Raut honored with inaugural mentoring award from the Alabama Academy of Science

The Alabama Academy of Science has announced Samiksha Raut, Ph.D., as the inaugural recipient of the Adriel D. Johnson, Sr. Mentoring Award.

Stream RautSamiksha Raut, Ph.D.Samiksha Raut, Ph.D., associate professor in the University of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Biology, has been awarded the Adriel D. Johnson, Sr. Mentoring Award by the Alabama Academy of Science.

“I really feel quite humbled and honored to receive an inaugural award in the name of an outstanding educator from Alabama who has done so many phenomenal things, one who has helped so many people of color excel in STEM fields,” Raut said. “I am just grateful. I have made it a personal philosophy of mine to help as many students as I can as a privileged faculty member at UAB, and the majority of the students who have been mentored by me are first-generation, minority and second-generation immigrant students. It is truly heartwarming.”

The inaugural award was created to pay tribute to the memory of Tuskegee native Adriel D. Johnson Sr., Ph.D., who is remembered for his commitment to mentoring others, especially encouraging and supporting minority students in their pursuit of higher education in the STEM fields.

“I have always tried to push my students toward heights that they would never have imagined in their lives were possible,” Raut said. “They have given me opportunities to recognize the barriers facing them. This in turn has allowed me to better shape myself not only as a mentor but as a professor, because it positions my view to help find ways for them to overcome these challenges and ultimately empower them toward success.”

A mentee to Raut gave a warm testament to their relationship at the ceremony. “Dr. Raut has closely guided me in navigating the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) field as a woman of color,” she said. “She has taught me everything from professional development tips to being confident enough to present at conferences.”

The award was presented to her at the 100th Anniversary Celebration of Mentoring Event on Wednesday, March 8, in Birmingham at Vulcan Park and Museum.

“Ultimately, this award is a tribute to all mentees who gave me a chance to mentor them and, above all, all the wonderful mentors who trained me over the years and instilled values of great mentorship. I am forever grateful,” Raut said.