Molly Finn

C. Mark Pirrung Family Jefferson Fellow
Marshalltown, Iowa
B.S. University of Rochester (2017)
M.S. University of Virginia (2019)
Graduate School of Arts & Sciences


Molly Finn is a graduate student in astronomy at the University of Virginia. Her research explores the formation of globular clusters, extremely old, dense clusters of stars that formed prolifically in the early universe. Molly uses the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA) in Chile to study starbursting galaxies with the aim of understanding the environment and physical conditions required to allow such extreme objects to form, and giving us a window into the environment of the early universe. In addition to her thesis work, Molly is an active volunteer with the outreach program Dark Skies, Bright Kids, through which she shares her passion for astronomy with students at underserved elementary schools throughout Virginia. She received her B.S. in physics and astronomy at the University of Rochester in 2017.

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The Jefferson Scholarship is the premier undergraduate scholarship at the University of Virginia. Scholars are selected through a rigorous selection process that is based on exceptional performance in the areas of leadership, scholarship and citizenship.

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The Jefferson Fellowship is the premier graduate fellowship offered at the University of Virginia. Based solely on merit, the Fellowship seeks to attract Ph.D. and M.B.A. candidates.

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The Jefferson Scholars Foundation, like its namesake, knows that virtue and talent come from all walks of life. Indeed it is this knowledge that drives the Foundation to search the world over for its recipients.

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