NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program
The NSF GRFP supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines who are pursuing research-based masters and doctoral degrees at accredited United States institutions.
Graduate Education for Minorities (GEM) Ph.D. Engineering Fellowship
The goal of this program is to increase the number of minority students who pursue doctoral degrees in the natural science disciplines — chemistry, physics, earth sciences, mathematics, biological sciences, and computer science.
Thurston Brevett is an electrical engineer with a primary interest in remote sensing. Moving from rigorous coursework into the puzzles and challenges of research, Brevett joined the Awareness and Localization of Explosives-Related Threats (ALERT) lab in his first year on campus. Brevett’s work on the lab’s synthetic aperture radar (SAR), designing filtering techniques and surface reconstruction algorithms, not only helped the lab earn a $1.2 million grant but also, and more importantly, helped significantly advance the ability of future airport personnel scanners to detect concealed non-metallic objects. While the applications of this work in the realm of airport security are clear, Brevett’s drive to help us “see” better and image the world around us with greater clarity has implications in any number of fields: detecting and locating heartbeats hidden within rubble, mapping the unknown ocean floor, identifying and analyzing a tumor that might not be apparent to the human eye.
Brevett is also a passionate educator and advocate for educational access, having undertaken research on parental and family engagement with Boston Partners in Education, chaired the Pre-College Initiative of the Black Engineering Student Society, and co-founded Bits and Bots, a program that teaches robotics to underserved youth in Boston.
Brevett will pursue his PhD in electrical engineering at Stanford University.