Carnegie Mellon University
January 30, 2015

Shirley Ho Wins Carnegie Science Award

Shirley HoPITTSBURGH— The Carnegie Science Center has announced that Shirley Ho, assistant professor of physics, has been awarded a Carnegie Science Award in the Emerging Female Scientist Category. She will receive the award at a banquet on May 8.

Ho was recognized for her outstanding achievements in the field of cosmology, where she is considered to be among the premier researchers in astrophysics for both her own research and her contributions to international collaborations. Ho has devised a method for controlling systematic errors in data from large astronomical surveys, which has led to some of the most accurate measurements of the scale of the universe. She also conducts research aimed at understanding how dark energy accelerates the expansion of the universe.

A member of CMU’s McWilliams Center for Cosmology, Ho has taken a number of leadership roles in large international research collaborations, serving as co-chair of the Clustering Working Group for the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument, co-leader of the Large Scale Structure Working Group for the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope’s Dark Energy Science Collaboration, and co-chair of the Lyman Alpha Forest Working Group for the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. She is also a member of the NASA team of U.S. scientists participating in the science program for Euclid, a European satellite experiment.

In addition to Ho, four other Carnegie Mellon faculty and one post-doctoral fellow received Carnegie Science Awards this year. David Brumley, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering and technical director of CyLab won the University/Post-Secondary Educator Award; Danielle Chirdon, a Department of Energy Graduate Fellow in the department of chemistry, won the University/Post-Secondary Student Award; and Jeanne VanBriesen, the Duquesne Light Company Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, won the Environmental Award. Two professors received awards through their spin-off companies: Luis von Ahn, associate professor of computer science, won the Information Technology Award for his work with Duolingo; and Jesse Schell, Distinguished Professor of the Practice of Entertainment Technology at the Entertainment Technology Center, won the Entrepreneur Award for his work Schell Games.

The Carnegie Science Awards recognize and promote outstanding science and technology achievements in western Pennsylvania. Since 1997, they have honored the accomplishments of more than 400 individuals and organizations whose contributions in the fields of science, technology and education have impacted our region’s industrial, academic and environmental vitality.