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Not surprisingly, I would later find out that the time on his undergraduate thesis was in competition with glassblowing and top-level water polo (he was the 2009 captain of the water polo team! It struck me that Gregor, a senior in civil and environmental engineering and a glass artist, would be the ideal researcher to investigate and “engineer” a solution for a conundrum that the American glass industry is currently struggling with.In 2006 at the Toledo Museum of Art, the million Glass Pavilion opened as a symbol of America’s “Glass City.” This new structure reflects the legacy of its local glassmakers.
Apart from a single curved glazed dome in a German doctoral study, Gregor was the first to demonstrate the potential these curved glass structures hold.
He disseminated the findings of his thesis in a publication in a conference held in fall 2010 in Shanghai, the host of the World Expo. On Class Day, I got to meet Gregor’s parents and brother.
I enjoyed the ceremony in particular because I knew that Gregor was going to win not one but two prizes. Mueller Award for “combining high scholarly achievement in the study of engineering with quality performance in intercollegiate athletics” and the Moles Award for “outstanding promise in construction engineering and management.” I enjoyed the close relationship that I formed with Gregor over my first year in Princeton.
I think this friendship will last long past graduation. Horstmeyer: Engineering students are afforded the luxury of considerable flexibility when choosing their theses.
The advisers then explain their side of the thesis journey—from the steps for writing a successful thesis to the close relationships that develop between students and faculty members in a way that is “quintessentially Princeton.” Adviser reflection by Sigrid M.
Adriaenssens: A few months into my February appointment as an assistant professor at Princeton University, Gregor Horstmeyer arrived in my office.
The shell proved to be extremely thin and could be constructed of minimal amounts of materials, use little resources, and be a showcase of sustainability.
Over the winter break, Gregor completed the shell in Palo Alto and shipped the whole model to Princeton for assembly. This extremely thin, strong, stable, and beautiful glass curved object was sitting in my lab.
Starting my thesis work the summer before senior year was invaluable for the successful completion of my project.
I returned to campus in the fall with a more refined idea of what I was going to be examining, a better idea of the scope of my project, and a long and clear list of questions I needed to address. Sifting through books, journals, and research papers in search of the answers to your list of questions can feel like an overwhelming task at the beginning.