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Hopkins BME senior awarded Astronaut Scholarship for second year in a row

June 21, 2019

Vinay Ayyappan awarded Astronaut Scholarship.

For the second year in a row, Vinay Ayyappan, a rising senior in biomedical engineering at Johns Hopkins University, has been awarded an Astronaut Scholarship, which recognizes talented students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. He is among 52 students from 38 universities to be awarded the scholarship this year.

Established in 1984, the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation supports students who pursue scientific education to keep America a leader in technology. The scholarship was founded by a group of astronauts—Scott Carpenter, Gordon Cooper, John Glenn, Walter Schirra, Alan Shepard, and Deke Slayton—who were test pilots when NASA recruited them for space missions in 1959.

Recipients of the award are given a $10,000 scholarship, a paid trip to the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation’s Innovators Weekend in the fall, and the opportunity to network with fellow scholar alumni and with the founding astronauts themselves.

“It’s incredibly humbling,” Ayyappan said. “The competition is so fierce, that to be selected again is an honor.”

During his time at Hopkins, Ayyappan has worked on the molecular imaging of cancer and helped develop biomedical devices to improve breast biopsy procedures in low-resource settings.

Ayyappan said he is currently most interested in imaging and systems biology, and is looking to pursue his MD and PhD following graduation.

Along with Ayyappan, Kathy Le, a rising senior biophysics major at Johns Hopkins, was also named an Astronaut Scholar. Read the full story on the Hub.