Frater Clinches USA Today Academic Team Honors

Frater Clinches USA Today Academic Team Honors

CLINTON, NY - This month, Chemical Physics major Frater Marco Allodi (Alpha-Iota, pictured far right) became Hamilton College's second student in two years to clinch a spot on the USA Today All-USA College Academic Third Team. Fellowship Coordinator Ginny Dosch and Winslow Professor of Chemistry George Shields nominated Allodi, a native of Oriskany, N.Y., for the award.

Every February, the nation's number one newspaper pays tribute to 60 high-achieving undergraduate scholars who excel both in and out of the classroom. Out of the 500 students nominated each year for the honor, 20 academic all-stars make the Scholarship's First Team, and 40 make the Scholarship's Second and Third Teams.

"You can't go around asking for recognition, but when you see the caliber of students named to the first, second, and third teams, it's hard not to be excited about being a part of such a select group," Allodi said.

A member of the Hamilton College Chemical Society, Allodi collaborated on research with Shields and Co-Director of Molecular Design Karl Kirschner for the past three summers. In 2006, he authored the article "Do Hydroxyl Radical-Water Clusters, OH(H2O)n, n=1-5, Exist in the Atmosphere?" published in the Journal of Physical Chemistry A. He also presented research at the Sanibel Symposium in Florida, the MERCURY conference (an annual computational chemistry seminar for undergraduates hosted by Hamilton) and the Hamilton chapter of Sigma Xi's poster session for student researchers.

"Chemical Physics interests me because it combines two of my intellectual passions: chemistry and physics," Allodi explained. "I am interested in doing research on systems familiar to chemists, like materials, by using the tools of physics. I love this field because it allows me to bridge the gap between the two disciplines to produce innovative research."

A Goldwater Scholar, Phi Beta Kappa member, and member of the Hamilton Dean's List, Allodi hopes to get a Ph.D. in physical chemistry and become an academic. "Marco will make a wonderful professor," said Shields. "He's very outgoing. He's curious, intelligent, and good-natured. It is nice to have him working in the lab." In addition, Allodi is the recipient of a Hans H. Schambach Scholarship, awarded with admission to 10 members of the entering class based on academic promise; the Charles A. Dana Prize Scholarship; and the Phi Beta Kappa Book Prize.

But Allodi's talents extend well beyond the laboratory. On campus, he is an avid member of the Spanish Club, the Tae Kwon Do club, an RA for pre-freshman summer science researchers, Hamilton Christian Fellowship, a tenor in the Choir, and the Hypophetes in the Alpha-Iota Chapter of TKE. Off campus, he is a volunteer coach for an inner-city soccer team in the Cornhill area of Utica. Shields revealed that Allodi also teaches himself German.

Allodi credits the college and its liberal-arts emphasis for making him a well-rounded student, and, in particular, the chemistry and physics departments for motivating him to pursue a career in academia.

Adapted from Hamilton College News Release. If you would like to see your chapter news here, contact Communications Coordinator Tom McAninch.

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