The second annual Summer Engineering Institute, known affectionately as SENGI, was conducted on campus for two weeks in July and was designed to teach 32 high school students the joy, creativity, discovery, and complexity of engineering. The residential summer camp was a multi-faceted program that allowed students to explore how engineers envision creative and practical solutions to benefit the everyday lives of people and their communities. The institute also awarded a full SENGI scholarship (in concert with the Massachusetts Department of Transportation) for one inner city high school student from Boston. The two co-directors of the SENGI camp were college lecturer Bernd F. Schliemann and Paula Sturdevant Rees, who is the director of the College of Engineering Diversity Programs Office (DPO). They were assisted by Mathilda Tuuli, the assistant director of the DPO.

Professor Susan Roberts of the Chemical Engineering Department and Professor Elizabeth Vierling of the Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology have received a $150,000 grant from the University of Massachusetts President’s Science and Technology (S&T) Fund to support their collaborative project, entitled “Massachusetts BioFoundry; Center for Discovery & Synthesis of Bioactive and Industrial Molecules.” The S&T Fund is intended to support campus and multi-campus initiatives that strengthen the university’s research and development base, deepen our ties with Massachusetts industry and research institutions, leverage external resources, and contribute to economic growth in the Commonwealth. Roberts is also the associate dean of the Graduate School and director of the Institute for Cellular Engineering (ICE). Read related press release published in Business West.

Professors  Sergio F. Breña, principal investigator, and Scott A. Civjan, co-principal-investigator, of the Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) Department have received a $174,923 grant from New England Transportation Consortium. The 24-month project will focus on “Development of High Early-Strength Concrete for Accelerated Bridge Construction Closure Pour Connections.” The main objective of the research project is to develop and validate non-proprietary concrete mixtures that are capable of developing high early strength without detrimentally affecting their long-term durability. The concrete mixtures developed in this research are intended for use in closure pours in accelerated bridge construction projects in New England.