TALLAHASSEE, October, 2023
Brandon Gusto, a 2023 Scientific Computing Ph.D. graduate, was recently awarded a SMART SEED Grant by the Department of Defense (DoD) SMART Scholarship-for-Service Program. SMART SEED Grants are reserved for SMART Scholars who have obtained a Ph.D. in their chosen discipline and begun working at a DoD facility. The SMART SEED Grant is a highly selective and prestigious award that allows new professionals to establish foundational research and engineering efforts while being mentored by an established member of the DoD science and technology community. Since graduation, Gusto has worked at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division Newport.

Dr. Brandon Gusto

Gusto will use the grant funding to develop a new computational optimization software tailored for engineering design and prototyping applications. The software will employ a new multi-fidelity Bayesian approach. This functionality is hoped to significantly reduce the overall cost of solving optimization problems by incorporating relatively cheap to evaluate low fidelity models while being more selective about using expensive high-fidelity models.

Gusto was inspired to pursue this topic. “... I felt that, given my background in computational science research and my interest in optimization applications, I am in a unique position to deliver tools that could have a positive impact for the Navy within a relatively short time frame.”

When asked about how the Department of Scientific Computing prepared him to carry out this work, he replied, “The training in our department is top notch. We dealt with numerical partial differential equations, optimization, linear systems, machine learning, and more. There really isn’t an application out there that our graduates can’t jump right into and hit the ground running.”

The SMART Scholar SEED Grant Program develops future technical subject matter experts within the DoD and provides up to $100,000 per year for up to three years. An additional $25,000 per year may be requested to support the mentor working directly with the grant principal investigator or to encourage other efforts that assist in the professional and technical development of the PI. Examples include participation in technical training, rapid innovation or prototypes, collaboration with other DoD projects, mentorship and outreach.

For more information on the DoD Smart Scholarship and SMART Scholar SEED Grant, go to www.smartscholarship.org
For more on Brandon Gusto, go to this link.
For more information on the Department of Scientific Computing, go to sc.fsu.edu