About me

I am a postdoc in the physics department of the University of Texas at Austin working on the physics of two dimensional and nanoscale systems with Professor Allan MacDonald's research group. My goal is to understand the electronic and optical properties of two dimensional systems and interfaces and how they differ from the properties of three dimensional systems. I am also enthusiastic about the python programming language and promoting a love of science in my community.

I received my PhD from Penn State University in 2012. At Penn State I was a member of the Center for Nanoscale Science, an interdiciplinary research project focused on understanding nanoscale materials. I received several honors for my work, including the The Alumni Association Dissertation Award for my thesis research on the electronic transport properties of graphene and topological insulators and the Peter Eklund Memorial Lectureship from the physics department, given to graduate students for excellence in research and presentation skills. In 2011 I visited Peking University in Beijing as a Fellow in the National Science Foundation's East Asia and Pacific Summer Institutes.

I believe that participation in outreach activities not only provides a valuable service to the public and encourages the next generation of scientist, but also enriches my life as a physicist. My overall vision is for kids and adults everywhere to know that although it takes a lot of hard work to be on the forefront of knowledge, it is also very exciting! And even for those who don't choose science as a career, science can be fun. Through my connections at the Center for Nanoscale Science, I was able to work towards this goal at several outreach events. More recently, I gave a lecture at the Alice in Wonderland summer program for high school girls at the University of Texas.

Photograph of Ashley

Last update: April 6, 2014