KINGSTON, RI – August 4, 2022 – Raymond Turrisi, who graduated from the University of Rhode Island in May with a dual degree in mechanical engineering and computer science, has been awarded a Fellowship in The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi — the oldest that country. and the most selective collegiate honors society for all academic disciplines. Turrisi is one of 62 recipients nationwide to receive a Phi Kappa Phi Fellowship.
As a Phi Kappa Phi Fellow, Turrisi, at West Warwick, is pursuing a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering and applied physics and ocean engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institutes Joint Program.
“I am grateful to have been selected for the fellowship. Achieving a fellowship from an honor society like Phi Kappa Phi means that you not only joined because you believe you align with the organization’s mission and core values, but after they have had the opportunity to learning about you, they chose to recognize and sponsor your academic ambitions,” said Turrisi, who received an $8,500 award. “What is unique about the Phi Kappa Phi Fellowship is that it is a cash payment given directly to the recipient. It is up to you to choose how to use it for whatever you believe best supports your graduate studies and career.The fellowships they award to 62 recipients each year can be a life-changing asset to receive after graduation.
The first in his family to attend college, Turrisi has compiled an impressive list of accomplishments at URI, in the classroom and research lab and in extracurricular activities — all while balancing education with a nearly full -time work schedule.
During his sophomore year, Turrisi began marine robotics and automation research as part of the Smart Ocean Systems Lab at URI’s Graduate School of Oceanography. Among his research projects, he designed a multipurpose autonomous underwater vehicle and developed a differential tilting thruster. He also participated in the URI Engineering Capstone Design program, a yearlong team project in which students develop an engineering solution to a real-world challenge. Turrisi helped develop an automated malting system for a local small craft brewery.
Along with publishing two papers and winning several undergraduate research grants, Turrisi was honored with a Barry Goldwater Scholarship, one of the most prestigious undergraduate awards in the country, and was awarded a URI Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship and a nine-month stipend. to further his research. .
Among his extracurricular activities, Turrisi serves as captain of the URI Hydrobotics club, helping to increase membership from 7 to 29 members, and as a project manager for the student club, URI Engineers for a Sustainable World. He also served as vice president of the engineering honor society Tau Beta Pi, where he organized tutoring for more than 70 engineering students, at a time when most undergraduate classes were online due to the pandemic. In his senior year, he was awarded a Tau Beta Pi graduate fellowship – one of about 30 awards given each year among more than 300 applicants from engineering schools across the US.
In June, Turrisi started a full assistantship in the joint doctoral program MIT-Woods Hole, among the most famous ocean research institutions in the world. He works at the MIT Autonomy Lab, where he will specialize in autonomy and robotics for marine applications.
“I hope to dedicate my career in the field of robotics, in areas that improve how robots join the human world around our ergonomics without accommodation and perform tasks that are not suitable for people,” Turrisi said in a University profile in May. “Some tasks require implementation in challenging or dangerous environments, and require strong autonomy, such as extraterrestrial and deep sea exploration. I am most interested in the intersection of artificial intelligence, controls, and the animation of mechanical systems.
Founded in 1897, Phi Kappa Phi is the nation’s oldest and most selective collegiate honor society for all academic disciplines, with chapters in more than 325 colleges and universities in the US, its territories and the Philippines.
Since its creation in 1932, the Phi Kappa Phi Fellowship Program has become one of the society’s most visible and financially supportive endeavors, allocating $649,000 annually to outstanding students for first-year graduate or professional study. The selection process for a fellowship is based on the applicant’s evidence of graduate potential, undergraduate academic achievement, service and leadership experience, letters of recommendation, personal statement of educational vision and career goals, and acceptance. in an approved graduate or professional program.
To view the complete list of 2022 Phi Kappa Phi Fellows, visit www.PhiKappaPhi.org/2022Fellowships.