Berkeley Lab

Arun Persaud Recognized as One of Lab’s Outstanding Mentors

Arun Persaud in lab

Looking toward the future of the scientific workforce. (Photo courtesy Arun Persaud)

Arun Persaud, a staff scientist in ATAP’s Fusion Science & Ion Beam Technology (FS&IBT) Program, has been recognized with the Outstanding Mentor Award. The honor, bestowed by the Lab’s Workforce Development & Education Office, recognizes those going above and beyond in 2019 and 2020 to teach technical and professional skills to Berkeley Lab’s undergraduate interns.

In an article on the WD&E website, Persaud noted, “The WD&E program has been a great resource for our group to be able to find highly motivated students.”

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His interns have praised him for being a good listener, taking the time to learn about their technical backgrounds, and helping them build a firm foundation in practical skills. One of his mentees cited his “extraordinary commitment to the success of his interns.” Many come away from the internship experience with publication credits to their name as well — most recently Tanay Tak, who participated in the development of a system for measuring and imaging carbon in soil.

Persaud has had only one intern, who worked remotely, during the Lab’s time of COVID precautions, but said, “We are looking forward to have more students join us when the pandemic is over and it is easier to host them onsite.”

Arun Persaud with recent Summer Undergraduate Laboratory Internship students Tanay Tak (l.) and Lindsey Gordon (Credit: Thor Swift/Berkeley Lab)

Arun Persaud with recent Summer Undergraduate Laboratory Internship students: Left: Tanay Tak. Right: Lindsey Gordon, who he co-mentored.. (Credit: Thor Swift/Berkeley Lab)

“Arun has exemplary talent and enthusiasm for fostering the careers of future scientists.” said ATAP Director Cameron Geddes. “We appreciate his work in mentoring the next generation and in enabling their contributions to science, which are important parts of our mission.”

Success indicator

These are some of the students Arun has mentored in recent years, making further progress toward bright careers in science and technology. (He co-mentored many of them with FS&IBT Program colleagues Peter Seidl, an active retiree, and staff scientist Qing Ji.) Most of these students came to us through the DOE Office of Science Summer Undergraduate Laboratory Internship (SULI) Program. Brian Wynne, William Larsen, and Grant Giesbrecht are recent SULI students who went on to serve as research assistants in the FS&IBT Program.

•  Brian Wynne (Summer 2020, virtually): Incoming PhD student, Princeton University.
•  Danielle Curtis (Spring 2020): Law student, University of Oregon, and Law Clerk, Cascadia Wildlands.
•  Tanay Tak (fall 2019): Entering a PhD program in materials at the University of California-Santa Barbara.
•  Lindsey Gordon (fall 2019; co-mentor): Entering a PhD program in astrophysics at the University of Minnesota.
•  Madeline (Wells) Garske (2019; co-mentor): Accelerator Systems Operator, SLAC.
•  Casey Christian (2019), Post-baccalaureate Research Fellow, Physics Division, Berkeley Lab.
•  Madeline (Wells) Garske (2019): Accelerator Systems Operator, SLAC.
•  Grant Giesbrecht (2019; co-mentor): Accelerator Systems Operator, SLAC.
•  William Larsen (2019): Graduate student, Rice University.
•  Grace Woods (2018): PhD candidate, applied physics, Stanford University.
•  Will Mixter (2018), Product Reliability Engineer, Hunter Industries.
•  Zachary Croft (2018): Graduate student, applied physics, University of Michigan.
•  David Raftrey (2017): PhD student, physics, UC-Santa Cruz and Berkeley Lab.
•  Evan Dowling (2017): Graduate student, physics, University of Maryland.
•  Maya Silverman (2016): PhD student, physics and astronomy, UC-Irvine.
•  Franziska Treffert (2016): PhD candidate, TU-Darmstadt, and Visiting Research Scientist, SLAC.