WARF-Funded Graduate Students

The Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) plays an essential role in supporting the innovative research and graduate education that are cornerstones of the University of Wisconsin–Madison. WARF invests in graduate education through University Fellowships and Advanced Opportunities Fellowships/Graduate Research Scholars. The following profiles illustrate the diverse and important ways that WARF contributes to graduate student success at UW–Madison.

WARF-funded student profiles

  • Ruby Bafu

    PhD student, Sociology
    Ruby is working with a midwestern school district to study how microschools, which are smaller and often more personalized learning environments, utilize unique strategies for educating and supporting their students.

  • Katie Deaven

    PhD student, Philosophy
    Katie studies the philosophy of biology. She hopes her dissertation work will push the conversation further into a new direction.

  • Shannon Dillard

    PhD student, Geography
    Shannon uses remote sensing techniques to map thawing permafrost in Alaska. She is a collaborator on a Department of Energy project that seeks to understand the processes of permafrost thaw to improve predictions for the future.

  • Marie-Agathe Simonetti

    PhD candidate, Art History
    Marie-Agathe's dissertation examines photography as an expression of politics from the French and Vietnamese perspectives.

  • Genesie Miller

    PhD student, Japanese
    Genesie is a scholar of Japanese literature and visual culture. She focuses on early modern Japanese feminine and queer sexualities in poetry and images, exploring the range of expressions of the feminine experience in early modern Japan.

  • Elliott Brandsma

    PhD student, Scandinavian Studies
    As a PhD student, Elliott studies how trends and features of literary modernism took root across the Nordic region during the first half of the 20th century. Two of the authors he works on – Icelandic novelist Halldór Laxness and Swedish poet Harry Martinson – have won the Nobel Prize for Literature.

  • Piper Rawding

    PhD student, Pharmaceutical Sciences
    Piper's work in the Hong research lab focuses on developing nanocarriers to improve cancer immunotherapy. By understanding and controlling the interactions that polymers have with cells, researchers like Piper can engineer nanocarriers' biological behaviors to improve the efficiency and accuracy of cancer-battling drugs.

  • Jeffrey M. Thomas

    PhD student, French
    Jeffrey M. Thomas is a PhD student in French whose research focuses on literature about and from Corsica, specifically from the 19th and 21st centuries.

  • Sheena Finnigan

    PhD student, History
    Sheena’s research focuses on the history of motherhood among non-elite women in classical Rome.

  • Cortney Anderson Kramer

    PhD candidate, Art History
    If you’ve ever driven by a roadside concrete art park – think sculptures, grottos, or even houses – and been intrigued, art history PhD candidate Cortney Anderson Kramer is the person to ask. Kramer studies and writes about this unique art style in the Midwest.

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