UChicago physicist Zoe Yan named 2023 laureate of the Blavatnik Regional Awards for Young Scientists

August 9, 2023

Announcing the honorees of the 2023 Blavatnik Regional Awards, U.S. Regional

The Blavatnik Family Foundation and the New York Academy of Sciences today announced the three Laureates of the 2023 Blavatnik Regional Awards for Young Scientists, including Assistant Professor of Physics Zoe Yan for Physical Sciences & Engineering. 

Nominated by Princeton University, Yan was recognized for developing the first quantum gas microscope on single, ultracold molecules and applying this technique to explore important phenomena relevant to high-temperature superconductors and other quantum materials. Her work opened a new venue to study complex quantum phenomena previously inaccessible by other instruments and holds great potential in future quantum technologies.

A New York Academy of Sciences video featuring Zoe Yan Video Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I3Jqo5Gywlo

“I'm extremely honored to receive this award,” says Yan, who recently joined the faculty at the University of Chicago. “I appreciate that the Blavatnik Family Foundation recognizes early career scientists, and this honor is a significant boost for me as I build an independent research group at UChicago."

The Blavatnik Regional Awards for Young Scientists honor outstanding postdoctoral scientists from academic research institutions across New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut in three disciplinary categories: Chemistry, Physical Sciences & Engineering, and Life Sciences.

The awards jury, consisting of distinguished scientists and engineers from across the New York Tri-State region, selected one Laureate in each of the three categories who will receive a $30,000 unrestricted prize and two Finalists in each category who will be awarded $10,000 each. In the 2023 competition, there were 121 outstanding nominations from 28 academic institutions in the New York metropolitan region (Tri-State Area).

The 2023 Blavatnik Regional Awards Laureates and Finalists will be honored during National Postdoctoral Appreciation Week, which recognizes the significant contributions that postdoctoral scholars make to U.S. research and discovery. The 2023 Ceremony of the Blavatnik Awards for Young Scientists will take place at the American Museum of Natural History in New York on September 19, 2023.

“Congratulations to this year’s Regional Awards Laureates and Finalists. We look forward to their future significant discoveries,” said Len Blavatnik, Founder and Chairman of Access Industries, head of the Blavatnik Family Foundation.

Nicholas B. Dirks, the New York Academy of Sciences’ President and CEO, said, “Congratulations to the 2023 Blavatnik Regional Awards Laureates and Finalists. This year’s Regional honorees are driving cutting-edge research, making important contributions to the area’s current and future scientific excellence. Many are publishing research at rapid speed, taking creative risks in their research, while actively working to create a more diverse STEM workforce. These are the young scientific superstars we should be watching.”

Read the full press release for more information on the Blavatnik National Awards for Young Scientists, the Blavatnik Family Foundation, and the New York Academy of Sciences. 

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