Event Details

Date: Friday, April 5, 2024
Time: 5:30 p.m. (EST) 
Location: John Lewis Student Center - Atlantic Theater (3rd floor) | 351 Ferst Dr. NW, Atlanta, GA 30332
Watch online: https://gatech.zoom.us/j/98696536715

Admission is free. Open to the Georgia Tech community. Family, friends, and guests are welcome to attend. Tickets not required. 


  • Top Prize PhD Winner: $2,000 research travel grant 
  • PhD Runner-up: $1,500 research travel grant
  • PhD Third Place: $1,000 research travel grant
  • Master’s Winner: $1,000 research travel grant

Additional Awards

People's Choice Winner: $500 research travel grant. The audience and online viewers will vote for this coveted prize!

2024 Finalists

NameDegree LevelProgram
Karina BhattacharyaMIDIndustrial Design
Vinodhini ComandurPhDAerospace Engineering
Mo JarinPhDEnvironmental Engineering
Anamik JhunjhunwalaPhDBiomedical Engineering
Valeria JuarezPhDBiomedical Engineering
Alexandra PattersonPhDBioengineering
Jeffrey PattisonPhDAerospace Engineering
Kantwon RogersPhDComputer Science
Mallika SenthilMSBiomedical Engineering
Wenting ShiPhDChemistry and Biochemistry
Shreyas SrivathsanPhDAerospace Engineering
Raghav TandonPhDMachine Learning

2024 Judges

Angela Ayers

Angela Ayers

Angela Ayers is the Assistant Vice President of Research Communications at the Georgia Institute of Technology, a leading research university committed to developing leaders who advance technology and improve the human condition. In fiscal year 2023, Georgia Tech had a $4.5 billion economic impact on the state of Georgia and received $1.45 billion in research awards.

Ayers has more than 25 years of communications and marketing experience having worked at IBM, GE Power Systems, and others, including spending the last 18 years at Georgia Tech. She led communications for Georgia Tech’s bioengineering and biosciences interdisciplinary research institute (IRI) for five years, and then managed the team leading communications for all 10 of Georgia Tech’s IRIs for several years before becoming the AVP of Research Communications in January 2023.

She received her master’s degree in marketing from Georgia State University and bachelor’s degree in advertising from the University of Florida.

Michelle Offik

Michelle Offik

Michelle is currently a Project Specialist with the Creative Services Sports Unit Agency, an internal agency partner of Turner Sports at Warner Bros. Discovery in Atlanta. With over a decade of experience in digital and strategic media communications, Michelle enjoys bringing unique voices to the fore and collaborating with those who seek to enact real, meaningful change.

Michelle has worked in and with a variety of industries, including sports media, music and entertainment, lifestyle, technology, food and hospitality, healthcare, financial services, and foreign affairs. Through a strategic communications lens, Michelle has developed a well-rounded and grounded approach when helping people connect with those they most want to reach. She previously worked in Washington, DC on a foreign diplomacy campaign after obtaining her master’s in political science at Humboldt University of Berlin in Berlin, Germany through a partnership with UNC-Chapel Hill. She received the Fulbright Research Scholarship to Germany in 2015 to complete her thesis field work abroad.

Michelle is a Georgia native who loves attending an Atlanta Braves game with her fiance as often as their two cats allow them to leave the house.

Ian Webb

Ian Webb

Ian Webb is a strategic communicator and collaborative higher education leader who currently serves as the Director of Institute Strategic Priority Communications at the Georgia Institute of Technology. In his role, Webb acts as the primary liaison and stakeholder for communicating the Institute's core values and mission, specifically through the lens of the Institute Strategic Plan. Focused on telling the story of Tech's dynamic faculty, staff, and students, he also serves as advisor to the Vice President of Institute Communications.

Previously, Webb served as Director of Communications at Georgia Tech's Institute Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, and Director of Communications at Georgia State University, spearheading communications activities for the library system at the largest institution in the state of Georgia. His work and campaigns have been featured in and by NBC News, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, New America, Biltmore Radio, and the Mellon Foundation. In 2013, Webb was awarded an Emmy for Outstanding Cultural Affairs from the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences for his work on a short-form documentary.

A two-time graduate of the University of Georgia, Webb holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in advertising and a Master of Arts degree in Journalism & Mass Communication. He is also a strong advocate for lifelong learning and holds a Graduate Certificate in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion from the University of South Florida. Through his work and dedication, Webb continues to be a driving force in advancing inclusive communication and strategic leadership in higher education.

Gavin Godfrey

Gavin Godfrey

Gavin Godfrey is an award-winning journalist who writes about diversity and culture for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Before joining the AJC, Gavin worked with Canopy Atlanta, Mailchimp, CNN, and Creative Loafing. He loves music, film, and Atlanta sports.