The recipients of the second ATLAS PhD Grant were announced last week. The three young ATLAS physicists – Danijela Bogavac, Silvia Fracchia, and Declan Millar – were given certificates at a small ceremony at CERN, Geneva.
"To be here at CERN now, so close to the LHC's restart and to be able to work with experts while history is in the making is a huge opportunity," says Bogavac from University of Belgrade, Serbia. Bogavac first visited CERN in September 2014 to work on the muon-in-jet trigger and has recently joined a search for supersymmetry.
Fracchia and Millar had also previously been at CERN. "There is something very compelling and inspiring about being here, the spirit of the international collaboration, working to find what is not standard and discussing possibilities,"says Millar from University of Southampton and Queen Mary University of London. Millar is working on a joint phenomenology project, traversing theory and experiment.
Fracchia from IFAE Barcelona also works on Supersymmetry searches. "To be here for the LHC's restart is incredibly exciting. We hope to find a hint for new physics. This grant allows us to be a part of the excitement, to stay at CERN and learn from scientists who participated in the first start-up of the LHC," she says.
The ATLAS PhD Grant covers two years of PhD thesis funding for about eight talented and motivated young researchers, with some emphasis on choosing those with limited financial resources. The students will spend one year at CERN and another back at their home institute. The initiative is also open to those interested in contributing to the fund and making it possible to sustain the programme.
Former ATLAS spokespersons Peter Jenni and Fabiola Gianotti started the fund with the Fundamental Physics Prize award money they received in 2013. Both have used the entirety of their prizes for educational and humanitarian programmes. Also, for the first time, Winton Capital Charitable Foundation has lent support to the ATLAS PhD Grant scheme in the framework of CERN & Society.
Abha Eli Phoboo