The Class of 1939 Princeton Scholar Award is given to the undergraduate who, at the end of the junior year, has achieved the highest academic standing for all preceding college work at the University. This year, the award is shared by Alexander Iriza and Katherine Pogrebniak.Iriza, of Astoria, N.Y., attended the Dalton School. An A.B. candidate, he is a mathematics major pursuing certificates in applied and computational mathematics and applications of computing. He has received the Andrew H. Brown Prize for outstanding junior in mathematics and was awarded the Shapiro Prize for Academic Excellence twice.
Iriza's research centers on techniques of data analysis, including convex optimization and nonlinear dimensionality reduction. Previously, he has undertaken research of financial markets, as well as inertial fusion energy at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory. After graduation, he is considering either pursuing a doctorate in applied mathematics or moving directly into a career as a software developer.
This summer, Iriza conducted research in the fields of semidefinite programming and convex relaxation with Amit Singer, a professor of mathematics and the Program in Applied and Computational Mathematics.
Iriza plays violin with the Princeton Sinfonia and helps run the Princeton University Mathematics Competition and the North American Computational Linguistics Olympiad.