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Three UW-Madison faculty members land Guggenheim Fellowships

April 14, 2015 By Tom Ziemer

Three University of Wisconsin–Madison faculty members have received 2015 Guggenheim Fellowships, awards that support remarkable mid-career scholars and artists.

Astronomy Professor Amy Barger, mathematics Professor Jordan Ellenberg and English Professor Lynn Keller were among the 175 scholars, artists and scientists selected by the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation out of more than 3,100 applicants for the honor on the basis of prior achievement and exceptional promise.

Photo: Amy Barger

Amy Barger

Barger, a Vilas Distinguished Achievement Professor, is an observational cosmologist who studies galaxies and supermassive black holes in the distant universe. For her Guggenheim Fellowship, she will observe at many wavelengths the most extreme star-forming galaxies in the universe to complete the cosmic history of star formation and infer the impact of supermassive black hole growth on galaxy growth.

Photo: Jordan Ellenberg

Jordan Ellenberg

Ellenberg, the John D. MacArthur Professor and Vilas Distinguished Achievement Professor of Mathematics, is the author of “How Not To Be Wrong,” a New York Times Best Seller that shows the influence of mathematics on our daily lives. He specializes in arithmetic algebraic geometry.

Ellenberg plans to continue his research into the deep connections between numbers and geometry, as well as investigating new directions in the geometry of data, together with colleagues at the Wisconsin Institute for Discovery.

Photo: Lynn Keller

Lynn Keller

Keller, the Martha Meier Renk-Bascom Professor of Poetry, studies contemporary North American poetry, particularly more experimental writing. She is also a faculty affiliate of the Center for Culture, History and Environment (CHE) and researches recent environmental poetry.

Keller will be using her fellowship to complete an ecocritical study titled “Nature’s Transformations: North American Poetry of the Anthropocene.” The book will examine 21st-century poetry by U.S. and Canadian poets who are engaging with the diverse environmental issues humans are encountering now. Keller considers how experimentation with form and language may open fresh ways of understanding or responding to the environmental crises we face.

Guggenheim Fellowships are designed to give scholars and artists the flexibility to pursue creative endeavors across a wide range of disciplines, including writing, performing arts, humanities scholarship or scientific research. Former U.S. Sen. John Simon Guggenheim and his wife, Olga, established the fellowships in 1925 in honor of their late son John. Since then, the foundation has granted more than $325 million in fellowships to almost 18,000 individuals.