Natalie Stepien Receives NSF Fellowship and Internship at Samsung

natalie stepien

Natalie Stepien
PhD student
in Vision Science program

My primary research interest is in understanding how the visual system creates a coherent, organized representation of the world, especially in the case of ambiguous sensory information. My drive to explore this topic resulted in me applying to the Vision Science (VS) Program at UC Berkeley. To date, I am primarily motivated to address basic scientific questions about visual perception by using psychophysical techniques. With the committed and supportive mentorship and academic training I received from both faculty and students in the VS program, I applied for and was awarded the 2015 NSF Graduate Research Fellowship.

Becoming a professor at a research-oriented university has always been my ultimate goal, and the unparalleled intellectual rigor and cutting-edge technology in the VS Program will provide me with the training that is required to achieve this goal. In addition to this academic training, however, one of the unique factors that drew me to the VS Program is the vast amount of opportunities that it provides to explore areas of vision that lie outside of academia. Specifically, working in the UC Berkeley VS Program additionally exposed me to the applied aspects of vision science research.

Not only did the program make me aware of how vision could be applied in an industry setting, but it also offered me an opportunity to further explore this realm through a summer internship at Samsung Display in San Jose. During this internship, I will work on a project that involves high dynamic range imaging, and has a large visual perception component as well as an image color-processing component. The internship position also will offer an opportunity to publish the work completed during the summer.


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