Electronic Thesis & Dissertation

Outstanding Thesis & Dissertation Awards

The Outstanding Thesis/Dissertation (OTD) Awards are intended to recognize those USF graduates who have demonstrated exceptional performance during their graduate careers at USF and whose thesis or dissertation has resulted in significant impact to the discipline at the national level. Theses and Dissertations submitted for these awards should represent those that are considered to be in the top 2% of their specific discipline.

Nomination packets are sent to colleges and departments in late May and recipients will be chosen by mid-October.

Name Major Type Title
Brad Steele Physics Dissertation Computational Discovery of Energetic Polynitrogen Compounds at High Pressure
Renee Fleeman Cell Biology, Microbiology, and Molecular Biology Dissertation Discovering Antibacterial and Anti-Resistance Agents Targeting Multi-Drug Resistant ESKAPE Pathogens
Kimberly French Psychology (Industrial-Organizational) Dissertation Episodic Work-Family Conflict and Strain: A Dynamic Perspectiv
Amanda Palmer Psychology (Clinical) Thesis Parsing the Influences of Nicotine and Expectancies on the Acute Effects of E-cigarettes: A Balanced Placebo Experiment

Past Winners



Name Major Type Title
Ashley Basiorka Cancer Biology Dissertation Changing the Pathobiological Paradigm in Myelodysplastic Syndromes: The NLRP3 Inflammasome Drives the MDS Phenotype
Jeremy Cohen Integrative Biology Dissertation Climate Change Drives Outbreaks of Emerging Infectious Disease and Phenological Shifts
Prerna Malaney Pathology Dissertation Significance of PTEN Phosphorylation and its Nuclear Function in Lung Cancer


Name Major Type Title
Jacqueline L. Fries Chemistry Dissertation Chemical Investigation of Antarctic Marine Organisms & Their Role in Modern Drug Discovery
Nikita La Cruz Geosciences Thesis Schreibersite: Synthesis, Characterization and Corrosion and Possible Implications for Origin of Life
Kaya Wei Physics Dissertation Investigation of Low Thermal Conductivity Materials with Potential for Thermoelectric Applications
JungA Alexa Woo Molecular Medicine Dissertation Role of the Slingshot-Cofilin and RanBP9 Pathways in Alzheimer's Disease Pathogenesis


Name Major Type Title
Aaron Craig Curriculum & Instruction Dissertation National Investigation of Pre-Activity Health Screening Procedures in Fitness Facilities: Perspectives from American College of Sports Medicine Certified Health Fitness Specialists
Jayita Das Electrical Engineering Dissertation Auxiliary Roles in STT-MRAM Memory
Jianing Fu Cancer Biology Dissertation Targeting T-bet for Prevention of Graft-Versus-Host Disease and Leukemia Relapse after Allogeneic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation
Robert Hardy Marine Science Thesis Assessments of Surface-Pelagic Drift Communities and Behavior of Early Juvenile Sea Turtles in the Northern Gulf of Mexico


Name Major Type Title
Brian Barnes Marine Dissertation The Combined Effects of Light and Temperature on Coral Bleaching: A Case Study of the Florida Reef Tract Using Satellite Data
Taegan McMahon Integrative Biology Dissertation Effects of Pesticides and the Pathogenic Chytrid Fungus on Aquatic Organisms with an Emphasis on their Role in Amphibian Declines
Darrell Nicholson Creative Writing Thesis Waterborne
Hillary Seifert Molecular Pharmacology Dissertation The Inflammatory Response Initiated by the Spleen to Ischemic Stroke


Name Major Type Title
Lyudmyla Adamska Physics Dissertation Theory and Modeling of Graphene and Single Molecule Devices
Brian Dunst Philosophy Dissertation Embodying Social Practice: Dynamically Co-constituting Social Agency
Stefce Stefanoski Physics Dissertation Synthesis and Physical Properties of Group 14 Intermetallic Clathrates
Claire Stephens English Thesis Split City Blues


Name Major Type Title
Julia Galkiewicz Marine Science Dissertation Microbial Ecology and Functional Genomics of Deep-Water Coral-Associated Microbes
Cristina Mazza Geography, Environment, & Planning Thesis The Influence of Meteorological Parameters on Rainfall and Severe Weather in Pinellas County, FL
Cecelia Padros Applied Anthropology Dissertation The Participation of NGOs in Healthcare: The Case of Pediatric Cancer Treatment in Argentina
Adrian Popescu Applied Physics Dissertation Carbon Nanotubes Interactions: Theory and Applications


Name Major Type Title
Huijuan Chen Chemical Engineering Dissertation The Conversion of Low-Grade Heat into Power Using Supercritical Rankine Cycles
Jason Lewis Applied Physics Dissertation Device Physics of Solution Processable Solar Cells
Javier Pulecio Electrical Engineering Dissertation Field-Coupled Nano-Magnetic Logic Systems
Matthew Tucker Public Health Dissertation Phenotypic and Genotypic Analysis of In Vitro Selected Artemisinin Resistant Plasmodium falciparum


Name Major Type Title
Koutstav Bhattacharya Computer Science & Engineering Dissertation Architectures and Algorithms for Mitigation of Soft Errors in Nanoscale VLSI Circuits
Michael Conroy Applied Physics Dissertation Density Functional Theory Studies of Energetic Materials
Sabrina Hughes Art History Thesis Empty Streets in the Capital of Modernity: Formation of Lieux de Mémoire in Parisian Street Photography From Daguerre to Atget
Scott Segro Chemistry Dissertation Surface-Bonded Sol-Gel Sorbents for On-Line Hyphenation of Capillary Microextraction with High-Performance Liquid Chromatography


Name Major Type Title
Matt Beekman Applied Physics Dissertation Fundamental Investigations on Open-Framework Intermetallic Materials of Group 14
Angela Gilbert Geography Thesis Air Toxics and Equity: A Geographic Analysis of Environmental Health Risks in Florida
Vishnu Nanduri Industrial Engineering Dissertation Generation Capacity Expansion in Restructured Energy Markets
Praveen Sekhar Electrical Engineering Dissertation Nanomanufacturing of Silica Nanowires: Synthesis, Characterization and Applications


Name Major Type Title
Shayam Aravamudhan Electrical Engineering Thesis Development of Micro/Nanosensor Elements and Packaging Techniques for Oceanography
Upavan Gupta Computer Science & Engineering Dissertation Utilitarian Approaches for Multi-Metric Optimization in VLSI Circuit Design and Spatial Cluster
Rebecca Kinkade Davis Cancer Biology Dissertation Rb-Raf-1 Interaction as a Therapeutic Target for Proliferative
Luca Lai Applied Anthropology Dissertation The Interplay of Economics, Climatic and Cultural Change Investigated Through Isotopic Analyses of Bone Tissue: The Case of Sardinia 4000-1900 BC