(Posted May 7, 2009)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Dan D'Orazio, a senior at Juniata College from Orangeville, Pa. studying physics and mathematics and the son of John and Pam D'Orazio, has been granted a Fulbright Fellowship to study at the University of Zurich in Zurich, Switzerland for the 2009-2010 academic year by the United States Department of State and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board.

D'Orazio, who graduates in May, is part of a program that sends more than 1,000 students abroad to study at foreign universities and sites. In 2008, he received an honorable mention placement in the competition for the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship.

He will be working on a project that will analyze the black hole in the center of the Milky Way galaxy.

The senior has extensive experience in research laboratories and will work in the computational astrophysics lab of Prasenjit Saha, an astrophysicist at the Swiss university. He will be working on a project that will analyze the black hole in the center of the Milky Way galaxy. After his Fulbright Fellowship, he will choose a graduate program for astrophysics research.

D'Orazio has garnered extensive research experience at Juniata, including two prestigious summer internships as part of the National Science Foundation's Research Experience for Undergraduate Fellowships program. In summer 2008, he worked at Harvard University's Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, where he worked with postdoctoral researcher Gregory Dobler on a gravitational lensing project. He is currently working with Dobler to submit a paper on the research.

He also spent summer 2007 working at SUNY Stonybrook in an optics research laboratory as part of the NSF research program.

D'Orazio also spent time on research projects in Juniata laboratories during each of year of his Juniata career. He worked with Jamie White, Book Professor of Physics, on a quantum optics project. D'Orazio researched methods to stabilize lasers used in the project. He also competed his senior mathematics thesis with Cathy Stenson, associate professor of mathematics.

The 22-year-old senior has presented his research at several professional conferences and meetings. He presented his quantum optics research at two successive national meetings of the Optical Society of America and the American Physical Society in 2007 in San Jose, Calif., and in 2008 in Rochester, N.Y. D'Orazio also presented his research at a national meeting of the American Astronomical Society in January in Long Beach, Calif. He also made presentations at the National Conference on Undergraduate Research in Salisbury, Md. in 2008 and for the past two years at Juniata's Liberal Arts Symposium.

He is active on campus, serving as president of the Society of Physics Students in 2006-2007, and as vice president from 2007 to 2009. He also was vice president of the Null Set, Juniata's student math club, from 2006 to 2009. He is a member of Omicron Delta Kappa, the national leadership honor society; the Juniata Honor Society, and Sigma Phi Sigma, the national physics honor society.
Since its inception in 1946, the Fulbright Program has provided more than 290,000 participants worldwide with the opportunity to observe each others' political, economic and cultural institutions, exchange ideas and embark on joint ventures of importance to the general welfare of the world's inhabitants. In the past 56 years, 100,000 students from the United States have benefited from the Fulbright experience.

The Fulbright Program is sponsored by the United States Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Financial support is provided by an annual appropriation from Congress to the Department of State, with significant contributions from participating governments and host institutions in the United States and abroad. The presidentially appointed J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board formulates policy guidelines and makes the final selection of all grantees.

The Institute of International Education administers and coordinates the activities relevant to the U.S. Student Program, including an annual competition for the scholarships.

The Fulbright Program also awards grants to American teachers and faculty to do research, lecture and teach overseas. In addition, some 2,200 foreign Fulbright students and scholars come to the United States annually to study, carry out research and lecture at U.S. universities, colleges and secondary schools.

Contact April Feagley at feaglea@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3131 for more information.