REU Student Grant Williams Wins National Research Competition Awards

Oklahoma State University student Grant Williams received second place for his oral research presentation at the American Meteorological Society’s 13th Conference on Artificial Intelligence in Phoenix, Arizona earlier this month.  The conference, held January 4-8, brought together computer scientists, climatologists, and meteorologists, with the goal of fostering collaboration between the groups, according to the conference’s organizing committee.  Williams’s presentation outlined his innovative computer algorithm that optimizes the efficiency of land-based wind farms.

Williams, a junior from Tulsa studying physics and mathematics at OSU, is an OK-LSAMP Scholar and a member of the Cherokee Nation.

His research project was developed last summer through the National Science Foundation’s Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program.  The REU program allowed Williams to perform research on the University of Oklahoma campus in Norman. 

This is the second award recently won by Williams for his REU research.  In October he was one of ten students honored for his oral presentation in environmental science at the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science national conference in Los Angeles.

Williams’s faculty and staff mentors on the project were Renee McPherson, Associate Professor of Geography and Environmental Sustainability at the University of Oklahoma, and April Taylor, Sustainability Scientist for the Chickasaw Nation. 

Williams says that the REU experience and the support of his mentors have helped him decide to pursue becoming a research scientist.

“The REU has really been opening doors for me and helping my chances of getting into a good grad school,” said Williams.

The Oklahoma Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) provided funding for Williams’s participation in the NSF REU program.  Daphne LaDue of the OU Center for Analysis and Prediction of Storms was the project coordinator.