Meenakshi Wadhwa Wins the 2021 J. Lawrence Smith Medal from the National Academy of Sciences

Meenakshi Wadhwa, director of the School of Earth and Space Exploration at Arizona State University, received the 2021 J. Lawrence Smith Medal from the National Academy of Sciences. The J. Lawrence Smith Medal is awarded every three years for recent original and meritorious investigations of meteoric bodies. The award includes a $50,000 prize. It has been presented since 1888.

In a statement, the Academy said that “Wadhwa has deepened the world’s understanding of the evolutionary history of the solar system through her significant contributions to the sciences of cosmochemistry, solar system chronology, meteoritics and trace element geochemistry.”

“I’m truly humbled when I think of those who were awarded this medal before me,” Professor Wadhwa said. “But I’m also very honored, not just for myself but also for all the amazing students and postdoctoral researchers I’ve been so fortunate to work with over the years.”

Professor Wadhwa has been on the faculty at Arizona State University since 2006, first as director of the Center for Meteorite Studies and professor in the School of Earth and Space Exploration.

Dr. Wadhwa earned a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in geology from Panjab University in Chandigarh, India. She holds a Ph.D. in earth and planetary sciences from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri.

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