and its applications to Archeometry. His thesis surroundedspintronics and  the magneto-transport properties of InMnAs magnetic diodes where they worked on exploiting the magnetic spin component of a compound for diode optimization. Orelle’s current interest is in radiology and imaging, specifically how we can use improved laser technology to administer more accurate therapeutic treatment to patients to reduce exposure to radiation toxicity. Orelle was also a NCAA D1 track and field athlete who outside of work and track enjoys cooking , watching sports and the stock market.

Alexis Demirjian

Alexis is originally from Westchester, New York, she received her B.A. in physics in May 2021 from Barnard College of Columbia University. During her time as an undergraduate she pursued computational work in a variety of fields. In the field of astrophysics, Alexis successfully developed Python programs that searched for globular cluster stellar streams in the Andromeda Galaxy based on the Rolling Hough Transform machine vision algorithm. From this project she was able to coauthor the paper “The Hough Stream Spotter: A new Method for Detecting Linear Structure in Resolved Stars and Application to the Stellar Halo of M31”. Alexis then went on to pursue plasma physics during her time as a SULI student. Alexis successfully wrote an automated algorithm in Matlab to filter out noise, background and determine the intensities of spectral lines in plasma data. She is currently looking forward to pursuing Georgetown’s Industrial Leadership in Physics PhD track and gaining experience in experimental physics. Outside of physics, Alexis loves to dance and can be found spending time with her dogs from home.

Fabiola Diaz Ruiz

Fabiola, half artist, half physicist, and full nerd graduated from Francis Marion University with a BS degree in physics and a minor in mathematics. During that time, she completed research of the hyperfine structures of Rubidium using saturation absorption spectroscopy and assisted with researching the Raman spectroscopy of graphene for gas sensing applications at Howard University. Uniting her interest in physics and art, she also worked on researching the composition of oil paint pigments using X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy. She hopes to obtain a deeper understanding of physics to share that knowledge effectively with others and help them see the beauty and meaningfulness of physics.

Austin Howard

Austin graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Physics and Mathematics at Eckerd College in Saint Petersburg, Florida. During undergraduate study, Austin focused on research within the fields of Dynamical Systems and Synchronization by contributing to the design and construction of an experimental system of approximately 1,000 electronic Wien bridge oscillators. Using this experimental system, Austin completed an undergraduate dual thesis in Mathematics and Physics titled “Hilbert Transforms and Oscillator-Based Ising Machines.” While Austin’s undergraduate focus was contained within Dynamical Systems and Statistical Physics, he is excited to explore other fields of research such as Optics and its applications in medical and astronomical imaging. Outside of his research Austin is hard to find; he is often on a secluded hiking trail or reading various books in the confinement of his home.

Tahmida Raheen Iqbal

Tahmida received her BS degree in Physics from University of Dhaka, Bangladesh where she conducted research in hard condensed matter and her research focus was on analyzing structural and electrical properties of doped, co doped and pure Barium Titanate based materials. She also worked as a research scientist in Bangladesh Atomic Energy Commission and gained some experience with radiation and health physics. Then she went on to pursue MS degree in Physics at University of Texas at El Paso and did research in area of soft condensed matter. She wrote her MS thesis on impact of hydrophobic cargoes in micelles and variation of structural properties near critical transition zone. Tahmida’s current research interest includes soft condensed matter and biophysics. Outside of her work, she loves cooking different recipes and travelling.

Connor Jones

Connor obtained his B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering from Virginia Tech. His undergraduate research topics included surface chemistry, nanocomposite fabrication, and quantum mechanical computational modeling. After graduation, he was contracted to the U.S. Department of Energy at Technomics Inc., where he worked on creating and maintaining portfolio cost estimates to modernize infrastructure throughout the national laboratories. Recently, he obtained his M.S. degree in Applied and Engineering Physics from George Mason University. His master’s thesis investigated the role of rare-earth elements on the magnetic and magnetotransport properties within a family of electronic topological kagome magnets. Outside of the lab, Connor is interested in music and computer science.

Erin Marlowe

Erin received her BS degree in physics with a minor in mathematics from Indiana University. As an undergraduate, she worked extensively on a project to understand the thermodynamic behavior of nanoconfined gasses. During this project, she used x-ray diffractometry and adsorption isotherms to characterize samples, wrote data collection and analysis programs using Labview and Python, and conducted measurements of the heat capacity of nanoconfined argon. In addition to her research, Erin volunteered at local outreach events to teach children about physics. Her current interests include hard condensed matter. Outside of physics, Erin enjoys rock climbing, reading, and playing with her dog.

Shambavi Natarajan

Shambavi, from India, received her BA degree in Physics and Mathematics from Westminster College where she did research in the field of optics. Her study involved experimentally obtaining the refractive index and the absorption index of various solutions using the ATR infrared spectroscopy, and studying the Kramers-Kronig relations between them. After her undergrad, she went on to receive her MA degree in Mathematics from University of Missouri, Columbia. Her master’s project, in the field of statistical mechanics, involved understanding Gibbs distribution and the Ising model for magnets. Outside of physics, she loves painting and playing sitar, a musical instrument.

Students at various stages of the program

Daniel O’Brien, Class of 2017

Dan O'Brien Standing with Open Arms  Among Orange and Green Leaves and Trees

The GU Physics department was a perfect fit for me; its interdisciplinary nature affords access to specialists in a range of fields. This expertise, when paired with state-of-the-art experimental facilities like GNuLab and ISM, means I have the ability to conduct advanced technological research. Lastly, our geographical placement in DC both brings in speakers and collaborators from government labs and offers access to plenty of “nature” just a few miles outside of town.

Luogen (Logan) Xu, Class of 2018

The physics graduate students here at Georgetown are a close-knit community. I get to discuss research ideas with fellow graduate students with great passion and hang out with them outside of work. During stressful times, they were great companies to have intellectually engaging and calming conversations with. The faculty here is welcoming and caring. They do fascinating research and they really love physics. As it turns out, coming here has been one of the best choices I made in my life!

Davonne Henry, Class of 2018

During my undergraduate work, I was not able to explore specialized Physics topics and engage in research as freely as I have been able to do at Georgetown. I have gotten to engage with experimental and theoretical collaborators and I have the opportunity to take advantage of diverse areas of expertise among the faculty and students. Outside of research, I have enjoyed the opportunity to have serious conversations within the department about our responsibility to build a diverse and inclusive STEM community.

Past Students

Andrew Hankins, Process Integration Engineer, Intel

Kyle DiCamillo, Research Scientist, SPAWAR Systems Center Pacific

Jeffrey Cohn, Post-doc, IBM Almaden Research Center

Johnathan Wensman, Cambridge Medical Technologies, Applied Scientist/Project Manager

Sona Najafi, Post-doc, Virginia Tech University, Sophia Economou and Edwin Barne’s Lab

Xiaowan Zhang, Researcher, Blue Labs, Inc.

Oliver Albertini, Software Developer, Pivotal Labs

Pasha Tabatabai, Post-Doctoral Fellow In The Laboratory Of Living Matter At Yale University

Tingting Li, IPRO, PLLC

Chen Zhao, Amphastar Pharmaceuticals

Tabitha Yewer, Associate at Anderson Tax

Rich Arevalo, Academic Advisor at Empire Edge

Natalia Borjemscaia, Engineer at IBM

Tony Boyd, Research Fellow at the Naval Research Laboratory

Jesus Cruz-Rojas, Engineer at Netscout

Isha Dube,  Engineer at Intel Corporation

Yizhi Ge, Manager at Lockheed Martin

Simon Hale, Engineer at IBM

Michael Helle, Researcher at Naval Research Laboratory

Kai He, Scientist at NOAA

Pramukta Kumar, Founder/CTO of

Yian Liu, Engineer at Globalfoundries

Armstrong Mbi, Professor at the American University

Russel Ross, Lead Technologist at Booz-Allen Hamilton

Julie Schoening, Analyst at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission

Wen Shen, Financial Engineer at Fannie Mae

Misha Smirnov, Post-Doctoral Fellow AT THE Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience

Baoming Tang, Data Scientist at Twitter

Becky Van Pelt, Scientist at Areté Industries

Yanfei Yang, Research Associate at NIST

Joseph York, Manager at AIP