Massachusetts Institute of Technology Graduate Wins Chasman Scholarship

Connie Yee to pursue studies in operations research at Columbia University

Loralie Smart, Connie Lee, and Vinita Ghosh enlarge

Brookhaven Women in Science board members Loralie Smart (left) and Vinita Ghosh present the Renate W. Chasman Scholarship to Connie Lee.

UPTON, NY — Connie Yee, who graduated from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) with a B.S. in mechanical engineering, has won the 2009 Renate W. Chasman Scholarship for Women. Brookhaven Women in Science, a not-for-profit organization at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory, offers the scholarship to qualified candidates annually to encourage women to pursue careers in science, engineering or mathematics. Yee plans to purse studies in operations research at Columbia University this fall.

Named after the late Renate Chasman, a renowned physicist who worked at Brookhaven, the $2,000 scholarship is awarded each year to a re-entry woman – one whose college education was interrupted, but who has returned to pursue a degree on a half time or greater basis.

“My father used to work on the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider at Brookhaven Lab,” Yee said. “During the Lab’s annual Summer Sunday tours, my brother and I were fascinated by the immense facilities, especially the gigantic accelerators and groundbreaking research. These weekend visits were instrumental in inspiring my high school and college science studies, particularly in physics. This scholarship will be my everlasting connection to Brookhaven Lab, to renowned women scientists and to my continued scientific studies.”

After earning her B.S. from M.I.T. in June 2008, Yee landed a job as a systems analyst at FX Alliance, a provider of automated trading solutions for currency exchange. “To my dismay, financial hardship stalled my goals of furthering my education beyond my undergraduate degree for the last year,” Yee said. “Real-world experience has broadened my horizons and helped map out my career path, but I have an intense yearning to resume my studies. The Chasman Scholarship will help me to continue my studies to earn a master’s degree from Columbia University.”

Yee hopes to pursue a career in operations research, also known as management science – a field that uses advanced analytical techniques to make decisions and solve problems. Yee wants to develop mathematical and statistical models for engineering systems. In addition, she would like to use her expertise to maximize productivity and optimize efficiency on both the management and technical levels for future employers.

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