College of Engineering and Sciences
Discovery Through Applied Research
Obtaining more than $1.4 million in external grants and contracts for significant scholarly productivity, college faculty members continued to influence regional and national scientific communities through applied research.
Associate Professor Ruijian (Jerry) Zhang’s projects with software development company Beulah Work LLC combine internship training and real-world application in artificial intelligence. Associate Professor and 2018 PNW Outstanding Faculty Scholar Award recipient Nicoleta Tarfulea’s activity on mathematical models underlying biological systems was recognized at PNW’s annual Founder’s Day celebration. Professor Robert Kramer (Energy Efficiency and Reliability Center) continues to be recognized by municipalities for his efforts increasing street lighting efficiency.
Among others, Assistant Professor Michelle Spaulding has been part of a collaborative National Science Foundation-funded project of mammal study relating to the dawn of the Cenozoic (roughly 65 million years ago). Additionally, Associate Professor Meden Isaac-Lam’s scholarly activity focuses on synthesis of small organic molecules for medical applications. She also recently filed a provisional patent for a new compound designed for possible use in treating triple-negative breast cancers.
Technical Training And Student InitiativesThe Center for Innovation through Visualization and Simulation (CIVS), headed by Professor Chenn Zhou, received a major corporate grant to develop advanced, virtual reality safety training to enhance emergency awareness and preparedness for first responders and others. Likewise, in conjunction with the Department of Chemistry and Physics, CIVS is developing forensic science virtual crime scenes training.
At the invitation of student organizations from the College of Engineering and Sciences, representatives from General Electric, General Motors and other firms visited PNW to discuss internship and career opportunities with students. STEM majors also arranged student tours of Argonne National Laboratory and Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory. The president of PNW’s American Society of Civil Engineers student chapter, Jake Manzo, led efforts to bring the IMAX film, “Dream Big,” to PNW for a regional screening.
STEM Awareness And OutreachOur students also provided peer-to-peer outreach to area high schools through the College’s STEM on the Road program. Created by advisor and Senior Engineering Internship Coordinator William Baginski and College of Technology Laboratory Coordinator Rick Rickerson, the program facilitates high school visits and presentations by students majoring in STEM disciplines.
Through the Faculty Speaker Series, College faculty members discussed their academic disciplines during more than a dozen visits to area schools. Associate Professor Diana Underwood-Gregg and Professor David Feikes also advanced programs to improve pre-college education.
Certain to enhance education and scholarship within the College, construction of the Bioscience Innovation Building and the Engineering Design Studio began this summer on the Hammond Campus.
The College also is excited about a pending, academic program proposal in Applied Statistics; the launch of professionally-oriented tracks in Health Studies; and the prospect of new programs in the growing School of Engineering.