Carnegie Mellon University

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January 26, 2012

Personal Mention

Nadine Aubry, the Raymond J. Lane Distinguished Professor and head of Carnegie Mellon's Mechanical Engineering Department, has been awarded the distinction of fellow of the American Institute for Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) for her outstanding work in the field of aerospace through her pioneering contributions to fluid dynamics. In addition to her work on turbulence and transitional flows with applications for improved and more efficient flights, Aubry proposed judicious microfluidic solutions which, because of their reduced weight, size and energy consumption, are appealing to the field of aerospace. "At a time when aviation has become an inherent part of our life and our economy, it is crucial to continue making technological advances whether those address reduced fuel consumption or sustainable fuel alternatives," Aubry said. Read the full story.

Christopher Bettinger is the recipient of the prestigious National Academy of Sciences (NAS) Award for Initiatives in Research for his innovative work on advanced materials for next-generation implanted medical devices. Supported by Alcatel-Lucent Bell Labs, the NAS Award for Initiatives in Research recognizes "innovative young scientists and encourages research likely to lead toward new capabilities for human benefit." Bettinger, an assistant professor in the departments of Materials Science and Engineering and Biomedical Engineering, will receive the award, which comes with a $15,000 prize, April 30 at the NAS' 149th annual meeting in Washington, D.C. Read more about Bettinger.

Edmund M. Clarke, the FORE Systems University Professor of Computer Science and of Electrical and Computer Engineering, has received an honorary doctorate from the Vienna University of Technology in Vienna, Austria. The award ceremony was part of the opening of the new Vienna Center for Logic and Algorithms, which will promote international scientific collaboration in several high priority research areas, including Clarke’s specialty, verification of hardware and software designs. “Edmund M. Clarke is among the leading computer scientists of our times,” the event program stated. “Clarke’s scientific vision of systems engineering by formal logical analysis has become an important research area of computer science in Austria.” Clarke is a pioneer in the field of Model Checking, an automated method for finding design errors in computer hardware and software. Clarke’s role in creating Model Checking was recognized by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) with the 2007 Turing Award, the most prestigious award in computing.

Following a national search, Carnegie Mellon has named Charles A. Kennedy its new chief investment officer (CIO). Kennedy succeeds Edward J. Grefenstette, who resigned in March 2010 to become CIO of The Dietrich Charitable Trusts. Kennedy has served as CMU's interim CIO since Grefenstette's departure. He joined the university as senior investment manager in December 2007, and since then has helped to develop the university's investment program. "Our national search turned up many fine candidates, but Chuck Kennedy rose to the top," said CMU Trustee David Shapira, head of the CIO search committee and chair of the board of trustees' Investment Committee. "Chuck did an outstanding job as interim CIO and his performance, coupled with his knowledge and understanding of the Carnegie Mellon culture made him the right choice." Read more about Kennedy.

Mechanical Engineering Professor Philip LeDuc has been named a fellow by the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE) for outstanding contributions to the field of cell and molecular biomechanics and bioengineering. A formal recognition ceremony is scheduled for Feb. 20 at the AIMBE's 21st annual meeting at the Grand Hyatt in Washington, D.C. The AIMBE's College of Fellows comprise the top 2 percent of medical and biological engineers in the country, including engineering and medical school chairs, research directors, innovators and successful entrepreneurs. LeDuc is one of the newest fellows who continue to help revolutionize medicine and related fields to enhance the lives of people worldwide. Read more about LeDuc.

Roy Beebe, longtime gardener with Facilities Management Services, has retired from the university. His last working day at CMU was Friday, Jan. 13. Beebe was a CMU employee for 34 years. He received the Andy Award for Dedication in 2004.

Shushan Klein, Desktop Support Program (DSP) assistant manager, will be moving back to her hometown of San Diego in mid-February. Her last day at CMU will be Friday, Feb. 10.  Klein started with DSP in 2007 as a DSP consultant, supporting the Campus Services Division. One year later, she was promoted to team lead, and in 2010 was promoted to assistant manager in charge of DSP operations and the supervision of the DSP consulting team. “Shushan has always been popular with customers, thanks to her organizational skills, great communication, and of course, her trademark dry wit,” said DSP Senior Manager J. Alex Lang.  

Jeremy Ficca, associate professor of architecture and head of the Pittsburgh firm Ficca Architecture, was featured in Architect, the magazine of the American Institute of Architects, as one of the AIA’s “Fab Four” in digital fabrication, “a process that could affect the way everything is made, from lighting fixtures to heating systems.” The magazine talks about Ficca’s use of robots in the process and notes one of his class projects in which he asked students to use robots to form rubber castings and bend metal.  Read the story at

English Department Ph.D. candidate Heather Steffen, and Modern Languages Ph.D. candidate Yun (Helen) Zhao have been selected co-winners of the 2012 Dietrich College Graduate Student Teaching Award. The annual award recognizes excellence, dedication and innovation in teaching.  Read more at