The International Water Association (IWA) and the International Society for Microbial Ecology (ISME) have given the 2020 Rising Star Award to Fangqiong Ling, assistant professor of energy, environmental & chemical engineering at the McKelvey School of Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis.

Ling is recognized for her work using metagenomics, theory and machine learning to better understand principles underlying microbial ecosystems at the interface of manmade and natural environments.

Award ceremonies are scheduled for May 2021 at the IWA World Water Congress and Exhibition in Copenhagen, Denmark, and August 2022 in Cape Town, South Africa.

The Rising Star Award is one of two BioCluster awards given jointly by the IWA and ISME. McKelvey School of Engineering alumnus Bruce Rittman was the first recipient of a BioCluster award, given in 2014.


The McKelvey School of Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis promotes independent inquiry and education with an emphasis on scientific excellence, innovation and collaboration without boundaries. McKelvey Engineering has top-ranked research and graduate programs across departments, particularly in biomedical engineering, environmental engineering and computing, and has one of the most selective undergraduate programs in the country. With 140 full-time faculty, 1,387 undergraduate students, 1,448 graduate students and 21,000 living alumni, we are working to solve some of society’s greatest challenges; to prepare students to become leaders and innovate throughout their careers; and to be a catalyst of economic development for the St. Louis region and beyond.

Click on the topics below for more stories in those areas