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University of California Santa Barbara
Academic Senate Awards

Prior Year Recipients

2017-18 Outstanding Graduate Mentor Award

Michael Bowers - Chemistry and Biochemistry

Michael Bowers is Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry, specializing in mass spectroscopy to study the structures of proteins, peptides and other biomolecules. A UCSB faculty member since 1968, Professor Bowers has supervised 40 Ph.D. students, with another 5 currently working under his guidance. Bowers is renowned for emphasizing teamwork in his laboratory and for building close relationships with the graduate and undergraduate students that work with him. One noted that “Mike makes every interaction a learning experience, where he challenges you to think of the big picture and fundamentally understand every result.” Another wrote that "Mike has consistently challenged me, but not in any overbearing way; [rather he does so] by having high expectations while allowing me to produce work in a way that doesn’t hinder my creativity." A former student, Dr. Gert von Helden, Senior research group leader at the Fritz Haber Institute of the Max Planck Society observed that "My firsthand experience in Mike's labs was invaluable for my development as a scientist and I am extremely grateful for having had (and still having) the chance to benefit from Mike’s mentorship." In recognition of this extended record of excellence, we are happy to present the 2018 Outstanding Graduate Mentor Award to Professor Michael Bowers.