Materials Science and Engineering Alumni News
Arun Luykx (B.S. '07, electrical engineering and M.S. '10, materials science and engineering) was recently interviewed by the Financial Times about his journey from an engineering education at the Clark School to working on a masters degree in general management at the Vlerick Leuven Gent Management School in Belgium while planning to launch his own magazine. In the story, Luykx explains why he feels engineers are good candidates for management positions and entrepreneurial endeavors, and what his business school experience has been like. Read "Engineering success" on the Financial Times' web site »
Hyunmin Yi (Ph.D. '03, chemical engineering) has been promoted to Associate Professor in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering at Tufts University. At Maryland, Yi was advised by Fischell Department of Bioengineering professor and chair William E. Bentley, and later worked as a postdoctoral research associate for Department of Materials Science and Engineering professor Gary Rubloff.
Adam Taff (B.S. '04, nuclear engineering) joined HF Financial in Charlotte, North Carolina, a General Agency of Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual), as a Financial Services Professional. Taff holds a MBA from George Mason University, and prior to joining HF Financial worked in the Washington Navy Yard.
Former Fischell Fellow Dan Janiak (B.S. '04 and Ph.D '09) has joined the staff of DFJ Mercury, a seed-stage venture capital firm based in Houston, Tx., specializing in technology tranfer and incubation. Read DFJ Mercury's press release »
Olugbenga Famodu (B.S. '95, chemical engineering; M.S. '04 and Ph.D. '05, materials science and engineering) was featured in a story called "ChEs & EnvEs find work in many fields" in the August/September issue of Diversity/Careers in Engineering & Information Technology, about the variety of career options open to chemical and environmental engineers. Famodu, who is currently a senior process engineer at Intel in Hillsboro, Or., discussed some of the major influences on his educational and career paths, including membership in the Black Engineers Society (a chartered chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers) and the Clark School's Center for Minorities in Science and Engineering. While at Maryland he was the recipient of two National Science Foundation scholarships, the Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation and the Sloan. Read the Story on D/C in E & IT's web site»
José Reyes Jr. (M.S. '84 and Ph.D. '86, nuclear engineering) is the head of the nuclear engineering program at Oregon State University and CTO of NuScale Power. OregonLive.com profiled his current efforts to design the next generation of nuclear power plants. Read More »
Shenqiang Ren (Ph.D. '09), formerly advised by Professor Manfred Wuttig, received a 2009 Chinese Government Award for Outstanding Students Abroad. He was one of 130 current and former Chinese Ph.D. students in the U.S. to receive the prestigious, merit-based honor. Dr. Ren currently works at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) as a postdoctoral associate involved in developing third- and fourth-generation bulk heterojunction (BHJ) solar cells.
Maeling Tapp (B.S. '08) tells us she can hardly believe her second year in graduate school is coming to an end. She has successfully completed her proposal defense and has been admitted to Ph.D. candidacy at the Georgia Institute of Technology. She presented her research in a poster session at the Society for Biomaterials conference held in Seattle in April. "It was a great experience being able to share and discuss my work with others and to see the diverse areas being pursued in the world of biomaterials," she says. Maeling will be presenting her work again at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md. in June.
Gerry Cauley (M.S. '80, nuclear engineering) was named President and Chief Executive Officer of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC), which works to ensure the reliability of the continent's bulk power system through monitoring, assessment, education of industry personnel, and the creation and enforcement of standards. His tenure began on January 1, 2010. "I am looking forward to working with NERC's stakeholders in industry and government to continue the progress that's already been made toward our mutual goal of building a lasting and successful self-regulatory model," Cauley is quoted as saying in a recent NERC press release, "We have many opportunities ahead of us, notably including continued focus on cyber security and other emerging reliability issues....I'm eager to dive in and get down to work." More »
Wei Lei (Ph.D. '06) works at Novellus Systems, a leading supplier of semiconductor manufacturing equipment. He has developed and transferred to manufacturing a new atomic layer deposition process for WN layers to replace Ti/TiN in advanced process, including high volume manufacturing for 45nm DRAM/flash devices. The work is published in the Advanced Metallization Conference 2008. Download a PDF about the work »
Sebastian Engelmann (Ph.D. '08) has published his first book, Plasma-Surface Interactions of Advanced Photoresist Systems. The work, based on his research at the Laboratory for Plasma Processing of Materials, discusses improved methods of nanostructure manufacturing using plasma etching technology. More »
Maeling Tapp (B.S. '08) has received a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, the oldest and one of the most competitive of its kind. The award includes a three-year annual stipend of $30,000, a $10,500 cost of education allowance for tuition and fees at an accredited U.S. or foreign university, and a one-time $1,000 travel allowance. Tapp is currently pursuing her Ph.D. at the Georgia Institute of Technology, where she is working on the design of an implantable biomaterial to be used in reconstructive surgeries for ligaments and tendons. Her proposed shape memory hydrogel polymer network could improve soft-tissue reattachment procedures by providing more effective mechanical and biological fixation.
Walter Chappas (M.S. '77 and Ph.D. '79, nuclear engineering) has been promoted to Chief Technology Officer at PetroBeam, Inc., a developer of high energy electron beam processing techniques used to upgrade heavy oil and bitumen. A leader in the fields of radiation chemistry and radiation processing, he has been a consultant to the United Nation's International Atomic Energy Agency and a technical advisor to the governments of Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Sri Lanka, and Ecuador. Before his career in industry, Chappas worked at UMD in the 1980s, serving as the Director of the Electron Linear Accelerator Facility, the Associate Director of the Laboratory for Radiation and Polymer Science, and the Director for Radiation Facilities.
Kevin Greenaugh (Ph.D. '98, nuclear Engineering), Director of the Office of Military Application and Stockpile Operations of the National Nuclear Security Administration, and part-time Howard University professor, was the subject of an article titled "The World's Nuclear Guardian" featured in U.S. Black Engineer and Information Technology, Vol. 32 No. 3. He discussed the importance of deterrence as well as the benefits to society that have come from the development of nuclear weapons, including supercomuters capable of analyzing energy needs and tracking natural disasters, and the design of peaceful applications of nuclear technology.
Sebastian Engelmann (Ph.D. '08) is working in the Reactive Ion Etching (RIE) group in the department of Advanced Materials and Process Science in the IBM Research Division at the T.J. Watson Research Center in Yorktown Heights, N.Y. Sebastian will work on developing plasma etching processes to support current and future research projects for exploratory device research beyond 15 nm technology node and/or beyond CMOS era. He can be reached at email@example.com. "Guess I am continuing to follow in Professor Oehrlein's footsteps!" he told us.
Janet B. Quinn (Ph.D. '00), 58, passed away on July 19, 2008. She was a project leader at the American Dental Association Paffenbarger Research Center, where she specialized in dental fractography, mechanical testing, and dental restoration failure analysis. Prior to joining the ADA, she was a consultant at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, where she conducted ceramic testing programs for materials including airplane window glass and ceramic fibers. Her work on fracture energy measurements of single crystals set new brittleness parameters and earned her an American Ceramic Society Engineering Ceramics Division First Prize for Technical Presentation. She was also a ceramics engineer at the U.S. Army's Materials Testing Laboratory in Watertown, Ma. Outside of the lab, Quinn was a professional Middle Eastern dance instructor who taught students in Boston, Washington, D.C., France, and Germany.
Claudio Filippone (Ph.D. '96, nuclear engineering) has been named the Senior Director of Nuclear Technology Analysis for Virginia-based Thorium Power, Ltd., a company that develops non-proliferative nuclear fuel technology and provides comprehensive advisory services for emerging nuclear programs with an emphasis on transparency, non-proliferation, safety and operational excellence. In a recent press release, Thorium describes Filippone as a "nuclear industry stalwart." More »
Nagarajan "Nagy" Valanoor (Ph.D. '01) is tenured academic staff at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia, where he holds an Australian Research Fellowship, awarded by the Australian Research Council. He continues to work in ferroelectrics and electronic oxides, areas of interest he picked up while earning his doctorate. He also still collaborates with researchers at Maryland, especially Professor Takeuchi's research group. At UNSW he has established advanced SPM and thin film capabilities, and his research has focused on two key issues: size scaling ferroelectric thin films, and the synthesis of Pb-free, environmentally sustainable piezoceramics. These programs are funded by Australian Research Council's Discovery Project.
Nagy invites fellow Materials Terps to Sydney, where weekends are best spent having barbecues (or "barbies" as they're known) on white sandy beaches in the company of fantastic Aussie wines.
Michael Figueroa, Matthew Castille, and Maxwell Grace (all B.S. '07) were honored at the Clark School's annual Honors and Awards Ceremony. More »
Department Recognizes Exceptional Undergraduates: Luncheon recognizes achievements and contributions. More »
Dick Duffey (Ph.D.'56), former professor and founder of Maryland's nuclear reactor project, died on November 10 in North Manchester, Indiana. He was 89. More »
Ralph G. Leitner (Ph.D. '67, nuclear engineering), an environmental consultant for Johns Hopkins University, was recently featured in a Frederick News-Post article about high levels flouride in found in the groundwater of a farm bordering the Alcoa Eastalco Works in Adamston, Md. Read the Story »
Timothy C. Bertch (Ph.D., nuclear engineering), has been named the incoming director of San Diego's wastewater department.
Team of Maryland Grads at Intel
Four recent Ph.D. graduates of the MSE graduate program will continue to see each other at Intel in Chandler, Arizona. Zhengkun Ma, Hongxia Feng, Yuhong Cai and Ladan Mohaddes Ardabili have all accepted positions at the facility which specializes in electronic packaging. They work in the same building but on different projects. Olugbenga Famodu has also joined Intel, but he is working a little farther north in Portland, Oregon. He received his Ph.D. in 2005.
Dr. Ma is working on failure analysis for electronic packaging materials to support pathfinding projects which are for applications in the next few years. Dr. Feng is focusing on the use of polymers for packaging of microelectronic devices. Dr. Cai is a pathfinding engineer, designing and developing a low density integration (LDI) semiconductor product based on the future market trend. She specifically is working on two projects: Stacked Package-on-Package (PoP) Design and WLAN product design. Dr. Mohaddes will work in the research and pathfinding sector to develop new electronic packaging methods. Dr. Famodu is working in the Thin Films group on the fabrication of semiconductor processing by using high purity metal sputtering. He is also part of the exciting new manufacturing process development, including the transition to 300 mm (12 in) wafers, as well as the migration from 0.13 micron to 90 nanometer technology. We wish them luck in their future endeavors!
Ouyang Receives Award
Jun Ouyang received his Ph.D. from the Department of Materials Science and Engineering in 2005 under the direction of Prof. Alex Roytburd. He recently received a 2005 Chinese Government Award for Outstanding Students Abroad. He was one of 53 current and former Chinese Ph.D. students in the U.S. and the only one at the University of Maryland receiving this prestigious, merit-based award. Dr. Ouyang currently works at Seagate Technology in Minnesota involved in developing new high density consumer electronic data storage.
All the World's a Stage
Two years ago, Chen Kung had just received his Bachelor's degree in Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Maryland. Now, he is working in China for Ford Motor Compnay in their China Sourcing Office.
During his senior year, he received a job offer from Ford Motor Company to join their Ford College Graduate (FCG) program. Ford's FCG program consists of five developmental assignments throughout various areas of the company with each assignment lasting 6 months. Participants in FCG can also elect to pursue an advanced degree while working. Chen states that "the FCG program was the transition I needed from school to the 'real world' so I accepted their job offer. I'm now on my third assignment at Ford and am pursuing a Masters of Science in Industrial Engineering at Purdue University-West Lafayette."
His first assignment at Ford was as a corrosion engineer for their North American operations. He learned about general corrosion science, accelerated weather testing, and the importance of tetanus shots. Following corrosion, Chen joined Ford's Asia Pacific and Africa's (AP&A) technology deployment group. His responsibilities in AP&A included engineering parts for experimental research projects and implementing materials management systems to ensure that their vehicles meet global environmental standards. Currently, he is on an international assignment in China. He states that it is an exciting time to be in China. He has been mentoring and training newly hired employees and assisting in material selections for the parts Ford is sourcing. His next assignment may be in the area of hybrid vehicle and fuel cell design.
Please feel free to email him if you have any comments or questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
There is Always More to Learn
About half of the graduates of the undergraduate MSE program go onto graduate school either immediately following graduation or as they pursue careers.
Joanna Meador graduated in Spring 2005 and went directly to graduate school at Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh, PA. She is enrolled in the Ph.D. program working on a project exploring Praseodymium Calcium Manganate (Pr0.7Ca0.3MnO3) as a possible material for storage material based on resistive switching. Resistive switching is being able to obtain two different resistances based on applied voltage. Joanna is happy to correspond about life as a graduate student with interested undergraduates. Her email address is email@example.com.
Kunal Thaker also went directly to graduate school after graduation. He attends the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is working on his Masters degree on a project involving the design and process control/characterization of hot micro-embossing. He reports that this is a promising method being investigated for the fabrication of polymer-based micro-devices (micro-fluidics and micro-optics). Kunal will graduate in June 2006 and will join the DC based consulting firm Booz-Allen-Hamilton.
Adding to the Knowledge Base
While many of our students go to work in industry or for government labs after graduate school, some decide to remain in school, but this time as faculty members. Mutsuhiro Shima received his Ph.D. in 1998, was a guest researcher at the National Institute of Standards and Technology and completed a post doctorate at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is an Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He teaches both graduate and undergraduate courses.
Alumnus Receives Tenure
Pamir Alpay received his Ph.D. in 1999 under the direction of Prof. Alex Roytburd. He is a MSE faculty member at the University of Connecticut and was recently promoted from Assistant to Associate Professor with tenure.
Several recent graduates have taken positions at Micron Technologies in Manassas, Virginia. Chandler McCann, Erin Flanagan, Adam Haughton and Bryan Orf will join the company, which is a leader in advanced semiconductors and flash memory devices.