Rawlings Presidential Research Scholars

Program Overview

The Hunter R. Rawlings III Cornell Presidential Research Scholars program selects highly motivated students and provides them with the opportunity to conduct financially supported, faculty mentored research throughout their undergraduate years. Students are encouraged to pursue their intellectual interests through research in any area of study including the humanities, physical and biological sciences, social sciences, arts and engineering. Selected RCPRS students have demonstrated academic excellence in addition to personal characteristics necessary to becoming a great researcher. Participating in a world-class research community early in a student’s career promotes academic growth and opens doors to the future.

An anonymous gift to the university created the Cornell Presidential Research Scholars program in 1996. In 2006, Cornell’s Board of Trustees named the program in honor of former president Hunter R. Rawlings III in recognition of Rawlings' commitment to students and scholars.

More information can be found here


Post graduate plans: 55 percent of RCPRS graduates go directly on to graduate school (vs. Cornell average of 34 percent); of those, more than 70 percent go beyond a master's program (PhD, MD, DVM, JD, etc.)

Graduation honors: Nearly half of RCPRS seniors are distinguished graduates (cum laude, distinction in research, summa cum laude, honors)

Honors theses: More than half of RCPRS students submit a senior honors thesis

Fields of research: RCPRS students are engaged in research across the university, in all colleges and countless majors. A general breakdown shows that:

  • 39 percent are involved in social science or humanities research
  • 36 percent are involved in life science research (predominantly biology-related)
  • 25 percent are involved in physical sciences/engineering

Current A&S Scholars

Cornell Presidential Research Scholars

Class of 2023

Jeffrey Backus                   Physics & Mathematics

Julia Fan                               Biological Sciences

Benjamin Hack                  Biological Sciences

Gabrielle Hill                       Africana Studies/ Environment & Sustainability

Alexandria Kim                  Government

Zachary Lakkis                   Biological Sciences

Hannah Master                 Archaeology, Near Eastern Studies

Malavika Ramarao           Biological Sciences

Tony Valencia                    Biology; German

Zhiyuan Zhou                     History, College Scholar, and Government

Luke O'Leary                      Economics

Class of 2024

Aanya Bhandari                 Economics

Eric Gan                               Biological Sciences

Alice Rau                              Economics

Adriana Palmieri                Chemistry

Victoria Rinn                       Government

Robert Winslow                 Government

Sarina Zhou                        Economics

Class of 2025

Abdelrhman Abdelrhman             Chemistry and Chemical Biology

Adriana Arce                      Government

Mikaal Aziz                          Government

Patrick Choo                       Biological Sciences

Blythe Hodgden                Chemistry and Chemical Biology

Claire Kim                            Biological Sciences

Tejal Nair                             Mathematics

Ben Neuwirth                    Computer Sciences

Charles Preston                 Classics (Greek, Latin)

Tomas Salgado                  Mathematics

Netra Shetty                      Biological Sciences

Caroline Sun                       Statistical Science

Orion Tian                           Computer Science

Gavin Zhou                         Biological Sciences

Class of 2026

Alexandra Allen                     Classics (Greek, Latin)

Justine Choi                             Chemistry and Chemical Biology

Nahid Hassan                         Economics

Ethan Amoh                            Chemistry and Chemical Biology

Aaryan Pugazendhi              Biological Sciences (AS)

Estrella Carbajal Leon          Biological Sciences (AS)

Rebekah Rickman                  Biology and Society (AS)

Sanjana Vittal                           Undeclared