Alexandra Polasko started at UCLA in Fall 2015 as a Ph.D student in Environmental Engineering under faculty advisor Dr. Shaily Mahendra. Recently Alexandra won the New England Biolabs Passion in Science 2016 award for the Environmental Stewardship category.  The Passion in Science Award recognizes those within the scientific community working to solve many of today’s challenges. It is New England Biolabs’ chance to recognize the accomplishments of the “unsung heroes” of the laboratory, who are dedicated to their cause. They select 15 winners among the applicants in categories that include: scientific mentorship and advocacy, humanitarian duty, environmental stewardship, arts & creativity. Alexandra will be recognized at a celebration on the New England Biolabs campus in Ipswich, MA in November.

In addition, Alexandra has recently received the Women in Leadership Fellowship from Brown and Caldwell, a solely environmental consulting firm. The stipend supports female students that are interested in pursuing a career in the environmental profession. The fellowship is open to both undergraduate and graduate students and is meant to potentially integrate highly achieving students into their company and/or future projects. Alexandra is also the recipient of the Cota Robles Fellowship, Len Assante Scholarship, Malcom R. Stacey Memorial Scholarship, and the National Science Foundation honorable mention.