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Tara Venkatadri Selected As Churchill Scholar

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MIT senior Tara Venkatadri has been selected as a 2022 Churchill Scholar and will embark on a year of graduate studies in the U.K. starting next fall. 

The Churchill Scholarship is a highly competitive fellowship that annually offers 16 American students the opportunity to pursue a funded graduate degree in science, mathematics or engineering at Churchill College within Cambridge University. The scholarship, which was established in 1963, honors former British Prime Minister Winston Churchill’s vision of U.S.-U.K. scientific exchange. Since 2017, two additional Kanders Churchill Scholarships have been awarded each year for studies in science policy.

Tara Venkatadri

Tara Venkatadri, from Ardsley, New York, is majoring in aerospace engineering and minoring in Earth, atmospheric, and planetary sciences. At Cambridge University, she will pursue an MPhil in engineering and then plans to enter a PhD program in aerospace engineering with a focus in materials and structures. She hopes to pursue a research career developing novel aerospace structures that allow humanity to venture deeper into the solar system than ever before.

Venkatadri, who was a 2021 Barry Goldwater Scholar, has conducted research with Professor Richard Linares in the MIT Space Systems Lab, and is currently working with Professor Tal Cohen in her Nonlinear Solid Mechanics lab. In an internship with the NASA Goddard Flight Center, she identified potential lunar landing sites for future lunar missions, and later presented her work at the 50th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference. At SES Satellites, she developed programs to forecast power consumption for medium Earth orbit spacecraft. Last summer, Venkatadri worked at Boeing as a structural engineering intern modeling the forces on fittings that connect aircraft components.

Since her sophomore year, Venkatadri has mentored first-year students as an associate advisor, and has been a teaching assistant for the Experimental Study Group first-year learning community. Throughout college, she has been a violinist with the MIT Symphony Orchestra, and involved with the student group Singing for Service, which aims to connect with isolated communities through music. Venkatadri is a member of the Tau Beta Pi Engineering Honor Society.

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