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2 Caltech Grad Students Named Schmidt Science Fellows

Published on Thursday, June 3, 2021 | 2:52 pm
2021 Schmidt Science Fellows Courtesy:

Two graduate students from Caltech are among 28 young scientists around the world named Schmidt Science Fellows, the organization announced Thursday.

As part of the fellowship’s fourth cohort, Shashank Gandhi and Manuel Razo-Mejia will join 56 others across the globe who are already part of the program, which is administered by Schmidt Futures, in partnership with the Rhodes Trust, Schmidt Science Fellows said in a written statement.

The fellowship seeks out “early-career scientists committed to harnessing interdisciplinary science to make a positive difference in the world,” according to the statement. It was formed in 2017.

“The 2021 Fellows will each undertake an interdisciplinary pivot in their research, focusing on areas such as preventing future pandemics, creating sustainable energy systems, improving water and food security, developing more personalized and equitable healthcare and understanding and mitigating the climate crisis,” the statement said.

Schmidt Futures said the company was committed to continuing the program for at least another five years. It’s part of a $1 billion philanthropic campaign made by Schmidt Futures co-founders Eric and Wendy Schmidt.

“At Schmidt Futures, we believe the key to a better future is investing in talented people, connecting them in a network, and giving them the resources to do more together than they could ever do alone, according to Eric Schmidt, who is also a former Google CEO.

“Schmidt Science Fellows was our first initiative, and the work of the Fellows speaks for itself — especially as we saw so many of our current Fellows pivot their research to tackle the coronavirus pandemic,” he added. “I’m eager to witness how these Fellows continue to push the conventional boundaries of science in the years ahead.”

The program seeks to solve some of the world’s toughest challenges by “ bringing together brilliant people across disciplines,” said Wendy Schmidt, who also serves as president of The Schmidt Family Foundation.

“We could not be prouder of the Fellows, who have already improved cancer diagnostics, advanced the way new drug therapies are delivered, and brought life-saving, Covid-fighting technologies to people around the globe,” she said. “We can’t wait to see what the 2021 cohort will accomplish.”

More information on the Schmidt Science Fellows can be found online at

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