Today I want to recognize an amazing scientist I have had the opportunity to meet this year. Dr. Bithi De grew up in a rural part of Eastern India. Her parents and family members always encouraged her to pursue her passion for science. And she did! Following high school, she left the village for undergraduate studies in the city of Kolkata and eventually moved to the USA for graduate school. During her PhD, Bithi worked on the interaction between Arctic warming and large-scale atmospheric circulation changes at Purdue University and as a visiting student at LDEO Columbia University. Bithi is now a postdoctoral research scientist working with Dr. George Tselioudis at NASA GISS and Dr. Lorenzo Polvani at APAM Columbia University. Her current research focuses on understanding the relationship between atmospheric dynamics and cloud-radiative feedbacks by using a combination of observations and global climate model simulations.
Not only is Bithi a great scientist, but she also actively looks for opportunities to inspire, engage, and guide the next generation of scientists! Bithi is currently a NASA GISS mentor as part of NASA's Internship program. Bithi is mentoring a wonderful undergraduate student, Kendra Herweck, doing research on the project "Arctic-ENSO Teleconnections and its impact on Extreme Weather Events". And, as busy as Bithi already is, as soon as she learned that there was a need for science professionals to act as judges for GLOBE's 2021 International Virtual Science Symposium (IVSS), she instantly expressed her interest to become a judge. Bithi evaluated five GLOBE 2021 IVSS projects, providing expert feedback to young inspiring scientists!
I feel so lucky to know Bithi and to witness how she empowers students so they can become accomplished scientists too!
Thank you, Bithi, for everything you do :)