The University of Massachusetts Amherst
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College of Engineering Selects Michael Knodler and Yubing Sun as 2022 Outstanding Faculty Members

Michael Knodler and Yubing Sun

Knodler and Sun 

Congratulations to Professor Michael Knodler of the Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) Department and Assistant Professor Yubing Sun of the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering (MIE) Department for being chosen as the outstanding faculty members in the College of Engineering for 2022.

Knodler, the College of Engineering Associate Dean of Research and Graduate Affairs, is the recipient of the Outstanding Senior Faculty Award. 

According to College of Engineering Dean Sanjay Raman, “Knodler is internationally renowned for his work on transportation safety and operations, which has had a significant impact on the practice of transportation engineering. As director, he has transformed the UMass Transportation Center into a leading organization for transportation education, research, and public outreach.”

CEE Department Head John Tobiason says that “Dr. Knodler’s excellence in research is documented by 67 refereed journal publications (23 since he was promoted to full professor less than four years ago), 109 sponsored research projects, with over $36 million in funding, numerous student fellowships, a large number of completed graduate students (including nine Ph.D. and 41 M.S. students), and extensive conference proceedings and presentations.”

Knodler has compiled this record while also being director of the UMass Transportation Center since 2014, leading a team of about 20 people, as well as being co-director of the Arbella Insurance Human Performance Laboratory since 2005, and director of UMassSafe from 2006 to 2018.

Sun, who is also an adjunct in the Biomedical Engineering Department, is the recipient of the Barbara H. and Joseph J. Goldstein Outstanding Junior Faculty Award

“Sun has established a leading research program in the areas of mechanobiology and stem cell engineering,” says Dean Raman. “His work has pioneered the development of unique synthetic cellular microenvironments that mimic in-vivo embryonic environments and has led to significant advances in tissue engineering.”

According to MIE Head Sundar Krishnamurty, “In his short tenure, Professor Sun has established himself as a pioneering researcher with national and international impact in engineering and biomedical research, while simultaneously building a vibrant independent research program with robust interdisciplinary collaborations within the department and across campus….”

Krishnamurty adds that “Professor Sun has been recognized as a trailblazer in his profession, as evidenced by his prestigious NSF CAREER award, [National Institutes of Health or NIH] R01 award, and his NIH R21 award.”

As one senior faculty member says, “In my 21 years at the University of Massachusetts, I have rarely seen a junior faculty member whose productivity can equal that of Professor Sun.”

(April 2022)