Honorary fellows: Professor Mildred Dresselhaus

Professor Mildred Dresselhaus was born in the Bronx, New York City. She was educated in the New York City public education system until she received a Fulbright Fellowship to attend the Cavendish Laboratory, Cambridge University (1951-52).

Dresselhaus began her MIT career at the Lincoln Laboratory, where she switched from research on superconductivity to magneto-optics, and carried out a series of experiments which led to a fundamental understanding of the electronic structure of semi-metals, especially graphite.

A leader in promoting opportunities for women in science and engineering, Dresselhaus received a Carnegie Foundation grant in 1973 to encourage women's study of traditionally male dominated fields, such as physics. In 1973, she was appointed to The Abby Rockefeller Mauze chair, endowed in support of the scholarship of women in science and engineering.

Dresselhaus was awarded the National Medal of Science in 1990 in recognition of her work on electronic properties of metals as well as expanding the opportunities of women in science and engineering. In 2000-2001, she was the Director of the Office of Science at the US Department of Energy.