A Year in Review

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Join the College of Engineering as we take a look back at 2016 and the extraordinary work we have accomplished.

With another year come and gone, the College of Engineering at NC State takes a look back at the exciting year of research and accomplishments that occurred in 2016. From the approval of the Connect NC Bond that provides funding for the Engineering Building Oval to the student population in the College growing to over 10,000, 2016 has proven to be a great year.

The Connect NC Bond

On March 15, North Carolinians voted to pass the Connect NC Bond referendum that supports investments in the university and community college systems, the National Guard, state parks, and water and sewer systems. The passing of the bond ensured that $77 million in public funding is available to build the Engineering Building Oval – the next step in the College’s move to Centennial Campus that will serve as a home for the Department of Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering and the Edward P. Fitts Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, the dean’s administrative offices and the NC State Engineering Foundation. The College is currently raising the remaining funds necessary to make Engineering Building Oval a reality.

NC State and UNC Pembroke establish dual degree program

On July 12, NC State Chancellor Dr. Randy Woodson and UNC Pembroke Chancellor Dr. Robin Gary Cummings signed the official partnership agreement establishing a joint undergraduate degree program that will allow students to spend three years at UNC Pembroke and two years at NC State and graduate with bachelor’s degrees from both institutions.

New site for NSF Center in phase II

NC State was selected as a new site for the existing National Science Foundation (NSF) Center for Hybrid Multicore Productivity Research (CHMPR) Industry/University Cooperative Research Centers (I/UCRC). The new NC State site, which opened on September 1, is hosted in the Laboratory for Science of Technologies for End-to-End Enablement of Data (STEED) in the Department of Computer Science in the College of Engineering. The new site’s main goal will be to conduct trans-disciplinary translational science and research of enabling better decision making in presence of big data.

Lead in NSF Program

NC State and North Carolina Central University launched an NSF-funded program to recruit and train researchers in new ways of applying advanced statistical tools to physical science data. The five-year program, called Data-Enabled Science and Engineering of Atomic Structure (SEAS), is supported by a $2.5 million grant from NSF.

NSF-Funded Center formed for advanced electronics through machine learning

NC State, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Georgia Tech are forming a center that aims to speed up design and verification of microelectronic circuits and systems, reducing development costs and time-to-market for manufacturers of microelectronic products, especially integrated circuits. The center is funded for five years through the NSF’s I/UCRC program and by the industrial members of the center.

NC State Ranks #1 in the nation in Computer Science female faculty

In a report by the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE), NC State ranks #1 in the nation in number of female tenure-track/tenured faculty in Department of Computer Science in Colleges of Engineering. The department currently has 20 female faculty and several other female adjuncts faculty.

Eight faculty members earn NSF CAREER Awards

The NSF CAREER award is one of the most prestigious awards in support of junior faculty members who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations. The recipients from the College in 2016 include: Drs. Alper Bozkurt, Chih-Hao Chang, Hsiao-Ying Shadow Huang, Edgar Lobaton, Brina Montoya, Brendan O’Connor, Srikanth Patala, and Veronica Augustyn.

NC State selected for new manufacturing innovation hub

Faculty members in the College are helping lead the Southeast hub for a new Smart Manufacturing Innovation Institute (SMII) that aims to spur technological innovation to improve the efficiency of advanced manufacturing in the U.S. The new institute will be led by the Smart Manufacturing Leadership Coalition, based in Los Angeles, Calif., in partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy. NC State will be the home of one of five regional hubs.

National recognition

  • Alper Bozkurt, an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering, was named one of Popular Science’s“Brilliant 10” for his work establishing the foundations of the “internet of bionic things” in areas ranging from human-animal communication to insect biobots to human health monitoring devices.
  • Zhen Gu, an assistant professor in the Joint UNC/NC State Department of Biomedical Engineering, was named a 2016 Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowin chemistry.
  • Joseph DeSimone, William R. Kenan Jr. Distinguished Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at NC State and Chancellor’s Eminent Professor of Chemistry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, received the National Medal of Technology and Innovation from President Barack Obama.
  • Engineering Dean Dr. Louis A. Martin-Vega assumed the presidency of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) at the society’s annual conference on June 29.
  • Elizabeth Parry, a partnership coordinator and instructor in First Year Engineering with The Engineering Place, was recognized by ASEE for her work improving outcomes at a Raleigh elementary school, receiving a best paper award from ASEE’s Precollege Division.
  • B. Jayant Baliga, Ruben Carbonell, and Frances S. Ligler were named Fellows by the National Academy of Inventors.

Student Success

  • Gilbert Castillo, chemical and biomolecular engineering Ph. D candidate, took home first place and Res Orgut, civil, construction and environmental engineering Ph.D. candidate, placed second in NC State’s Graduate School’s 3 Minute Thesis competition.
  • Sam Jasper, a senior and double major in textile engineeringand chemical engineering, was named an Astronaut Scholar and received a $10,000 scholarship from the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation (ASF) for the 2016-17 school year.
  • Christopher Cooper, an undergraduate student in the department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, was named a recipient of the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship for the 2015-16 year. The one-and two-year scholarships cover the cost of tuition, fees, books and room and board up to a maximum of $7,500 per year.
  • Ten students in the College of Engineering are among 31 NC State students who received 2016 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowships.