Former Grad Student Receives Award from Malaysian Government

Chin Heo, center, with Dato' Kamel Mohamad, Deputy Secretary General of Higher Education in Malaysia (left), and Associate Prof. Dr. Puzziawati Abdul Ghani (right)

Chin Heo, center, with Dato’ Kamel Mohamad, Deputy Secretary General of Higher Education in Malaysia (left), and Associate Prof. Dr. Puzziawati Abdul Ghani (right)

The Department of Entomology would like to congratulate former Ph.D. student Chong Chin Heo as he received the highest honor from the Malaysian government during a special ceremony held at the Embassy of Malaysia in Washington, D.C. on November 5.

Chong Chin Heo received the Perdana Scholar Award in the Research, Innovation and Publication category from the Malaysian government. Given to selected Malaysian students that have studied in the United States, the award’s goal is to identify, document and promote Malaysia students that have excelled in academics, leadership sports, entrepeneurship, innovation and research in their studies.

He was the only recipient that was in the Research, Innovation and Publication category. Heo was recognized for his outstanding work in research while being mentored under Dr. Jeffery Tomberlin.

Heo’s research project was titled “Sensitivity of Arthropod and Microbial Communities Associated with Vertebrate Carrion in Response to Delayed Blow Fly Access: Implication for Carrion Ecology and Forensic Entomology”. His research was in collaboration with Dr. Tawni Crippen – USDA – ARS and Dr. Jacqueline Ann Aitkenhead-Peterson from the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences, Texas A&M University.

“I am very proud of Chin and his accomplishments during his PhD research,” Tomberlin said. “This award is quite prestigious and demonstrates the quality research he conducted.”

Heo was very excited and proud to receive the award. “I must thank FLIES lab (especially my advisor, Dr Jeffery Tomberlin), my PhD committees, and The Entomology Department, Texas A&M University, for nurturing me and shaping me into a researcher,” he said. “I am also grateful to the Malaysian Government who has been aware and appreciate our effort in venturing carrion ecology and forensic entomology.”

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