Department of Biology
News Story

Nicole Wagner selected for the DOD National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship!

Nicole Wagner was recently selected for the DOD National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship. According to their website, “The DoD NDSEG Fellowship Program, established in 1989 by direction of Congress and sponsored by the Army, Navy, and Air Force, serves as a means of increasing the number of United States citizens trained in science and engineering disciplines of military importance.” The program recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in science and engineering disciplines who are pursuing research-based master’s and doctoral degrees at accredited United States institutions.

“I am absolutely thrilled, and extremely proud! I owe a huge THANK YOU to so many folks in the department because I wouldn’t even have applied if it weren’t for all the encouragement I received! The fellowship is going to let me continue my very exciting astrobiology research, focused on finding the limits of life on Earth and learning about the habitability of ocean worlds by using the Antarctic Lake Untersee as an analog system for Enceladus, an icy moon of Saturn.” stated Wagner.

A PhD candidate, Wagner completed her undergraduate studies degree in physics with a focus on astronomy from Stanford and received a second bachelor’s degree in biology from Portland State University. She works with Professor Sarah Johnson in the study of life in extreme environments used as ocean world analogs in the Johnson Biosignatures Laboratory. Nicole’s current research is focused on finding the limits of terrestrial life by studying extremophiles found in Lake Untersee in Eastern Antarctica. Congratulations to Nicole Wagner for her prestigious award.

The department of Biology wishes you luck on your research.