The University of Massachusetts Amherst
University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Professor Ian R. Grosse (MIE) is retiring after more than 30 years of productive service to UMass Amherst. Among many other honors, Grosse is a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME).  Most recently, he has served as associate head of biomedical engineering focused on ABET accreditation preparations for this new program.

Assistant Professor Siyuan Rao of the Biomedical Engineering (BME) Department is currently working on a prestigious, three-year, $747,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to support her groundbreaking research on the neural circuitry mechanism of autism spectrum disorders.

 

After more than 13 successful and productive years at the College of Engineering and the Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) Department, Dr. Richard N. Palmer is retiring. Professor Palmer, who stepped down as head of the CEE department in September of 2019, has been serving as the university director of the Northeast Climate Adaptation Science Center (NE CASC) since he led its founding in 2012.

This fall the College of Engineering welcomes three very talented new faculty members to its ranks: Zachary (Zack) Westgate of the Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) Department as an associate professor; Robert (Bob) Niffenegger of the Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department as an assistant professor; and Stacyann Bailey of the Biomedical Engineering (BME) Department as an assistant professor.

Alumnus Parag Patel, who graduated from the UMass Electrical and Computer Engineering Department in 2004, is the co-founder and chief operating officer of Invoiced, a leading accounts receivable automation platform, which was just named to the Inc. 5000 List of America’s Fastest-Growing Private Companies. Inc. claims that its 5000 List is the most prestigious ranking of its kind for rating emerging companies.

Jim Lagrant, a senior lecturer and Professor of Practice in Manufacturing in the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department, has received a $19,967 Faculty Research Grant, as provided by the Healy Endowment, from the UMass Research and Engagement Office. The grant will support Lagrant’s project that he says will develop a student-designed, adaptable process for smart manufacturing, which will have a broad impact on our engineering education and “prepare our students for the fourth industrial revolution.”

The National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine has announced that Professor Robert W. Hyers of the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department was one of 18 distinguished academics appointed to the steering committee of the Decadal Survey on Biological and Physical Sciences Research in Space 2023-2032, which will create “a vision and strategy” for NASA’s future direction.

Two College of Engineering faculty members were among the 25 from UMass Amherst awarded tenure at the June meeting of the University of Massachusetts Board of Trustees. The two new tenured professors in the college are Colin J. Gleason of the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department and Jungwoo Lee of the Chemical Engineering Department and also an adjunct faculty member in the Biomedical Engineering Department.

Nianqiang “Nick” Wu, the Armstrong/Siadat Endowed Professor in the Chemical Engineering Department at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, is the principal investigator on a $3.4-million grant from the National Institutes of Health to support his creation of a portable optical sensor system for assisting in the diagnosis of traumatic brain injuries, which impact some 27-million people worldwide each year. Wu’s new testing system could be used in the field – at the scene of an accident or injury – and would take only minutes to obtain results.

Assistant Professor Jeremy Gummeson of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department was a guest on BYURadio’s “Top of Mind” program exploring the concept of the human wrist serving as the charging dock for wireless wearable devices. Gummeson is part of a UMass Amherst team that has designed a prototype system called “Shazam,” which uses skin to charge smartwatches and other wearable devices such as health and fitness trackers.

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