Dr. Paul Dauenhauer of the Chemical Engineering Department at the University of Massachusetts Amherst has been awarded a prized Early Career Award in Basic Energy Sciences from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). The award will provide $800,000 for five years to support his research on “Natural and Primary Catalysts for Molten Cellulose Pyrolysis to Targeted Bio‐oils.” “Our ability to provide fuels and chemicals in a sustainable manner for future generations presents the largest global challenge for reaction engineering in the 21st century,” says Dauenhauer.
Dr. Jessica D. Schiffman, who is currently a postdoctoral associate in the Environmental Engineering Program and Chemical Engineering Department at Yale University, will join the faculty of our Chemical Engineering Department in September of 2011. Before arriving at Yale, Dr. Schiffman completed her Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering at Drexel University. Dr. Schiffman has received Drexel’s Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award and was named “Best of the MatPac” based upon her graduate research.
Peter Monson, Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering and currently on sabbatical leave, has been awarded a Piercy Visiting Professorship from the Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science at the University of Minnesota. He will visit Minnesota during April and May, working with colleagues on the synthesis and characterization of new catalysts for energy efficient chemical transformations.
Senior chemical engineering student Niva Ran is the lead author of a cover story entitled “Organic single-crystal lawns” for an upcoming issue of Materials Today, the international review magazine for all researchers with an interest in materials science and technology. Her co-authors are postdoctoral scholar Qingshuo Wei and Assistant Professor Alejandro L. Briseño from the Department of Polymer Science and Engineering.
Chemical Engineering Professor William C. Conner, Jr. has won the 2011 Senior Faculty Award, and Electrical and Computer Engineering Assistant Professor Eric Polizzi has won the 2011 Barbara H. and Joseph I. Goldstein Outstanding Junior Faculty Award. They will both receive their awards at the Senior Recognition Ceremony on May 14, starting at 9:00 a.m. in the Recreation Center. Assistant Professor Marinos Vouvakis of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department was previously announced as the winner of the 2011 College Outstanding Teaching Award, and he will also receive his award at the ceremony on May 14.
T.J. (Lakis) Mountziaris, professor and head of the Chemical Engineering Department at the University of Massachusetts and director of the UMass NanoMedicine Institute, has received $25,000 from the university’s Commercial Ventures and Intellectual Property (CVIP) office to conduct experiments aimed at commercializing a new class of biological sensors that enable rapid testing of clinical samples for disease markers and environmental samples for biological contaminants.
Chemical Engineering major Dan Ganz has recently been awarded two scholarships, the Class of 1941 Humanitarian Award given by the Honors College, and the Mark Bradley and June Wispelway Scholarship given by the College of Engineering. “The two awards I have received recently, from the College of Engineering and the Commonwealth College, are a real honor,” Ganz said. “When entering UMass, I did not expect such positive opportunities to develop as a person and as a professional.”
George Huber, the Armstrong Professional Development Professor in the University of Massachusetts Amherst Chemical Engineering Department, has received $25,000 from the university’s Commercial Ventures and Intellectual Property (CVIP) office to help commercialize a “proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell technology” capable of producing renewable fuels and other chemicals from biomass, electricity, and water.
On April 7, four College of Engineering students donated their time, energy, and knowledge to the so-called “Carnival of Learning” by teaching about 55 youngsters from the John Duggan Middle School in Springfield the importance of education beyond high school. The college students, who belong to the campus chapters of the National Society of Black Engineers and Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, gave the kids a crash course in engineering by demonstrating how to extract DNA from strawberries and showing them how to build a better “mousetrap car,” solely powered by one standard-sized mousetrap.
Students from the College of Engineering have won four William F. Field Alumni Field Scholarships and two Senior Leadership Awards from the University of Massachusetts Amherst Alumni Association. The awardees represent all four departments at the college. Our Field Scholars are: Daniel Abrams, civil engineering; Zachary Brentzel, chemical engineering; To Chong, computer engineering; and Carlo Domaoan, mechanical engineering. Caitlin Bogdan, mechanical engineering and classics, and Xiaoliang Yao, industrial engineering and operations management, won Senior Leadership Awards