Milton and Rosalind Chang Pivoting Fellowship

The OSA Foundation is pleased to announce that Araceli Venegas-Gómez, University of Strathclyde, UK, was selected as the inaugural Milton and Rosalind Chang Pivoting Fellow. Venegas-Gómez will focus on advancing awareness and understanding of quantum technologies and policy. 

Society has a need for scientific expertise. Technical competency is an invaluable resource sought after by other fields, where a firm grounding in science or technology is an asset. The Milton and Rosalind Chang Pivoting Fellowship provides unrestricted fellowships to talented, young optical scientists and engineers who believe their expertise can be utilized to improve society beyond the bench. The program is intended to encourage people of exceptional talent to pursue their newfound passion. Each year, one OSA member is presented a “no strings” stipend of $50,000. This fellowship is an investment in a person’s commitment to advancing science through non-traditional career paths (e.g. public policy, government, and journalism). The Fellowship is given in support of the individual not a project.


  • OSA member who has received their terminal degree within the last five years.
  • OSA student members who will receive their terminal degree by the application deadline.

Selection Criteria

The Pivoting Fellowship Selection Committee will evaluate proposals based on the quality of each entry and according to the following criteria:

  1. Impact: Could the individual in his or her proposed career make a positive impact on society and the technical community?
  2. Ability: Has the individual demonstrated excellence in their current field?
  3. Merit: Is the proposed career serving a need and the exploration is compelling and innovative?
  4. Knowledge Gained: Will the applicant gain valuable experience relevant to the intended purpose?
  5. Feasibility and Risk: Allowing for a generous amount of risk-taking, could the individual succeed in transitioning to the proposed field/career?
  6. Need: Would the receipt of this prize be an enabler for the recipient to get additional financial support to adequately explore the new career path?  

Application Process

Applications will be submitted to the OSAF committee for review and selection annually. Applicatns will complete their applications through the OSA SPECTRUM portal. Applications must include:

  1. Statement of Intent:  Highlight individual’s intent with regard to leveraging their scientific expertise and knowledge to the betterment of the field and society outside of the traditional career paths.
    1. Goals and objectives
    2. Skills to be applied or gained
    3. Strengths to be developed
  2. Resume: Should be adapted to reflect skills and aptitude applicable outside of the traditional research and engineering careers.
  3. Two Reference Letters.