Phi Beta Kappa Honors 42 Los Alamos High School Students At Banquet May 20

Dr. Jennifer Hollingsworth. Courtesy photo

Phi Beta Kappa

 On Sunday evening, May 20, the Los Alamos Phi Beta Kappa Association will hold its 62nd annual banquet to honor the top graduates of Los Alamos High School.

Phi Beta Kappa is the oldest undergraduate honor society in the United States and has about 250 members in Los Alamos County (2% of the county’s adult population).

The banquet for the honor graduates, Phi Beta Kappa Members and their guests starts at 5:30 p.m. at Fuller Lodge in Los Alamos and is catered by Secret City Kitchen.

The Class of 2018 students to be honored are: Nicole Aldaz, Sydne Ashford, Ethan Aulwes, Eben Bold, Aysu Nora Caglar, Elisa Cirigliano, Sean Collins, Alexandra Cunningham, Kyle Cvinar, Rachel Frankle, David Gao, Caleb Hatler, Alisha Heikoop, Zoe Hemez, Radhika Iyer, Matilde Jacobson, Sophia Jeffery, Mackenzie Kieltyka, Junseo Kim, Sophia Li, Phillip Martin, Prescott Moore, Martin Naud, Beatrice Nisoli, Jennifer Paige, Kevin Parkinson, Kyler Parkinson, Donald Poston, Neelima Prasad, Benjamin Rees, Andreas Runde, Sarah Russell, Wyatt Saeger, Tristan Semelsberger, Sara Shiina, Sarah Shipley, Olivia Taylor, Jacob Torrez, Antonio Trujillo, Priyanka Velappan, Miriam Wallstrom and Data Wenberg. 

At the banquet, the Los Alamos Phi Beta Kappa Association will award a $1,000 scholarship to a student who has demonstrated a commitment to the humanities and sciences, and who plans to pursue that interest in college. The annual Jay Woodward Memorial book award, commemorating an outstanding LAHS student body president and scholar, also will be presented at the banquet. This award was initiated in 1957 by Jay’s parents, John and Miriam, both founding members of the local Phi Beta Kappa Association.

Invited speakers from recent banquets have come from Los Alamos National Laboratory, New Mexico Tech and the Santa Fe Institute. Their choices of subject reveal a compelling cross-section and intersection of the sciences and the liberal arts, including creative uses of applied sciences, showing how scientists use their skills to interpret and preserve the world we live in, describing how human societies evolve, and speculating what those changes mean for the futures of both.

This year’s speaker, Dr. Jennifer Hollingsworth, is a Los Alamos National Laboratory Fellow and a staff scientist at the Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies (CINT). Dr. Hollingsworth’s talk is titled The Power of Very Small Things.  Dr. Hollingsworth holds a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Grinnell College (Phi Beta Kappa) and a PhD in inorganic chemistry from Washington University in St. Louis. She has received accolades for her discovery of non-blinking “giant” quantum dots (gQDs) – ultrastable nanoscale emitters of light. Her research interests include understanding the connections between chemical synthesis methods, nanostructure and optoelectronic properties to develop new nanomaterials. Her patented gQD design has been extended for applications from efficient solid-state lighting to developing agents that target, image and kill cancer cells.

Members of Phi Beta Kappa who have not received an invitation to the banquet are encouraged to contact the organizers to attend or to sponsor a student’s attendance. The banquet cost is $35 per person. Contact Linda Hull by phone at 505.662.7950 or email, or Joyce Guzik by email at by Friday, May 11, to reserve a place.  Phi Beta Kappa members may also download the invitation and RSVP form at