Thursday, April 19, 2018

Story shared from Penn State News

Lee Kump, dean of the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences, recognized more than 60 students and fellow faculty at the college’s annual Wilson Awards Banquet, held on April 15, 2018. Image: Penn State

The College of Earth and Mineral Sciences (EMS) celebrated exceptional students and faculty for their academic excellence, service and leadership during its annual Wilson Awards Banquet held Sunday, April 15. The awards banquet is the college’s annual celebration of faculty and student accomplishments and is named in honor of Matthew and Anne Wilson, major benefactors of the college.

Dean Lee Kump recognized more than 60 students and fellow faculty with awards.

“This annual event provides an opportunity for the college to recognize the hard work and accomplishments of our faculty and students,” said Kump.

This year’s recipients are listed below.

Celebrating excellence in research awards

Wilson Award for Excellence in Research

The Wilson Award for Excellence in Research is the college’s highest research honor. This award is given in recognition of scholarly or creative excellence represented by a single contribution or a series of contributions around a coherent theme. The contribution may be original basic research or may represent the application of knowledge in the creation of a process or device useful to society. This year’s recipient is:

  • Russell Johns, professor of petroleum and natural gas engineering

E. Willard and Ruby S. Miller Faculty Fellowship

The E. Willard and Ruby S. Miller Faculty Fellowship was created to support faculty of exceptional creativity, who propose highly innovative approaches to major contemporary challenges in the earth, energy and material sciences. This year’s recipient is:

  • Jillian Goldfarb, assistant professor of energy engineering, selected for her proposal “Re-Engineering the Integrated Biorefinery for Sustainable Fuels and Nanomaterials”

George H. Deike, Jr. Research Grant

The H. Deike, Jr. Research Grant is awarded in support of an innovative research project. This year’s recipient is:

  • Guido Cervone, associate professor of geoinformatics and associate director of the Institute for CyberScience, selected for his proposal “A CyberScience Solution for Imaging Spectroscopy using Deep Learning”

Wilson Research Initiation Grant

The Wilson Research Initiation Grant is intended to jump-start the research of a new tenure-track faculty member. This year’s recipients are:

  • Robert Hickey, assistant professor of materials science and engineering, selected for his proposal “Nanostructured Polymeric Materials for Hydrogen Gas Storage using Frustrated Lewis Pairs”
  • Mohammad Rezaee, assistant professor of mining engineering, selected for his proposal “Feasibility Study of Recovering Rare Earth Elements from Coal Waste Streams Through an Integrated Bio-Extraction Process”
  • Tieyuan Zhu, assistant professor of geosciences, selected for his proposal “Quantifying Subsurface CO2 Leakage Hazards Using Seismic Coda Waves”

Celebrating excellence in teaching awards

Wilson Award for Excellence in Teaching

This award is given in recognition of outstanding teaching represented by performance in a single course of instruction or a series of contributions around a coherent theme. The contribution may represent application of knowledge in a traditional classroom setting, field course or online education. This year’s recipient is:

  • Matthew Kumjian, assistant professor of meteorology

G. Montgomery and Marion Hall Mitchell Award for Innovative Teaching

This award was created in 1998 to recognize faculty members in the college who use innovative teaching techniques in their courses.

This year’s recipient is:

  • Mort Webster, associate professor of energy engineering

George H. K. Schenck Teaching Assistant Award

This award was created to honor and to recognize a graduate student in the college who has performed his or her responsibility as a graduate teaching assistant in an exemplary manner. This year’s recipient is:

  • Carolynne Hultquist, doctoral student in geography

Celebrating excellence in service awards

Wilson Award for Outstanding Service

Created in 1999, the Wilson Service Award honors exceptional achievement in service and is given in recognition of meritorious service represented by a single contribution or a series of contributions around a coherent theme. This year’s recipient is:

  • Andrew Nyblade, professor of geosciences

Faculty Advising Award

Created in 2013, the Faculty Advising Award honors exceptional achievement in the advising of undergraduate students; the contribution may represent any facet of strong academic advising, including educational planning, exposure to research opportunities, identification of internships and other aspects of advising. This year’s recipient is:

  • Luis Ayala, William A. Fustos Family Professor of Energy and Mineral Engineering and associate head for graduate education, John and Willie Leone Family Department of Energy and Mineral Engineering

Faculty Mentoring Award

The Faculty Mentoring Award honors a faculty member who invests in the success of others, whether it is a new faculty member, a student or a staff member. This award recognizes the generous contribution of time and energy it takes to mentor in teaching, research and service. This year’s recipient is:

  • Johannes Verlinde, professor of meteorology and associate head for the graduate programs, Department of Meteorology and Atmospheric Science

25-Year Service Awards

  • Susan Trolier-McKinstry, Steward S. Flaschen Professor of Materials Science
  • Jenni Evans, professor of meteorology and director of the Institute for CyberScience

Special academic recognition awards

Paul F. Robertson Award for EMS Breakthrough of the Year

This award was created in 2012 with support from a generous gift by EMS alumnus Paul F. Robertson. This award is given for singular research or teaching achievements communicated in one or a small series of articles, reports or presentations. Qualifying breakthroughs may be in research or in the scholarship of teaching. This year’s recipient, honored for his breakthrough research on transparent conductors, is:

  • Roman Engel-Herbert, associate professor of materials science and engineering

Charles L. Hosler Alumni Scholar Medal

The Charles L. Hosler Alumni Scholar Medal was established in 1992 to recognize the achievements of alumni who have made outstanding contributions to the development of science through research, teaching or administrative leadership with emphasis given to those who have earned doctoral degrees. This year’s recipient is:

  • Turgay Ertekin, professor emeritus of petroleum and natural gas engineering

Celebrating junior faculty accomplishments

Gladys Snyder Junior Faculty Grants

The Gladys Snyder Junior Faculty Grants are given for the development of new courses or the improvement of current offerings, for travel to professional meetings, to broaden the studies of junior faculty members and/or to recognize significant contributions in research efforts.

This year’s recipients are:

  • Tanushree Choudhury, research associate, 2D Crystal Consortium, selected for her proposal “Site Specific Growth of Transition Metal Dichalcogenides”Student Achievement Awards
  • Robert Hickey, assistant professor of materials science and engineering, selected for his proposal “Colloids and Hydrogels Created from Self-Assembled Amphiphilic Block Polymers”
  • Lauren Zarzar, assistant professor of materials science and engineering, selected for her proposal “Development of Fluid Intelligence in STEM Education and Research”

Student achievement awards

Jay M. and Katherine Definis Award for Outstanding Student Leadership

Established in 2005, this award honors outstanding student leadership abilities within the student organizations of the college. This year’s recipient is:

  • Jennafer Hakun, Energy Engineering

Ellen Steidle Achievement Award

Established in 1953 by Dean Edward Steidle to honor the memory of his wife, this award recognizes students who have been active in advancing the welfare and improvement of the college. This year’s recipients are:

  • Senior: Victoria Christensen, Materials Science and Engineering
  • Junior: Vivian Rennie, Meteorology and Atmospheric Science

Edward Steidle Memorial Scholar Award

Established in 1981 to honor Edward Steidle, dean of the college from 1929 to 1953, this award broadens the educational opportunities for EMS students. This year’s recipient is:

  • Madeline Nyblade, Geosciences

GEMS Diamond Award

Established in 2006, the GEMS Diamond Award grants a lifetime membership in the Penn State Alumni Association to a graduating student who is found to have the most well-rounded involvement and achievement in both the University and community environment during his or her student experience while in the college. This year’s recipient is:

  • Victoria Christensen, Materials Science and Engineering

Student Marshal

The student marshal designation is given to the most accomplished graduate overall. This year’s student marshal is:

  • Fatima Altarrah, Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering, Minor in Energy Business and Finance

Science Honor Marshal

The award is for the top-ranking graduate in a science discipline. This year’s science honor marshal is:

  • Madeline Nyblade, Geosciences, Schreyer Scholar

Earth and Mineral Sciences Academy for Global Experience (EMSAGE)

Established in 2009, the EMSAGE program helps students develop as communicators and collaborators and prepares them to be effective leaders in their disciplines and responsible global citizens. Students may aspire to EMSAGE Laureate status by achieving notable success in scholarship, service, global literacy and experiential learning. This year’s recipients are:

  • Lara Aljuhani, Energy Business and Finance
  • Priyanka Bose, Geosciences
  • Audrey Bourne, Geosciences
  • Nicholas Buczacki, Mining Engineering
  • Paige Campbell, Meteorology and Atmospheric Science
  • Victoria Christensen, Materials Science and Engineering
  • Alexandra Colaizzi, Energy Business and Finance
  • Evan Galimberti, Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering
  • Jennafer Hakun, Energy Engineering
  • Julia Higson, Geography
  • Katie Hutton, Mining Engineering
  • Shams Joon, Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering
  • Gregory Kojadinovich II, Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering
  • Nathan Lis, Meteorology and Atmospheric Science
  • Madison Littin, Meteorology and Atmospheric Science
  • Jasmine Lomax, Meteorology and Atmospheric Science
  • Matthew Ludwig, Meteorology and Atmospheric Science
  • Benjamin Miller, Energy Business and Finance
  • Paul Mykolajtchuk, Meteorology and Atmospheric Science
  • Natasha Nagle, Geoosciences
  • Madeline Nyblade, Geoosciences 
  • William Petley, Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering
  • Evan Plumridge, Environmental Systems Engineering
  • Hannah Pohlmann, Materials Science and Engineering
  • Gwenore Pokrifka, Meteorology and Atmospheric Science
  • Catherine Pomorski, Materials Science and Engineering
  • Brandon Rothrock, Geography
  • Gina Sarkawi, Geosciences
  • William Schramm, Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering
  • Vivek Shenoy, Meteorology and Atmospheric Science
  • Joseph Skevokis, Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering
  • Jacob Sorber, Meteorology and Atmospheric Science
  • Alexander Tomoff, Meteorology and Atmospheric Science
  • Andrew Vislosky, Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering
  • Ian Wolfe, Geosciences
  • Zhiyu Zhao, Materials Science and Engineering