University professor awarded the National Medal of Science

By Daily Illini Staff Report

Professor May Berenbaum, a Swandlund chair and head of the department of entomology, is among the 10 recipients of this year’s National Medal of Science.

She is being recognized for her work in the field of entomology, the study of insects.

Berenbaum created the Insect Fear Film Festival, which is celebrating its 32nd year on campus. The Film Festival engages hundreds of participants each year, showing feature length films, shorts and commentary on the films.

Berenbaum’s research focuses on the chemical mechanisms underlying interactions between insects and their host plants, including the detoxification of natural and synthetic chemicals, according to a University press release.

Her findings have produced hundreds of peer-reviewed scientific publications and 35 book chapters, according to a University press release.

The National Medal of Science is the nation’s highest honor for achievement and leadership in science, according to a press release from the White House.

Berenbaum will receive her medal at an award ceremony at the White House later this year.