Scholarship Award Alumni - Joheen Chakraborty

Joheen Chakraborty

Joheen Chakraborty

Columbia University
Astrophysics & Computer Science
Bachelor of Arts - 2022
2021 USRA Distinguished Undergraduate

Joheen has been interested in space for as long as he can remember, from a childhood interest in amateur astronomy to an eventual fascination with astrophysics. In his junior year of high school, he decided he would pursue a career in research. When he arrived as an undergraduate at Columbia, he started on research projects in X-ray astronomy and exoplanet detection, and hasn't looked back since.

Since then, his work has branched out into planetary science, high-energy astrophysics, and cosmology. His work across a large breadth of topics as an undergraduate captures what inspires him most about astrophysics: the incredible diversity of phenomena across a wide range of physical regimes, studying which can yield unique insights to propel forward our understanding of nature. Looking forward, Joheen is considering pursuing further research in high-energy astrophysics to probe the outermost extremes of our models of physics and relativity.

Joheen feels grateful for the patient and supportive guidance of his many research mentors throughout college. From them, he has learned not only a great deal of astronomy and physics, but also how to develop balance, confidence, and creativity as a researcher. He does his best to return the favor by participating in teaching and outreach activities, aiming to create the same environments of open inquiry which allowed him to grow as a scientist.

Joheen's advice to students interested in space research is to get involved in a project as soon as (comfortably) possible, and try to gain some experiences in different subfields. Often accumulating a breadth of knowledge can inform your work in interesting and unexpected ways!