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Rising Black Scientists Awards

Rising Black Scientists Awards 1
Rising Black Scientists Awards 2
Rising Black Scientists Awards 3
Rising Black Scientists Awards 4

There is a representation problem within the US scientific community. Acknowledging the problem is an important first step, but it is important to us to take immediate action to diversify the voices at the table—and in the lab—especially after the murder of George Floyd in 2020.

The annual Rising Black Scientists Awards were established by CST and Cell Press to provide a cash prize for promising African American scientists in the US. In 2022, through support from the Elsevier Foundation, the awards were expanded to include two additional recipients for a total of four winners. Talented students working in the disciplines of life, physical, Earth, environmental, or data sciences are eligible.

Four undergraduate students and four graduate students/postdoctoral scholars are recognized. Each receive a $10,000 award and $500 in travel funds from CST and the Elsevier Foundation, as well as complementary registration for an Elsevier conference of their choice that occurs within two years of the award announcement. The winning essays will be published by Cell Press and winners will have the option to choose publication in Cell, or in one of a selection of Cell Press journals.

The third annual awards were also expanded to recognize four honorable mentions; two undergraduate students and two graduate students/postdoctoral scholars. Each receive $500 from CST and the Elsevier Foundation. Essays winning an honorable mention will be published in the journal iScience.

First and second annual Rising Black Scientists Awards recipients (shown above):

  • First annual Graduate/Postdoctoral winner: Chrystal Starbird, PhD of Yale University
  • First annual Undergraduate winner: Fola Olusanya of Howard University
  • Second annual Graduate/Postdoctoral winner: Elle Lett, PhD of University of Pennsylvania
  • Second annual Undergraduate winner: Charleese Williams of Georgia State

Third annual Rising Black Scientists Awards recipients (shown below):

  • Graduate/Postdoctoral winner: Christine Wilkinson, PhD of UC Berkeley
  • Graduate/Postdoctoral winner: Elijah Malik Persad-Paisley of Brown University Alpert Medical School
  • Undergraduate winner: Admirabilis Kalolella of Connecticut College
  • Undergraduate winner: Camryn Carter of Richmond College

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