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First-year student Connor MacFarlane of the Chemical Engineering Department won the Innovation Challenge Minute Pitch competition on October 16, thus earning a first-place prize of $1,000 in addition to an audience choice award of $250. MacFarlane’s prize-winning venture is a trailblazing insulin-delivery system for all insulin-dependent diabetics. The Minute Pitch was the initial stage of the four-part Innovation Challenge, which resumes on November 20 with the Seed Pitch.

See full web story and photo gallery »

Congratulations to the College of Engineering team of graduate students Harshad Kulkarni, Arjun Mohan, Husain Tawawala, and Aashish Yadav, who won the EY (for Ernst & Young Partners In Education Program) Inclusive Leadership Case Competition held on October 18 during the two-day Inclusive Leadership Summit (ILS), hosted by EY and the Isenberg School of Management as the nexus of campus diversity and inclusion efforts. The competition challenged students to better understand the thinking around inclusion and diversity in the workplace.

The UMass News Office reports that Kara Peterman of the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department is one of a diverse group of faculty each to receive a 2019-2020 Sustainability Curriculum Fellowship, an interdisciplinary program that includes a $1,000 professional development grant and monthly brainstorming sessions to learn about best practices. The News Office says that Peterman will attend a green building expo or visit an international green building center for inspiration and perspective as she aims to make sustainability a fundamental design constraint in a new course to be offered in the spring, Unified Structural Design. The fellowship is designed to help UMass faculty cultivate teaching excellence in sustainability. See News Office story12 Faculty Receive Sustainability Curriculum Fellowship

The UMass News Office reports that University Distinguished Professor Lixin Gao of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department has collaborated with computer scientist Arun Venkataramani to land a a three-year, $1.2-million grant from the National Science Foundation to develop and test a method to improve interdomain routing. It is “the top-level protocol that holds the entire Internet together,” the two researchers explain. They add that these new routing strategies should improve fundamental robustness, security, and manageability and “benefit anyone who relies on the Internet today.” See News Office story: Using Cloud Resources to Dramatically Improve Internet Routing .

Jinglei Ping, an assistant professor in the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department (MIE) in the College of Engineering as well as in the Institute for Applied Life Sciences (IALS), has been awarded a prestigious early career award from the Young Investigator Research Program (YIP) in the Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR) to study “Multiscale Electrical Mapping of Biosystems.” Ping is one of 40 U.S. scientists and engineers chosen to receive the YIP grants for 2020.

Professor Blair Perot of the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department is the principal investigator on a two-year, $1.18-million ARPA-E grant to support the creation of pioneering software for simulating offshore wind turbines. The new software will leverage an existing user animation interface called Blender to replace the currently used CAD software, which tends to have a steep learning curve, is commercial and expensive, and has a framework geared towards static views and design, not the complex, real-world dynamics of offshore wind turbines.

Nearly 300 students from 26 regional schools in grades nine to 12 attended Women in Engineering and Computing Career Day on October 28. In addition, organizers expected industry professionals from eight corporations to attend along with 35 to 40 teachers and counselors. “Both engineering and computing are degrees that can really change the world, so we are really trying to provide [the young women] with role models that they can see themselves in and see themselves being that person in a few years,” said Paula Rees, the assistant dean for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. See WWLP video and News Office release.

Sophomore Jaydeep Radadiya of the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department was the recipient of the 2019 Undergraduate Excellence Award presented by the Safety Research Using Simulation (SAFER-SIM) Tier 1 University Transportation Center. The award was based "upon accomplishments in three areas: technical merit and research capability, academic performance, and leadership." 

According to the Construction Equipment Guide, Aikaterini Deliali, a Ph.D. student in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department, received the 2019 Future Industry Spotlight Award from the American Road & Transportation Builders Association Foundation at its national convention in September. This award recognizes students enrolled in undergraduate or graduate studies at a U.S. college or university who have achieved an outstanding academic record and demonstrated extraordinary leadership skills within and outside of the academic environment.

Christopher Merola, a PhD student of Associate Professor Marinos Vouvakis, won the Best Student Paper Award at the 2019 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Phased Arrays Systems and Technology conference. His paper was entitled: “An RF beamforming Architecture for UWB continuous Time-Delay Control” by Merola and Vouvakis.

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