LTU professor wins second NSF grant for student travel to engineering event

SOUTHFIELDAhad Ali, associate professor in the A. Leon Linton Department of Mechanical, Robotics, and Industrial Engineering at Lawrence Technological University, has been awarded a $26,306 grant from the National Science Foundation to support travel and professional development for college students to attend a professional conference.

Specifically, the grant will fund travel and conference registration for student attendees at the Industrial Engineering and Operations Management World Congress on Advanced Manufacturing Technologies, being held on LTU’s campus Oct. 9-11. Community college, undergraduate, and graduate students from anywhere in the United States are eligible to apply for the funding. Preference will be given to students from underrepresented groups in engineering.

The students are encouraged to present a research paper or poster at the conference.

Ali said attending the conference will give students a unique opportunity to network with attendees from more than 30 countries, developing relationships for future research opportunities and partnerships. They’ll attend conference keynote addresses, technical sessions, and meet outstanding industry experts in the areas of advanced manufacturing, vehicle electrification, artifical intelligence in manufacturing, smart mobility, and industrial automation.

For more information or to apply for funding, students should contact Ali at

The grant comes on the heels of a similar grant Ali earned in January that allowed students to attend another IEOM conference that was held in Washington, D.C. in early June.

In the photo above, Ali, at center in tan jacket, shows off one of LTU’s industrial engineering and automation labs to industry guests on a recent visit.

Ali joined the LTU faculty in 2007 after teaching at the University of Puerto Rico-Mayaguez, the University of Toledo, and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where he earned his Ph.D. in industrial engineering. Ali also holds a Master of Science in systems and engineering management from Nanyang Technological University in Singapore and a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering from Khulna University of Engineering and Technology in Bangladesh.

At LTU, Ali is director of the Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering and Master of Science in Industrial Engineering programs and director of LTU’s Smart Manufacturing and Lean Systems Research Group. He is also faculty advisor for LTU’s IEOM Student Chapter, its Society of Manufacturing Engineers Student Chapter, and LTU’s chapter of Engineers Without Borders. His research interests include manufacturing systems, modeling, simulation, optimization, reliability, artificial intelligence, lean manufacturing, supply chain management, and logistics.

Lawrence Technological University is one of only 13 independent, technological, comprehensive doctoral universities in the United States. Located in Southfield, Mich., LTU was founded in 1932 and offers more than 100 programs through its Colleges of Architecture and Design, Arts and Sciences, Business and Information Technology, Engineering, and Health Sciences, as well as Specs@LTU as part of its growing Center for Professional Development. PayScale lists Lawrence Tech among the nation’s top 11 percent of universities for alumni salaries. Forbes and The Wall Street Journal rank LTU among the nation’s top 10 percent. U.S. News and World Report list it in the top tier of the best Midwest colleges. Students benefit from small class sizes and a real-world, hands-on, “theory and practice” education with an emphasis on leadership. Activities on Lawrence Tech’s 107-acre campus include more than 60 student organizations and NAIA varsity sports.

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