Innovation On Display From MSU Engineering Grad Students

EAST LANSING — Michigan State University graduate students are developing innovative solutions to improve health and safety, from redesigning footwear to reduce ankle injuries to creating transparent solar panels that could turn windows into energy collectors.

The trending ideas of more than 300 graduate students will be featured by the MSU College of Engineering at the annual Engineering Graduate Research Symposium on Thursday, April 9. The event is open to the public from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the MSU Breslin Center.

Katy Luchini Colbry, director for graduate initiatives in the College of Engineering, coordinates the MSU Engineering Graduate Research Symposium. She said the symposium includes presentations by the departmental nominees for the Fitch Beach Award for Outstanding Graduate Student Research. Each department nominates one doctoral student. Awards are based on a review of students’ academic and professional records and on an oral presentation of their research. Awardees receive a stipend from this endowed award, along with a certificate and a medal to be worn at graduation.

The 2015 Fitch H. Beach Award nominees are:
• Keith Button: Footwear Design Affects Ankle Injury: Experimental and Computational Studies, Department of Mechanical Engineering
• Mohannad Z. Naser: Response of Fire Exposed Steel Girders under Combined Effect of Flexure and Shear, Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering
• Sean Woznicki: Development of a comprehensive framework to assess the impacts of climate change on stream health, Department of Biosystems Engineering
• Jianguo Zhao: Biologically Inspired Approach for Robot Design and Control, Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering
• Yimu Zhao: Transparent Solar Panel, Department of Chemical Engineering & Materials Science
• Muhammad Shahzad: Statistical and Learning Algorithms for the Design, Analysis, Measurement, and Modeling of Networking and Security Systems, Department of Computer Science & Engineering

In addition, nine PhD candidates will be honored as the Outstanding Graduate Student in their engineering program; these awardees receive a certificate, stipend, and medal to be worn at graduation.

The symposium also includes the presentation of the MSUFCU Research Translation Award. Judges review research posters submitted to the symposium and award $2,000 for first place and $500 for second place to the student presenters who best communicate the commercial application of their research and create posters that spark conversations with potential industry collaborators. The judges are industry representatives.

To review abstracts of the poster presenters, visit:
Biosystems Engineering 
Chemical Engineering 
Civil Engineering 
Computer Science 
Electrical Engineering 
Environmental Engineering 
Materials Science 
Mechanical Engineering 

The symposium schedule on April 9 is:
• 8-9 a.m.: Registration, Continental Breakfast, Poster Set-Up
• 9-9:15 a.m.: Welcome by Dean Karen Klomparens, MSU Graduate School
• 9:15-10:45 a.m.: Fitch H. Beach Research Award Nominee Presentations
• 11-11:45 a.m.: Research Poster Session 1; authors will be available to discuss research from Biosystems Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Electrical Engineering and Materials Science
• 11:45 a.m.–12:30 p.m.: Research Poster Session 2; authors will be available to discuss research posters from Civil Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Computer Science and Mechanical Engineering
• 12:45-2:15 p.m.: Networking Lunch & Awards Ceremony
• 2:15-2:45 p.m.: Keynote Address: The “Accidental Career” – Lessons for Post Graduate Life by Brian M. Kent, PhD
• 2:45-5 p.m.: Career Connections dessert reception

The symposium is sponsored in part by the MSU Federal Credit Union, Dewpoint, the Grand Traverse Pie Company, and Bell’s Greek Pizza.

Questions can be directed to Katy Luchini Colbry, or (517) 432-1064.

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