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Slezak Memorial Fellowship Recipient Recognized for Outstanding Work

Yuehua Yu

Yuehua "Tony" Yu

Dr. Jane Ann Slezak has spent a career sharing her love of chemistry. She earned her Ph.D. at Rensselaer and currently teaches as a professor of chemistry at a nearby community college. Jane decided a few years ago to establish a permanent fellowship in memory of her parents. Not surprisingly, this fellowship supports students who pursue graduate degrees in chemistry.

The Slezak Fellowship most recently supported a brilliant young graduate student at Rensselaer named Yuehua "Tony" Yu. Tony earned his Ph.D. in May. Shortly before graduating, Tony was selected to receive the prestigious Lemelson- Rensselaer Student Prize for demonstrating remarkable inventiveness in developing a new method for harnessing the enormous potential of nanoparticles. Tony's discoveries in the lab could lead to a new generation of medical devices, drug delivery technologies and other applications.

Tony joined Rensselaer as a doctoral student in 2004, after earning his bachelor's degree in chemistry and master's degree in polymer science in China. In early 2005 he joined the research group of Rensselaer professor Linda McGown, who heads the department of chemistry and chemical biology. "Tony is one of the most brilliant and most creative students with whom I've ever worked. The elegance and simplicity of his inventions belie their novelty and ingenuity," says Linda, who was also Tony's academic advisor. "It's been a privilege to work with such a gifted scientist."

Tony continues to work as a postdoctoral researcher at Rensselaer. An avid player and coach in intramural soccer and basketball at Rensselaer, Tony and his wife, Yuexi Wang, have a daughter, Grace, who is nearly 1 year old.

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