You are here

TRIUMF welcomes annual recipients of Richard E. Azuma Fellowship

19 May 2023


TRIUMF would like to welcome Ashley Ferreira and Claire Hamilton, this year’s recipients of the Richard E. Azuma Undergraduate Summer Fellowship.

Ashley Ferreira is a fourth-year student at the University of Waterloo who will be returning for another year afterwards to work on an undergraduate final year research project and complete some additional computer science courses. She wants to pursue graduate studies at the intersection of computer science, physics and astronomy. 

Ashley Ferreira Image

This summer, Ferreira will be working with Dr. Makoto Fujiwara and the ALPHA/HAICU team to explore ways to use machine learning for antimatter research. As a part of the fellowship, she will be spending half her summer at CERN doing shift work on the ALPHA experiment. 

This work aligns closely with Ferreira’s goals for the future: “I hope to work in scientific computing. Specifically, I’d be really interested in supporting research projects that attempt to answer fundamental questions about our universe using data science techniques like machine learning”. 

When she’s not at TRIUMF, Ashley stays active climbing, snowboarding or sailing!

Claire Hamilton

Claire Hamilton is a third-year student of Engineering Physics with a concentration in Computing at Queen’s University. She is a member of the electrical subsystem on Queen’s Baja SAE team and a project manager for a startup consulting group at Queen’s. 

At TRIUMF, Hamilton will be joining Dr. Chloé Malbrunot with the PHORWARD research group working on the design and construction of liquid xenon detectors. She looks forward to returning to TRIUMF to improve her technical and problem-solving skills in order to continue to improve in her final year of her degree.  

Hamilton said she is eager to return because her last term at TRIUMF was a great learning opportunity which helped her determine what her interests are: “I was very keen on returning to TRIUMF because I found that I was not only challenged by those I worked with but was also able to take initiative in my own learning and involve myself in the opportunities TRIUMF provides its students.”

Outside the lab, you can catch Claire walking her dog in the forest or reading books by the beach! 

About the Azuma Fellowship

The Richard E. Azuma scholarship commemorates renowned TRIUMF and University of Toronto physicist Dr. Dick Azuma, who played an integral role in established the field of experimental nuclear astrophysics in Canada. Dick was committed to educating future physicists and a fierce defender against prejudice and discrimination. For many, he was a valued mentor and inspiration. In his career, he contributed to many topics and initiatives, including the well-known “Red Giant” experiment, which laid the foundation for TRIUMF’s ISAC and ARIEL facilities and rare-isotope science program. This fellowship seeks to honour his legacy and support talented Canadian undergraduate students with diverse backgrounds who are considering a career in research fields associated with TRIUMF science. 

This is the second year of this fellowship, read more about the launch here.

The recipients are both very grateful for the opportunity provided by this fellowship. Claire Hamilton reflects on the meaning of this scholarship:

Dr. Azuma’s story resonated deeply with me as a gender minority, and as someone whose family has experienced similar prejudice as Asian-Canadians. The fellowship serves as an important reminder that although I experience obstacles in my career because of my identity, it is significantly less challenging because of individuals like Dr. Azuma who helped pave the way for minority physicists and engineers. To me, the fellowship honours those who defended against prejudice to ensure that minorities are respected for their identities and accomplishments. Accepting the Azuma Fellowship is a commitment to take special consideration to highlight the underrepresented voices of today and to take time to remember the work of those like Dr. Azuma that helped change and form today’s landscape.

We look forward to having these talented students at TRIUMF this summer. Congratulations and welcome Ashley and Claire!