Notable IMSA Alumni – Sabrina Gonzalez Pasterski ’10

Sabrina Gonzalez Pasterski ‘10, a proud first-generation Cuban-American and recipient of the 2019 IMSA Distinguished Leader Award, is the first female to graduate from MIT Physics #1. IMSA’s longest-serving teacher, Dr. Micah Fogel, inspired Sabrina to build an airplane in 2005! Sabrina is the second Ph.D. candidate from Harvard to have their dissertation published in Physics Reports–the other guy won the 2004 Nobel Prize for his 1974 dissertation. Brown University offered Sabrina an unsolicited assistant professorship but she declined the $1.1M offer from Brown to join the premier Canadian think tank: The Perimeter Institute and became a physics professor at age 27—the youngest of their 25 faculty members, and one of only three women. Sabrina has been named to Scientific American’s 30 under 30 list, the Forbes 30 under 30 list, the Forbes 30 under 30 All-Star list, and finally, a Forbes 30 under 30 judge. She encourages you to attend every IMSA Summer event you can while still in elementary school as she did! Sabrina is currently on leave at the Princeton Center for Theoretical Science and a periodic visitor at the premier US think tank: The Institute for Advanced Study.

Most Recent Accomplishments
  • Sabrina is the first female to Chair the flagship annual conference for the extended string theory community known simply as: Strings
  • Sabrina is the founder and principal investigator of the Celestial Holography Initiative at the Perimeter Institute.
  • China is launching three satellites later this year to test Sabrina’s 2014 idea of detecting gravitational waves from space as opposed to LIGO.
  • Check out Sabrina’s most recent scientific talk at the Niels Bohr Institute in Copenhagen.