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UD’S ‘FIGHTING ASTROPHYSICIST’ NAMED A TED FELLOW

January 24, 2019 - Article by Beth Miller UD photo by Kathy F. Atkinson, boxing photo by Terrence Hamilton Federica Bianco is one of 20 worldwide for 2019 Given the powerful intellect inside her skull, it’s a bit unnerving to watch a film of University of Delaware astrophysicist Federica Bianco at work in the boxing ring. No, that’s not a typo. When she’s not trying to figure out how the universe works, Bianco, who was among the research scientists who joined UD’s faculty last year in the cluster hire for the new Data Science Institute, moonlights as a professional boxer – bantamweight division. Now her outside-the-box approach to life and learning and interdisciplinary adventure has caught the imagination of the TED Fellows program, which she has been selected to join – one of only 20 fellows worldwide in the 2019 class, which was announced Wednesday, Jan. 23 in New York. She is the first UD faculty member to be named a TED Fellow. “My idea to pitch to them is that we don’t need to be just one thing,” she said. “We don’t need to choose one role and stick to it. We can be many things. Strictly speaking, science and criminal justice and boxing – you might not put those things together. But I learn a lot of things in the ring that help in the sciences and vice versa.”