P.D. Soros Fellowship for New Americans


Yuno Iwasaki, 2024

PhD, University of California, Berkeley

Yuno Iwasaki is an immigrant from Japan.

Fellowship awarded to support work towards a PhD in Physics at University of California, Berkeley

Born to a Japanese father and a Romanian mother, Yuno Iwasaki grew up in a small town in central Japan. Yuno came to the United States as a high school sophomore to attend Groton School, a boarding school in Massachusetts. As one of five Inclusion Scholars in her cohort, she received a full scholarship to attend. This enabled her to pursue educational opportunities beyond those offered in the traditional Japanese school system.

As an undergraduate at Princeton University, Yuno had the opportunity to explore a variety of physics subfields through research. Her research in computational geophysics with Professor Ching-Yao Lai resulted in a first author journal publication. The summer before her senior year, Yuno worked with Professor Daniel Marlow and Doctor Andi Tan on the design and assembly of a small-scale detector for observing cosmic microwave background radiation from the roof of the physics building. This experience sparked her interest in developing experimental techniques for testing theoretical predictions of fundamental physics. For her senior thesis advised by Professor Christopher Tully, Yuno developed the first conceptual design for a component of PTOLEMY, an experimental collaboration aiming to detect relic neutrinos. She was honored by the Kusaka Memorial Prize in Physics for outstanding thesis work and led a journal paper based on this research.

Yuno will pursue a PhD at UC Berkeley, where she is interested in using Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics (AMO) techniques as an experimental platform for testing fundamental physics.

  • AB Physics | Princeton University 2023
  • PhD Physics | University of California, Berkeley
  • Kusaka Memorial Prize in Physics
  • Allen G. Shenstone Prize for Independent Research
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