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WVU ROBOTICS Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources

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Volume 11 Issue 2


FEATURING 2014-2015

ANNUAL REPORT Statistics Endowed Professorships Chemical Engineering Civil and Environmental Engineering Freshman Engineering Industrial and Management Systems Engineering Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Mining and Industrial Extension Mining Engineering Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering Research Outreach and Recruitment







determi n ed STRONG competitive WINNING


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The Statler College mission is to prepare students for success in their professional careers; to contribute to the advancement of society through learning, discovery, extension and service; and to stimulate


WVU awarded two prestigious DOE grants to develop new methods for energy generation and storage

Story: WVU 19 Cover Robotics: Win/Place/Show named 2015 25 Patel Fulbright Scholar

economic well-being in West Virginia and the world through technical innovation, knowledge creation and educational excellence.

Dean / Eugene V. Cilento / 304.293.4157 Director, Marketing and Communications Mary C. Dillon / Design Coordinator, Marketing and Communications / J. Paige Nesbit

Annual Report

Contributing Writers / Tami Allen Bernadette Dombrowski / Heather Richardson Jake Stump / Marissa Sura

32 Statistics

Photography / Greg Ellis / Erin Irwin / Nick Morales J. Paige Nesbit / Brian Persinger / Raymond Thompson

34 Endowed Professorships 36 Chemical Engineering 38 Civil and Environmental Engineering

30 Virginia University 58 West Foundation’s 2015

2014-2015 Annual Report

Outstanding Philanthropy awards

40 Freshman Engineering 42 Industrial and Management Systems Engineering 44 Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering 46 Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering 48 Mining and Industrial Extension 50 Mining Engineering 52 Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering 54 Research 56 Outreach and Recruitment

Address West Virginia University / Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources PO Box 6070 / Morgantown, WV 26506-6070 Change of Address WVU Foundation / PO Box 1650 Morgantown, WV 26504-1650 Fax: 304.284.4001 / e-mail: Engineering West Virginia is published twice each year, in spring and fall, for the alumni, friends and other supporters of the WVU Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources. Copyright ©2015 by the WVU Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources. Brief excerpts of articles in this publication may be reprinted without a request for permission if EngineeringWV is acknowledged in print as the source. Contact the director for permission to reprint entire articles. The WVU Board of Governors is the governing body of WVU. The Higher Education Policy Commission in West Virginia is responsible for developing, establishing and overseeing the implementation of a public policy agenda for the state’s four-year colleges and universities. West Virginia University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Institution.














When it comes to energy research – the kind that

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will transform the country’s economic, security and environmental outlook – the nation needs more than first downs. It needs touchdowns, and West Virginia University is about to drive two into the end zone.


RESEARCH NEWS The United States Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects AgencyEnergy, known as ARPA-E, has awarded two grants to faculty in the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources that will contribute to programs totaling $4 million to change the way we generate, store and use energy.


“The ARPA-E program is extremely competitive, and only the best and most innovative ideas are able to secure funding from the program,” said Fred King, vice president for research. “These awards demonstrate that when it comes to energy, West Virginia University and its faculty are global leaders. It is significant that these projects represent two very different areas of energy research, reflecting the breadth as well as depth of West Virginia University’s energy research program.” “To have earned not one, but two ARPA-E grants in one academic year is truly an accomplishment for our faculty in the Statler College,” said Gene Cilento, Glen H. Hiner Dean of the Statler College. “These awards, WVU’s first, are extremely prestigious, and I am proud of the efforts of Drs. Famouri, Clark and Liu to earn these grants,” Cilento said. “Their work has helped place this College and University on the ARPA-E map and has solidified our standing as a major player in the energy research arena.”



The DOE’s goal is to foster advances in clean energy that will have the same level of impact as DARPA with rapid, demonstrable benefits. This is research that will change the way we power our homes, our vehicles and our lives.


The agency was modeled after DARPA, the Pentagon’s research and development arm, which was home to the nascent Internet, global positioning satellites and other useful technology that is now commonplace.


The intent of the highly competitive program is to support energy research that the DOE believes is pioneering in its approach and has the greatest potential to make an impact on the country’s energy portfolio.




FUEL CELL INNOVATION WVU’s first ARPA-E grant was awarded in November 2014 in partnership with Materials and Systems Research Inc., a Utah-based research and development firm. As part of the project, Xingbo Liu, professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, received $550,000 for innovation in solid oxide fuel cells. The project will develop an intermediatetemperature fuel cell capable of converting natural gas into electricity or liquid fuel in a single step. ELLIS

“This is a wonderful opportunity for us to develop technologies that will utilize abandoned shale gas for both power generation and conversion, which will also lead to useful chemicals,” said Liu. “I am honored to be part of the research team conducting this groundbreaking research.”

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It is part of ARPA-E’s Reliable Electricity Based on Electrochemical Systems program, or REBELS, which is aimed at developing fuel cell technology that offers low-cost, distributed generation. Distributed generation is power that is generated close to where it will be used as opposed to the traditional centralized system of power plants and electrical grids.

Fuel cells convert the chemical energy of a fuel source such as natural gas

into electric energy and useful products through an electrochemical reaction. Today’s fuel cell research generally focuses on technologies that operate at high temperatures or low temperatures and can have high associated costs. REBELS projects address the gap, supporting research on intermediatetemperature fuel cells. A fuel cell is made of three parts: a cathode, an electrolyte and an anode. The chemical reaction that happens on the cathode side of the fuel cell produces reformed fuel, which then enters the anode side. Liu’s research is focused on the electrochemical reaction that occurs on the anode side of the fuel cell. Typically, the reaction produces electricity, water, heat and small amounts of carbon dioxide, but his work with Materials and Systems Research Inc. will lead to a fuel cell that is capable of converting natural gas into liquid fuel – a feat yet to be achieved. The result will be a fuel cell that will deliver affordable generation of power or liquid fuel from natural gas with increased durability, produce a reliable alternative fuel source, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase efficiency.



WVU’s second award was granted in June to Parviz Famouri, professor in the Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering, and Nigel Clark, provost for the WVU Institute of Technology and WVU Beckley and the George B. Berry Chair of Engineering. Graduate student Matt Robinson conducted modeling work that was a key part of the proposed research. WVU has also partnered with ANSYS, a Pennsylvania-based simulation software company.



“Receiving these competitive grants puts WVU in company with other highly ranked academic institutions and industry members who have received ARPA-E awards,” Famouri said. “Additionally, the U.S. Congress mandated ARPA-E to bring technology to market for economic development and U.S. competitiveness. Dr. Clark and I believe, if successful, we can use the expertise in the state to manufacture these GENSETS in West Virginia.” Famouri and Clark received a $2 million grant that will support development of an engine with an electric generator that can produce electricity for the home of the future – also part of ARPA-E’s distributed generation vision.

The engine and alternator can be integrated with a home’s heating and cooling system, continuously generating electricity all day to supply the majority of a household’s electricity during peak usage times – morning and evening – while producing thermal energy for space and water heating. Waste heat from the power generation process can be used to reduce the energy used by furnaces and water heaters in homes, reducing homeowners’ energy costs. Additionally, the more efficient generator will not produce as much carbon dioxide emissions as conventional systems, offering a climate change benefit. Famouri and Clark were among the first to turn the concept of a linear engine and alternator into reality nearly 20 years ago and have previously designed and demonstrated generators with gasoline and diesel fuels.

More information about WVU’s projects and ARPA-E can be found at



Through ARPA-E’s program, they will use natural gas as a fuel source and will develop a 1 kW-sized linear electric generator that has 40 percent or more efficiency, will last 10 years or more, cost less than $3,000 and have a low pollutant signature.



WVU’s project will produce electric power from a single fuel source – natural gas. The novel system will use a single, low-friction, free-piston internal combustion engine that drives a linear electric generator.

Famouri and Clark’s free-piston design uses only the linear motion of the piston and does not have a rotating crank. With fewer moving parts, reduced volume and decreased friction losses, the design provides a high level of mechanical efficiency.


The project is part of ARPA-E’s Generators for Small Electrical and Thermal Systems program, or GENSETS, which is aimed at developing generator technologies that will provide residential energy savings, increased reliability for residential power supply and large reductions in carbon dioxide emissions when compared to the current infrastructure.

In a traditional engine, fuel is ignited and small explosions – internal combustion – move a piston up and down a cylinder. The piston is attached to a rod and crank. The linear movement of the piston rotates the crank.



astronautics, physics and space and helps expand interest and opportunities in science and technology throughout the state.” WVU’s close partnership with NASA’s IV&V program was fundamental to the development and planning process. Additionally, experiments and subsystems will be manufactured in labs and clean rooms on campus, while NASA’s IV&V will integrate all the parts and build the bus, which interconnects all of the modules. “The collaboration with NASA IV&V has been invaluable in developing an opportunity to demonstrate our expertise, ability to collaborate, ability to gather resources and manage a mission of this caliber,” Jaridi said.

High above Earth in the darkness of space, more than 100 miniature cube satellites, or CubeSats, orbit the planet in a silent ballet. The state of West Virginia is about to join the dance for the first time with the help of a new collaboration between West Virginia University, NASA’s Independent Verification and Validation program, the NASA West Virginia Space Grant Consortium and TMC Technologies in Fairmont.

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As part of the White House Maker Initiative, NASA aims to launch 50 small satellites from all 50 states in the next five years. West Virginia is the first of 21 “rookie states” that have not previously participated in NASA’s CubeSat program to be chosen. This will also be the first time a mission from West Virginia will orbit Earth. It is slated to launch as an auxiliary payload on a NASA rocket in mid-2016 through NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative program.


“This is a major step for our institution and our state,” said Majid Jaridi, director of the Consortium and professor of industrial and management systems engineering in the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources. “An activity of this scale helps build WVU’s reputation in the fields of

“WVU is advancing rapidly in space-related research, and this mission is an important milestone along the path to a vibrant space research program,” said Earl Scime, associate vice president for research. “Space research involves scientists from a wide array of disciplines, and with our regional partners it is exciting to see that West Virginia now has the necessary skills and knowledge to put together a complete space mission.” “My own research group is developing a new type of instrument for space missions, and once West Virginia has flown this CubeSat we will have the capability for even more ambitious space missions,” Scime said. CubeSats are small, but have high impact. They are built using off-the-shelf components, which make them low-cost methods to build and conduct research in a space environment. The WVU and NASA IV&V mission, called Simulation-toFlight 1 or STF-1, will demonstrate advanced emulation technologies, produce high-value science data and promote STEM education throughout the state of West Virginia. Undergraduate and graduate students working on the project will enhance their skills with real-world engineering challenges. “This is a unique opportunity for students,” Jaridi said. “They are going to learn firsthand what it takes to meet the demands and expectations of a NASA mission.” “Collaboration with WVU and the West Virginia Space Grant Consortium provides a unique opportunity for students to design, build and test a complete spacecraft mission from early concept planning to mission operations,” said Justin Morris, NASA’s IV&V program STF-1 project manager.

“The STF-1 CubeSat provides a unique opportunity for NASA’s IV&V program to demonstrate the value of our simulation technologies in the small satellite arena,” he said. The CubeSat will be roughly the size of a loaf of bread. Its primary goal will be to demonstrate the capabilities of the software-only simulation environments developed at NASA’s IV&V program to better support current and future NASA missions. It will also contain experiments from faculty in the WVU computer science and electrical engineering, physics and astronomy and mechanical and aerospace engineering departments.

PERFORMANCE AND DURABILITY OF III-V NITRIDE-BASED MATERIALS Dimitris Korakakis, professor of computer science and electrical engineering, in collaboration with Jeremy Dawson, associate professor of computer science and electrical engineering, will build an experiment to study the effect of radiation on electronics – nitridebased LEDs and photo detectors – when they are minimally protected in space. Onboard the CubeSat will be an array of LEDs and photodetectors manufactured at WVU. Typically, electronic devices aboard spacecraft are shielded to protect them from the harsh space environment, but WVU’s CubeSat will contain no shielding in order to measure how and when the electronics are effective.

Dimitris Vassiliadis, research associate professor of physics and astronomy in the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, will be conducting experiments related to space weather activities that occur in geospace, Earth’s space environment. Space weather refers to conditions on the sun and in space that can influence technology such as spacecraft and cellular phone satellites as well as power-grid systems on Earth. Vassiliadis plans to correlate data collected on solar-produced disturbances with computer simulations of Earth’s ionosphere and of its space weather effects. “These small satellites allow us to measure particles and geomagnetic fields so that we can capture disturbances in the space environment,” he said. “This provides both an opportunity for us to better understand highly complex processes in near-Earth space and to put in a broader context what the CubeSat is experiencing in orbit.” Vassiliadis also coordinates WVU’s RockSat program, which provides students with the opportunity to plan, build and test a real scientific payload that is launched into the upper atmosphere on sounding rockets.

John Christian and Jason Gross, assistant professors of mechanical and aerospace engineering, will be using global positioning systems and inertial measurement unit, or IMU, hardware and software to improve the accuracy of CubeSat orbit and attitude determination.

Christian, who worked at NASA’s Johnson Space Center, explained that IMUs contain accelerometers and gyroscopes that assist with spacecraft navigation by reporting changes in acceleration and rotation at very high data rates. These sensors provide a spacecraft with information that is very much analogous to how the human inner ear can help us sense movement even when our eyes are closed. He said that launching a CubeSat is a significant milestone in the development of WVU and West Virginia’s track record in space. “Spaceflight is complex, and often the first step is the hardest,” Christian said. “This mission sets the stage for future opportunities, positioning WVU and the state for even bigger things in the future.” The pre-flight tests and launch will be provided by NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative program. The mission development, which is a total commitment of more than $200,000 plus manpower, is funded by NASA’s IV&V, WVU and the NASA West Virginia Space Grant Consortium. The work is also being completed in collaboration with manpower and test facilities from TMC Technologies and Orbital ATK.




“The challenge is that with a spacecraft of this form factor – which can be as small as a Rubik’s Cube – that is flying at high speeds, even small errors in estimates of its orbit could impact a science investigation, but the available onboard power resources are too constrained to use systems that are typically flown on larger spacecraft,” Gross said. “Our goal is to push the envelope for the orbit determination of CubeSats.”


“We understand how these devices work in lab simulations on Earth,” Korakakis said. “Our goal is to test their operation and endurance in space – a hazardous vacuum full of radiation, magnetic forces and extreme temperatures. If


Gross, who previously worked at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said that CubeSats are becoming a more viable platform for conducting rigorous scientific research, so there is a need to provide more accurate orbit determination.


Korakakis explained that LEDs are used with haptics – the sense of touch that depends on the perception of closeness – for space robotics. LEDs allow robotic devices to identify distances at very close range that cameras cannot detect, so their reliability and capacity to maintain consistent strength is important.

the findings show that these devices can operate without shielding, it could improve design and make satellites lighter.”


COLLEGE WVU becomes NEWS member of the Vest

Scholarship Program Morgantown native Charles Vest is arguably one of the most decorated graduates of West Virginia University.

be able to take relevant engineering classes to gain credit toward their graduate degrees at their home institutions.

Vest, who died in 2013, served as president of the National Academy of Engineering after serving as president of Massachusetts Institute of Technology and as provost and vice president for academic affairs at the University of Michigan. A dedicated advocate for research and science and a passionate supporter of diversity and openness, Vest earned his undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering from WVU in 1963. He served as a member of the WVU Board of Governors in the final years of his life.

“Dr. Vest made many contributions to engineering, science and education over his 40-plus year career and sought to strengthen national policy in these areas,” said Gene Cilento, Glen H. Hiner Dean of the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources. “It is with great pride that his undergraduate alma mater now finds itself a part of this program that bears his name and honors his work at NAE.”



Morgantown native Charles Vest is arguably one of the most decorated graduates of West Virginia University.

WVU is now part of a prestigious group of institutions that honor his legacy through the Vest Scholarship Program. “I am delighted that West Virginia University will be part of the prestigious Vest Scholarship Program,” said President E. Gordon Gee. “The program is a wonderful way to honor the legacy of West Virginia University alumnus and Morgantown native Charles Vest, who was a loyal friend to the great state of West Virginia and a tireless advocate for higher education.”

The program unites graduate-level engineers from across the United Kingdom and beyond with leading engineering institutions in the United States to solve the world’s most pressing challenges. Scholars will spend one year at a U.S. engineering school pursuing their research in one or more of the NAE’s Grand Challenges for Engineering, and will have their living, travel and tuition expenses covered by the host institution. Scholars will also

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Announced in 2008, the NAE Grand Challenges for Engineering are 14 ways engineering can change the world for the better in the 21st century – from making solar energy economical to providing access to clean water. These challenges, called “game changing” by Vest, constitute a strategic calling for engineers across the world to use their unique strengths and training to make a lasting difference for our global society. WVU will consider scholarship applications in the areas of developing carbon sequestration methods, providing access to clean water, restoring and improving urban infrastructure and securing cyberspace. There will be 10 scholarships offered annually by the participating schools. In addition to WVU, participating institutions include Duke University, California Institute of Technology, Illinois Institute of Technology, Olin College, University of Southern California, University of Washington, MIT, North Carolina State University and University of Minnesota. Applicants must be currently enrolled and in good standing in an eligible graduate-level engineering or engineering-related program at the time of application and during the scholarship year. Applications are only accepted from students enrolled at non-U.S. institutions that participated in the 2013 NAE/Royal Academy of Engineering/ Chinese Academy of Engineering Global Grand Challenges Summit held in London. Additional details about the Vest Scholarships and application requirements can be found at

Chen tells graduates to “discover your person and find your promise” Preston Chen, who earned his master’s degree in chemical engineering from West Virginia University in 1968, has achieved great success in his native Taiwan. But something was still missing for the man who has founded 15 chemical companies.



On Saturday, May 16, that missing piece of the puzzle was awarded to Chen in the form of an honorary doctor of science degree. Chen’s journey to WVU began 50 years ago.

“He was tough, but he was fair,” Chen said. “We worked seven days a week. No football games or fraternity parties for us. But it is because of him that I am here today, nearly two generations later, receiving this incredible honor. It takes pioneers and leaders like Professor Wen, and I am proud to be associated with West Virginia University, which has so many of them.” The promise, Chen said, came in the form of freedom of thought and study. “I could approach problems creatively and develop breakthroughs that produced truly revolutionary changes in my profession,” he said. “You see, when I grew up in Taiwan, it was still a poor country focused on rote education. Here, in West Virginia, however, I had the freedom to study what was important to me. I had the independence to go outside of standard lines of thinking, and approach problems in new ways. It is a lesson that stayed with me my entire career.” For those graduates who still feel something is missing, Chen challenged them to discover their person and find their promise.



“Be creative and seek breakthroughs,” Chen said. “It will make you achieve more than you ever thought possible.”


“The nearly 8,000 mile journey from my home in Taiwan to West Virginia University usually meant taking a one-month voyage by ship across the Pacific Ocean, and then, most likely, a one- or two-week-long train or Greyhound bus trip across the United States,” Chen told the graduates. “Imagine walking from San Francisco to Morgantown, and that will give you an idea of how long it took.”

The “person” was Taiwan native Jimmy Wen, who earned his Ph.D. from WVU in 1956 and was later on the chemical engineering faculty. According to Chen, Wen was responsible for generations of students succeeding in the chemical engineering field and was an icon in the field of kinetics.


“I could approach problems creatively and develop breakthroughs that produced truly revolutionary changes in my profession.”

“When I completed my master’s degree, with my father’s strong request, I went back to Taiwan to begin my business career but still with the burning desire to return here to continue what I had started for my Ph.D.,” Chen told the graduates of the class of 2015. “But even the best-laid plans go awry. So, I was never able to return until this week. I always felt that there was something missing.”

But for Chen, who is the founder of Ho Tung Group based in Taipei, Taiwan, his drive to succeed was based on two things: a person and a promise.



West Virginia University recently entered into an agreement with the Aeronautic University of Queretaro, Mexico, creating a formal presence for WVU in one of the fastest growing aerospace industrial cities in North America. Under the new agreement, eligible Mexican students will get two master’s degrees: one from WVU with an emphasis on aerospace system performance and another one from UNAQ with an emphasis on manufacturing. According to Victor Mucino, professor and associate chair for education in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at WVU, this represents a growing market in quality graduate education delivery. “The aerospace industry in Mexico is interested in holders of master’s degrees with a wide range of expertise in the areas of performance and manufacturing,” Mucino said, “and very few institutions in Mexico can produce them. Companies like GE, Bombardier and Rolls-Royce have major plants and facilities in Queretaro, and the demand for top-quality graduates is very high.”

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Agreement creates formal presence for WVU engineering efforts in Mexico 12


While other universities are attempting to establish such agreements, WVU has an advantage. Since 1997, Mucino has directed WVU’s Industrial Outreach Program in Mexico, which pairs WVU students with students in Queretaro over the summer to solve meaningful engineering projects in industry. During the academic year, students from Queretaro come to Morgantown to study and learn about the professional environment in the U.S. The success of this program helped solidify this new agreement between the two institutions.

In the first year, students from Mexico will take at least three courses from UNAQ plus two courses from WVU via distance learning. The courses will be developed through WVU’s Office of Academic Innovation, Online and Extended Campus. Mucino hopes that this will eventually allow WVU to offer its programs to an extended audience of industry practitioners looking to advance their skill set. Students will spend the second year on campus at WVU, where they will need to complete three courses in order to earn their degree. They will also be required to conduct research, leading to a master’s thesis to be defended at the end of the second year. “Students will most likely be involved in research projects dealing with technology development, i.e., developing testing protocols for performance testing of aerospace systems,” Mucino said. “Queretaro has all the infrastructure necessary to do that and researchers will be needed to develop and implement testing protocols to comply with international aviation standards.

Representatives in attendance for the signing from WVU included David Stewart, associate vice president for international and global outreach; Michael Wilhelm, director of the Office of International Students and Scholars; and Mucino. UNAQ was represented by its president, Jorge Gutierrez de Velasco; Provost Mario Guerrero; and Norma Munoz, director of graduate programs. Fernando de la Isla Herrera, Secretary of Education; Angel Ramirez Vazquez, director of the Council for Science and Technology of the State of Queretaro; Araceli Partearroyo, director of academic affairs, U.S. Embassy in Mexico; and Rebecca Thompson, cultural attache, U.S. Embassy in Mexico were also in attendance. The agreement was also signed by WVU President E. Gordon Gee; Cilento; and Jacky Prucz, chair, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, who were unable to attend. WVU STATLER COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING AND MINERAL RESOURCES


Mucino can see a time when students from WVU may want to participate in this exchange program as well. He also sees the program as a way to attract top quality doctoral candidates to WVU.

At the request of the National Science Foundation, NAE convened a committee of leading technical thinkers to create a list of the grand challenges and opportunities for engineering. The committee’s final conclusions, known as the NAE Grand Challenges for Engineering in the 21st Century, builds upon essential engineering fundamentals to develop students’ broader understanding of behavior, policy, entrepreneurship and global perspective; one that kindles the passion necessary to take on challenges at humanity’s grandest scale.


All cost associated with the program will be covered by the government of Mexico and the state of Queretaro. Additional support for faculty participation in applied research is expected to come through competitive proposals to Mexico’s National Council of Science and Technology and from industry.

“The College is pleased to continue its support of Dr. Mucino’s work over many years in establishing this very exciting opportunity,” said Gene Cilento, Glen H. Hiner Dean of the Statler College. “It certainly can help support meaningful exchange programs, workforce development and the National Academy of Engineering’s Grand Challenges initiative.”


“In the manufacturing of aerospace systems, there is a need to design, fabricate, install and test many automated mechanical systems used in the manufacturing processes,” he added. “This opens opportunities for applied research in mechatronics, intelligent machines and embedded systems, all areas in which WVU has expertise.”

“MAE is always interested in top-quality candidates for its Ph.D. program, and I believe we will be able to recruit a few top-quality students to further their studies at WVU,” Mucino said.


COLLEGE NEWS WVU offers first-of-its-kind engineering study abroad course in Jamaica BY BERNADETTE DOMBROWSKI

When Ordel Brown, teaching assistant professor of freshman engineering and faculty advisor at West Virginia University, noticed a need for engineering-based study abroad options for her students, she jumped at the chance to create a new program.

competitions and assisting with basic on-site mechanical and construction repairs. In addition to academic engagement, students participated in field trips to cultural and historical landmarks, snorkeling and kayaking in a marine park and zip-lining through the rainforest.

“I advise more than 150 engineering students, and all of those who studied abroad did so through another discipline or program,” said Brown. “I saw the need for a service-learning engineeringbased study abroad program and wanted to make sure our students had that option.”

The course counts toward the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources’ Certificate of Global Competency, which endorses a student’s ability to work effectively across cultural and linguistic barriers while focusing on engineering issues that transcend culture.

When Brown looked for a location, she looked home to her native Jamaica. After teaming up with Amizade, a global service-learning organization, Brown chose the towns based on their need for engineering assistance.

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The four-credit course began in the spring with a half-semester class at West Virginia University that taught students about Jamaica’s culture and sustainability and identified partner communities’ needs in engineering education and construction. From these lessons, students sourced materials and built and tested prototypes for projects, while managing a budget. The course culminated with a two-week trip to Montego Bay and Petersfield, Jamaica, July 6-17, where students used their newfound knowledge and prototype plans to assist the community. Students stayed in traditional resorts and homestays with local Jamaican families.


“There is a high demand for engineering graduates that are globally competent,” said Brown. “This goes beyond mere knowledge and appreciation of diverse cultures and languages to include engagement in structured activities that allow for true gains in one’s capacity to function across sociocultural boundaries.”

“Resort areas are beautiful but only provide a one-sided experience of the culture and society of a foreign country,” said Brown. “Participating in homestays gives students the opportunity to fully immerse themselves into the lives of local families and help them better understand the impact of their engineering efforts.” Students were involved in many activities on the trip including teaching middle and high school students about engineering and introductory computer skills, leading engineering design

The engineering service-learning course is open to all undergraduate engineering majors. Tuition fees cover course delivery and instruction, airfare, ground travel, accommodation, meals, field trips and scheduled educational, cultural and service activities, travel and medical insurance. “Our students gain much more than credits when spending time abroad,” said Brown. “Our students learn to function on international teams, become more socially responsible, have fun and develop great friendships that will be invaluable in their lives and careers.”

Wyrick named associate dean for academic affairs David A. Wyrick, the William L. McKnight Distinguished Visiting Professor in Technology Development at the Swenson College of Science and Engineering at the University of Minnesota Duluth, assumed the position / WYRICK of West Virginia University’s Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources associate dean for academic affairs on July 31, 2015. Wyrick will be responsible for oversight of the College’s academic programs at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. He will also be a tenured faculty member in the College’s Department of Industrial and Management Systems Engineering. “I am thrilled to come to WVU and the Statler College,” said Wyrick. “This is a perfect match for my passion for engineering education to serve the students, campus, state and beyond. I am really impressed with everyone’s enthusiasm and dedication to the students and the University.” Wyrick has a broad base of experience in engineering, entrepreneurship and management in international education, industrial practice and professional society leadership. At the University of Minnesota Duluth, Wyrick was responsible for developing, promoting and growing the master’s program in engineering management, as well as identifying opportunities for increased internationalization and entrepreneurship across campus. He also serves as associate executive director for the American Society of Engineering Management, where he is charged with developing and maintaining relationships with key partner institutions, many of which are international efforts.

“I have worked closely at the interface between academia and industry throughout most of my professional career,” said Herbst. “I consider this position at WVU to be a unique opportunity to enhance collaboration between some of the potentially best mining researchers and top mining executives. “Dean (Gene) Cilento of the Statler College has committed his support to strengthening and growing the Department of Mining Engineering at WVU using the resources of the College,” Herbst added. “I personally promise to help make our graduates among the best trained in the country not only in coal mining and cleaning but also for metalliferous mining and extraction.” Herbst has also had a very productive career in industry and as a consultant in extractive metallurgy and mineral processing. He served as president and chief executive office of Control International and, in 1995, he formed JA Herbst & Associates, where he developed software for mining and mineral processing plant simulation. The company was eventually sold to Svedala, a Swedish equipment manufacturer; Herbst remained on as general manager and subsequently was named chief scientist of Metso Minerals of Finland. A professional engineer, Herbst earned his master’s and doctoral degrees in metallurgical engineering from the University of California at Berkeley and his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from Northwestern University. Herbst is well-prepared for the task, according to Cilento, Glen H. Hiner Dean of the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources. “Dr. Herbst is an accomplished educator and researcher who brings a very prestigious set of credentials to West Virginia University,” said Cilento. “This is a crucial time in the mining industry and we need to do all we can to help promote technological advancements that support its future. His vision and ability to work across different sectors of the industry will serve to promote this state and our University nationally as a leader in the energy sector.”



Wyrick received his doctorate in engineering management from the University of Missouri-Rolla. He earned master’s degrees in engineering management and mechanical engineering from the University of Alaska, Anchorage, and the University of Wyoming, respectively.

Herbst has achieved an outstanding reputation both nationally and internationally in the area of metallurgy and mineral processing. He has spent more than 40 years in academia, most of it at the University of Utah, which included a nine-year stint as chair of the Department of Metallurgy.


“Dr. Wyrick’s proven track record of growing and advancing engineering programs at a number of institutions will help our College move forward in many important ways,” said Gene Cilento, Glen H. Hiner Dean of the College. “I look for him to help us establish new educational programs and opportunities in emerging disciplines that support engineering research and development.”


John A. Herbst, a member of the National Academy of Engineering, was named the Robert E. Murray Endowed Chair of West Virginia University’s Department of Mining Engineering, effective August 16, 2015.


His previous positions include a stint as the dean of the School of Science and Engineering at Al Akhawayn University in Ifrane, Morocco, as well as serving as both the chair and director of graduate studies for the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at the University of Minnesota Duluth. He also served as the Bryan Pearce Bagley Regents Chair of Engineering at Texas Tech University.

Herbst named chair of mining engineering



Every year, the West Virginia University Foundation celebrates a special class of teacher: The kind that you remember and keep in touch with decades after graduating. The kind that groggyeyed underclassmen have no problem waking up for at 8 a.m. The kind that nudges students toward their dreams. These professors leave a lasting impact, and are recipients of the WVU Foundation Award for Outstanding Teaching. Six professors, including two from the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources – Melissa Morris and Mario Perhinschi – were selected for the award. “These six professors inspire students to achieve more than they themselves ever thought they could,” said Provost Joyce McConnell. “President Gee and I often publicly assert that West Virginia University offers an exceptional education – and we’re proud to be able to point to this kind of passionate, exciting teaching as the foundation of that education.”

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“We congratulate this year’s recipients who truly go above and beyond in their areas of expertise,” said Cindi Roth, WVU Foundation president and CEO. “WVU is fortunate to have such highcaliber faculty inspiring our students. The Foundation is pleased to be able to fund these awards annually because of the tremendous generosity of our donors.”




The WVU Foundation established the awards in 1985 as a way to celebrate faculty who’ve established patterns of distinguished teaching and exceptional innovation in teaching methods, course and curriculum design, and instructional tools.

“I remember attending the ceremony where my dad received the Foundation Award when I was young,” Morris said. “Student comments were shared about how my father cared for his students; one student commented that it was common for my dad to give up his lunch to help students. I remember being proud of his accomplishment, thinking that he was making a difference in his students’ lives and his example is a large part of what makes me the type of teacher I am today.”

Melissa Morris The analogy of the apple not falling far from the tree can easily be used to describe Morris’ success as a teacher. Her father, Gary, won the Foundation Award for Outstanding Teaching in 1993, seven years after joining the faculty in mechanical and aerospace engineering. For the daughter, a teaching assistant professor in freshman engineering, the award comes just four years after completion of her doctorate in mechanical engineering.

Morris consistently seeks ways to engage first-year students through the use of pop culture applications. For an Honors course, she created a project around the idea of a “zombie apocalypse” that has the potential to spread a virus through a local dance club. Students developed a computer code structure to track the spread of the virus. “The personal relationships she creates in her courses seem to increase things like attendance rates, attention span and productivity,” said David Beahr, a sophomore in petroleum and natural gas engineering. “You feel personally obligated to work harder because of this relationship.”

FACULTY NEWS IN BRIEF Vladislav Kecojevic, Massey Professor of Mining Engineering, was appointed president of the Society of Mining Professors at its annual meeting, held in June in Freiberg, Germany. The society represents the global academic community and is committed to making a significant contribution to the future of the minerals disciplines.

“I’m honored to receive this award for doing something that I truly love,” Morris said. “My teaching philosophy is simple: I care about each one of my students, their learning and their success, and I craft my courses in such a way that students are challenged, encouraged and comfortable.”

Mario Perhinschi Recognized by his students and colleagues as an innovator, Perhinschi, associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, is responsible for the development of five courses in the department, most of which are in the area of flight simulation and control. Students now have access to state-of-the-art facilities and simulation tools, including / PERHINSCHI a flight simulation computer lab, a six-degrees-of-freedom motion-based flight simulator and in-house-developed advanced software packages, all of which helped pique their interest in the discipline.

“I am honored and proud to be joining such an elite group of materials professionals,” said Liu. Liu was honored at a special ceremony at the Convocation of Fellows held during the ASM awards dinner on Tuesday, October 6, in Columbus, Ohio. Liu began his professional career at WVU as a postdoctoral researcher in 2000, and joined the faculty in mechanical and aerospace engineering in 2002. He has received several honors from the scientific community including the R&D 100 Award in 2011 and the Innovator of the Year award from TechConnect WV in 2013. He was also named the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources Outstanding Researcher in 2007 and 2009, and Researcher of the Year in 2011 and 2015. He has served in various leadership positions outside WVU, including as chair of the Minerals, Metals and Materials Society High Temperature Alloys Committee from 2011-2013 and its Energy Conversion and Storage Committee from 2012-2014. He is the standing vice chair and program chair for the Basic Science Division of the American Ceramics Society. Liu received his bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in materials science from the University of Science and Technology in Beijing, China. ASM International is dedicated to serving the materials science and engineering profession. Through its network of 36,000 members worldwide, ASM provides authoritative information and knowledge on materials and processes, from the structural to the nanoscale. Less than one-tenth of a percentage of its members are selected as Fellows annually. WVU STATLER COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING AND MINERAL RESOURCES


In the past five years, Perhinschi has been twice selected as an outstanding teacher in the Statler College and was recognized as the College’s Teacher of the Year in 2014. In 2013, he received the outstanding teacher award from the MAE Academy of Distinguished Alumni.

The honor recognizes distinguished contributions in the field of materials science and engineering. Liu was selected for significant contributions to science and technology of hightemperature materials development used in energy production and conversion.


“I try to focus on bringing interesting and significant real-world problems into the classroom that can be directly related to both basic and advanced concepts,” Perhinschi said. “This creates an educational framework that significantly increases the interest and motivation of students and results in improved learning effectiveness.”


Xingbo Liu, professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering and associate chair of research at West Virginia University, has been named a Fellow of the ASM International. ASM Fellows are technical and professional leaders who have been recognized by their colleagues and serve as advisors to the society.


“Flight simulation class consisted of engaging lectures, stimulating labs with simulation software and, most excitingly, flight tests in the real motion-based simulator,” said Adil Togayev, who recently earned his master’s degree in mechanical engineering. “You will not find any other class where students are so enthusiastic about the tests and curious about the subject.”



NEW FACULTY Omar Adbul-Aziz

Victor Fragoso

Saiph Savage

Assistant Professor

Assistant Professor

Assistant Professor

Civil and Environmental Engineering Education: Ph.D. University of Minnesota, 2008 M.S. University of Waterloo, 2004 B.S. Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology, 2002 Teaching Interests: hydrology Research Interests: ecological-water resources engineering, climate and land use/cover change impacts on water resources and ecosystems, system dynamic modeling of ecological-water resources and related infrastructure

Kevin Bandura Assistant Professor Computer Science and Electrical Engineering Education: Ph.D. Carnegie Mellon University, 2011 B.S. Carnegie Mellon University, 2003 Teaching Interests: radio astronomy, circuits and electronics, high-performance signal processing Research Interests: high-performance signal processing for radio astronomy

Education: Ph.D. University of California-Santa Barbara, 2014 B.S. Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, 2009

Education: Ph.D. University of California-Santa Barbara, 2015 B.S. Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, 2009

Teaching Interests: fundamental topics in computer science, machine learning and computer vision

Teaching Interests: visualization, social information networks, human computer interaction, social computing

Research Interests: computer vision, machine learning, optimization, biometrics, augmented reality

Research Interests: data analytics for social networks, theory of design for social collaboration systems

Ahmed E. Ismail

Yanqui Song

Assistant Professor

Assistant Professor

Chemical Engineering Education: Ph.D. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2005 B.S. Yale University, 1998 Teaching Interests: thermodynamics, chemical kinetics, transport phenomena, separations and numerical methods Research Interests: biomass and biopolymers, interfacial phenomena, multi-scale modeling, algorithm development

Computer Science and Electrical Engineering Education: Ph.D. Tsinghua University, 2009 B.S. Tsinghua University, 2003 Teaching Interests: machine learning, knowledge engineering, text mining and text analytics Research Interests: machine learning for large data sets, text analytics, knowledge fusion from heterogeneous information sources

Nasser Nasrabadi

Thorsten Wuest

Associate Professor


Assistant Professor

Education: Ph.D. West Virginia University, 2002 M.S. West Virginia University, 1999 B.S. West Virginia University, 1997

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Computer Science and Electrical Engineering

Jeremy Dawson Computer Science and Electrical Engineering


Computer Science and Electrical Engineering

Teaching Interests: electronics and photonics, nanotechnology Research Interests: photonics, nanofabrication, biometrics data sensing, rapid DNA analysis

Computer Science and Electrical Engineering Education: Ph.D. Imperial College of Science and Technology, University of London, 1984 B.S. Imperial College of Science and Technology, University of London, 1980

Industrial and Management Systems Engineering Education: Ph.D. University of Bremen, Germany, 2014 M.S. University of Bremen, 2009 M.S. Aut University, New Zealand, 2008

Teaching Interests: image and video processing, neural networks, data communications

Teaching Interests: manufacturing processes, supervised learning, product design/life-cycle management

Research Interests: multimodal biometrics, image and video processing, video analytics, data and sensor fusion

Research Interests: quality management in smart manufacturing with an emphasis on processes and a systems perspective









A team of 16 West Virginia University engineering students proved that a robot can live up to its name. The WVU robot Cataglyphis – named after a desert ant known for its ability to journey across great distances and reliably return home – traveled the distance to the campus of Worcester Polytechnic Institute for the fourth annual Sample Return Robot Challenge as part of NASA’s Centennial Challenges held June 8-12. It returned home to Morgantown with the first level two victory in the competition’s four-year history and a $100,000 award for its performance, thanks to its successful retrieval of the coveted “Red Rock” sample worth a higher point value and a six-figure check. It was also a milestone week for Cataglyphis’s team of designers who worked tirelessly for 18 months to prepare their robot extraordinaire to autonomously seek out samples on a 20-acre field over a two-hour period and return them to a designated point.

That’s quite a week for a robot. This was the second year that WVU has proven its talents in the robotics field during the competition. WVU was the only team to successfully complete level one during their Challenge debut in 2014, which qualified them to return and compete at level two this year – where they secured another first when they successfully completed level two.

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“Last year, we learned how to put this together and learned what tools were essential to successfully build the robot. This year, we built those tools and used them in the most efficient manner,” said team member Jared Strader, a graduate student in mechanical and aerospace engineering from Clarksburg. “We knew the difficulty level was going to increase significantly this year, so it is the best feeling for us to go out there and accomplish what we set out to do,” said Strader. “We worked for nearly 100 hours per week in the time frame between finals and the competition. It’s hard to describe how rewarding it is to see these results today.”


According to Monsi Roman, rising program director of the NASA Centennial Challenges, the results achieved by WVU are significant and can only be accomplished by teams with a hybrid of strengths. “It’s the first time we’ve had a level two winner in this competition and had the opportunity to award a team with this kind of prize money,” said Roman. “It is not an easy task; it is certainly a significant win.” Roman said as the level two victors, WVU achieved the highest score of any 2015 Sample Return Robot Challenge team. While no other collegiate teams competed in the level two Challenge, MIT, RPI and Oregon State University all competed in the level one Challenge. “WVU is walking away with a win because they combined the smarts from the software, mechanical and electrical parts of their system,” said Roman. “But most importantly, they won because they worked collaboratively and had a very strong project management team to guide them.”

The leader of that project management team was Yu Gu, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering. Team members credit Gu’s leadership for guiding their success. “Gu is a great mentor; he thinks about everything,” said team member Scott Harper, a senior mechanical engineering major from Spencer.

“From the minute they returned home from last year’s competition, the team from WVU has been working incredibly hard to prepare their robot for this competition,” said Cilento. “I’m proud of the effort they put forward and how well they performed in this year’s competition. They have made the Statler College and WVU a recognized name nationally in the field of robotics.”

Watch a video from the competition online at “Everything has a plan. He has a checklist for his checklists. He always points us in the right direction to allow us to be as successful as possible.” Gu is the portrait of humility when told of his students’ praise. “I just mentored them,” said Gu. “They did all the hard work and brought home the victory. They were the ones who programmed, researched and thought all this through. It’s exciting to see it pay off for them.” Gu’s leadership was complemented by his Statler College colleagues Jason Gross, Marvin Cheng and Powsiri Klinkhachorn, all of whom provided guidance and consultation to the team in the programming and design of the robot. They hope to use the prize money as seed funds for scholarships for engineering students to perpetuate the program. The hard work of the team and their faculty advisors certainly hasn’t gone unnoticed by Gene Cilento, Glen H. Hiner Dean of the Statler College.

WVU will certainly be a name that is recognized by the judges for years to come.


“I love watching this team because they have outstanding camaraderie, fantastic leadership in Dr. Gu and demonstrate great confidence in their algorithm,” said Stafford. “They are an amazing group of students.”


NASA Centennial Challenges were initiated in 2005 to engage the public in the process of advanced technology development. The program offers incentive prizes to generate revolutionary solutions to problems of interest to NASA and the nation. Competitors are not supported by government funding and awards are only made to successful teams when the challenges are met.

Highlights of the visit included tours of the von Karman Visitor Center, the Space Flight Operations Facility and the Spacecraft Assembly Facility. The WVU team gave a presentation of how it tackled the autonomous sample return problem.







“Many people came to the seminar, and the conference room was full,” said Gu. “They also asked several questions on various aspects of the robot design after the presentation. There is a direct connection between JPL’s vision of future planetary missions and the objectives of the NASA Centennial Challenges. It is clear that the technology we are developing could one day be infused into NASA’s missions in the future.”



“This was a very educational and inspirational tour for everyone on the team,” said Yu Gu. “There are many similarities between the work researchers at JPL are doing and what we have been doing in preparation for the competition.”


“It takes a team who can build a mature mechanical system that allows them to focus on the visual and navigational challenges of the robot to be successful in this competition, and WVU executed those elements well,” said Ken Stafford, director of the Robotics Resource Center at WPI and competition judge.

TO THE VICTOR GO THE SPOILS The old adage, “to the victor go the spoils,” rang true for the students involved in NASA’s Sample Return Robotic Competition. In July, they were invited to visit NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. The invitation came from David Beaty, chief scientist from the Mars Exploration Directorate, who was a judge at the competition.




When it comes to robotic competitions, weight matters. The team from West Virginia University learned that lesson the hard way, coming up just short at NASA’s Revolutionary Aerospace Systems ConceptsAcademic Linkages or Robo-Ops Competition, held June 2-4, at the Rock Yard at Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas. The defending champion Mountaineers finished second behind University of Maryland, who bested WVU’s record-setting performance from 2014 by scoring 102 points. According to team member John Lucas, overall weight of the rovers was a key factor in the competition. “We expected to be lighter than average, but were surprised to see that the other teams had really focused on weight this year as well,” said Lucas, of New Market, Maryland. “Virginia Tech, for example, had a rover that looked to be one of the heaviest but proved to be the lightest of them all. If we had focused more on experimenting with weight instead of different drive types, such as wheels versus tracks, I think our final design could have been improved.” The team, according to faculty advisor Powsiri Klinkhachorn, professor of computer science and electrical engineering, used a split articulated front-back robot to minimize weight.

“The new design cut the total weight down by more than four kilograms from last year,” he added. “The robot was very robust and functioned flawlessly. Unfortunately, we did not cut the weight down enough.” Before the competition begins, the rovers are weighed, which determines teams’ starting times. “Teams with lighter-weight rovers had the advantage of seeing where other teams were collecting samples and were able to get them in a shorter time, allowing more time for exploration,” Klinkhachorn said. “Our bullet-proof rover seems like overkill. Our goal for next year is to cut the weight down to below 30 kilograms.” “Throughout the year we battled with balancing weight and strength of the entire rover,” Lucas said. “Having planned more for expansion would have allowed for easier addition of batteries and other components, which would have benefited us.” This is the fourth-straight year WVU has competed in the event, which challenges teams to build a planetary rover prototype and demonstrate its capabilities to perform a

series of competitive tasks. The rovers compete on a planetary analog environment under the supervision of NASA judges. Up to three members of the team (plus the faculty advisor) travel to JSC for the on-site testing with the remaining team members staying behind at the local university to conduct mission control-type tasks. The Mountaineers made the most of their run, scoring 81 points. They even managed to take a page from the WVU football team’s playbook, with the rover cuing John Denver’s “Take Me Home, Country Roads” as it finished its run. “We used a Microsoft Surface 2 tablet as the main computer to operate the rover,” Lucas said. “Since it has built-in speakers, we realized during testing that we had the ability to play the song.” The teams each receive a $10,000 stipend from NASA/NIA to partially offset the cost of rover hardware and transportation costs to attend the event. Additional support for WVU’s team was provided by the NASA West Virginia Space Grant Consortium, the Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources and the Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering.

“For the past three years, we designed and built our rover using a rocker-bogie suspension system similar to those NASA sent to Mars,” Klinkhachorn said. “We perfected the rover last year. This year, however, we challenged our students to redesign and build an entirely new system.

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continued from page 21...



Under the mentorship of Powsiri Klinkhachorn, professor of computer science and electrical engineering, four students enrolled in a senior design capstone course took their class project to the Sixth Annual Mercury Remote Robot Challenge, held on April 18. The Mountaineers, who faced an international field of competitors from the U.S., Mexico, Columbia and Brazil, finished third behind University of Houston and the Federal Institute of Education, Science and Technology of Paraíba in Brazil. Team leader Haley Smith of Centreville, Virginia, said the group knew they wanted to work together on a project. A presentation by Klinkhachorn, who has led several highly successful robotic competitions teams at WVU, helped seal the deal. “The opportunity to participate in an international competition and get our names out there was a great experience,” said Smith, who has accepted a position as a junior software developer with Computer Sciences Corporation in Falls Church, Virginia. “I didn’t want to leave WVU without building something.”

bridge with a 30-degree incline and curved turns, ending with a sprint to the end. Robots must also pick up a golf ball before the bridge and deposit it at an indicated location. The robot must be controlled via the Internet from at least 50 miles away. Robots also needed to pass a loss of signal test, recognizing and acting accordingly when commands from the operator are lost. Construction of the robot tested the students’ ability when it came to electrical and mechanical design, embedded programming, wireless communication and latency. Smith, under competition rules, was the only member of the team allowed to touch the robot prior to the start of the competition. Once the competition started, Dustin Matheny of Lost Creek, the robot handler, was the only one allowed to deal with issues encountered on the course.


Microsoft Surface tablet for increased processing power. Because the Surface has as much processing power as a full-sized computer, Smith explained, the team barely had any lag in its camera. “Our robot was described as ‘The tank from West Virginia,’” said Eric Loy of Keyser. “Everybody at the competition was talking about it because it was the largest and most powerful robot when compared to the others.

“Other teams were having difficulty with their camera systems,” said Matheny. “Their robots were smaller and more agile than ours but they appeared to have problems controlling them because they were so fast and nimble.”

“This was our first time competing here, so now we have learned much more about this competition for future reference,” said Loy, who remained in Morgantown along with team member Steven Kimble II, of Keyser, to handle remote operations.

The key, Smith said, to the Mountaineers success was the team’s use of a

“I’m very proud of how quickly and well this team of students came together to successfully compete in this event,” said Klinkhachorn. “This kind of handson learning will come in very handy as they graduate from WVU and enter the workforce.”


The competition challenges teams to create robots that traverse a course featuring 90-degree turns, quick switchbacks, a




A group of students put their classroom experience to the test this spring at a robotics event held at Oklahoma State University.








A trio of seniors from West Virginia University attended a major international summit organized by the National Academies of Engineering of the U.S., U.K. and China to explore new approaches for solving some of the world’s most pressing challenges. Andy Maloney, Emily Phipps and Katie O’Connell – students in the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources – attended the second Global Grand Challenges Summit in Beijing, China, on September 15-16. Sponsored by the Chinese Academy of Engineering, the U.S. National Academy of Engineering and the Royal Academy of Engineering, the invitation-only event included a diverse mix of thought leaders and students who discussed a series of opportunities believed to be achievable and sustainable to help people and the planet survive. The summit focused on the themes found in the NAE Grand Challenges report – sustainability, infrastructure, energy, health and joy of living – along with education and security/resilience.

An industrial engineering major from Cornelius, North Carolina, Phipps used the conference as an opportunity to collaborate with others on a global scale. “WVU has opened up many doors to countless opportunities during my collegiate experience,” Phipps said. “This conference allowed me to travel across the world and engage with other engineers in hopes of coming together to drive change.


Phipps is a member of the WVU chapters of the Society of Women Engineers and the Institute of Industrial Engineers, Alpha Phi Mu, the Mortar Board Honor Society and has done three co-ops with Walt Disney World’s Industrial Engineering Department.

“This was a great opportunity for our students and allowed us to showcase the talent found at WVU to the world,” said Gene Cilento, Glen H. Hiner Dean of the Statler College. “I look forward to them putting what they learned at this international event to work in the College and seeing how their attendance helps shape their research and career foci.” For Maloney, a chemical engineering major from Morgantown, this was yet another feather in his cap, which includes a Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship, a German Academic Exchange Service – or DAAD – Research Internships in Science and Engineering Scholarship and a Statler Undergraduate Research Scholarship.

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“I was most interested in learning about engineering future medicines because it was most similar to the type of research I want to do,” said Maloney, who currently conducts research under the tutelage of Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering Cerasela Zoica Dinu in the area of nanomaterials. “My career goals are to garner a Ph.D. in chemical engineering and then either work in academia or the private sector. This conference helped me form lasting connections with those also pursuing research-based careers.”


“With my industrial engineering background, I aspire to solve problems and lead teams to identify solutions to industries’ current issues,” Phipps said. “This conference gave me a glimpse of how collaboration, engagement and knowledge can drive change in our world.”

In addition to learning from others, O’Connell used the conference as a way to showcase her ideas.


“I took this opportunity because I believe that experiencing the world and meeting individuals with different viewpoints is the only way to grow as a person,” said the mechanical engineering major from Wellsburg. “It’s amazing what I have learned so far in my life just by listening to different opinions; whether I agree or disagree it always shines a new light on how I look at things. This conference will help me understand different cultures around the globe and make me a more versatile individual when it comes to handling sensitive situations with different cultures.” An Honors student, O’Connell is a member of several student organizations including Material Advantage and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. She is also a member of the engineering honor society, Tau Beta Pi.


Financial support was made available by NAE, the Statler College and the students’ home departments.

PATEL NAMED 2015 FULBRIGHT SCHOLAR Nikul Patel, a chemical engineering major from Huntington, is one of four West Virginia University students to be selected for a 2015 Fulbright Scholarship, which will provide him with funding to undertake research and teaching opportunities abroad. The prestigious Fulbright Program, sponsored by the United States government, is designed to increase mutual understanding between the U.S. and the people of other countries. Fulbright recipients are selected on the basis of academic or professional achievement, as well as demonstrated leadership potential in their fields. “These students have a passion for the countries they will be living in, and will be excellent ambassadors for the University and our country,” said Amy Cyphert, director of the ASPIRE Office. Patel has quite the lineage. He is an American born in England, also his mother’s birthplace. His father was born in Kenya, and all of his grandparents were born in India. Patel calls Huntington his hometown and like fellow Fulbright recipient Luke Bowling, he attended Cabell Midland High School. The two are friends and have been roommates throughout their four years at WVU.



But in September, Patel expanded his international palette even more. He is volunteering with a nonprofit organization that assists rural women in Ghana in the


processing and distribution of Shea nuts and Shea butter. Patel said more than 50 percent of rural women in Ghana serve as the head of the household. The organization, StarShea, focuses on economically empowering those women to drive growth and reduce poverty in rural communities. “While studies have been conducted about Shea butter production, research into the purification of wastewater from the system has been neglected due to the difficulty of separation,” Patel said. “As a chemical engineering student, I have learned how to assess economic and environmental components of chemical processes in order to optimize efficiency.” Patel hopes that by applying new approaches to Shea butter production, the profit margin for rural Ghanaian women will increase. “What is distinctive about our scholars is the way they bring knowledge together in unexpected ways,” said Ryan Claycomb, associate dean of the Honors College. “Whether they are combining technical expertise with a passion for international development, advancing medical research in a global context or connecting cultural study and career aspirations, these students are doing more than just acing their classes. They are showing us that broad knowledge and a global outlook really do make a positive impact.”




At a time when Greek organizations across the nation are taking a hit for bad behavior, a new fraternity at WVU – Sigma Phi Delta – is hoping to change that stigma. Founded in 1924, Sigma Phi Delta is open only to students enrolled or working in a curriculum or program leading toward a degree in engineering, and chapters are required to conduct professional programming in the form of seminars and field trips. They do, however, have a social component, with many maintaining chapter houses. Read more about the students involved in the creation of the chapter online at


The hard work of more than 40 West Virginia University students involved in EcoCAR 3 paid off with a number of awards at the end-ofyear awards banquet held recently in Seattle, Washington. The team received top honors in two categories, Facilities Inspection and Andrew Nix, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, was recognized with the Faculty Advisor of the Year award for demonstrating exceptional leadership and challenging his students to work harder each day. Read more about the team’s first-year achievements online at



Cristin Dolan, of Wheeling, was one of five West Virginia high school seniors to be awarded WVU’s most prestigious scholarship, the Foundation Scholarship. When coupled with the state’s PROMISE Scholarship, the Foundation Scholarship provides incoming freshmen in excess of $80,000 to cover college costs for four years of undergraduate studies, including tuition and fees, room and board and a book stipend. They will also receive a $4,500 stipend to be used to broaden their horizons through study abroad or academic enhancement opportunities such as internships. Dolan hopes to major in biomedical engineering. For more on Dolan, visit


ALUMNI NEWS WVU Grad and GM executive mentors EcoCAR3 team


West Virginia University graduate Bill Cawthorne is quick to credit his experiences in student competitions with helping pave the way for his 15-year career at General Motors. Now he’s helping to create the next generation of automotive engineers by serving as a mentor to WVU’s EcoCAR3 team.

Cawthorne headed to General Motors where he serves as the engineering group manager for control systems engineering in the Electrification New Products Department in Milford, Michigan. He leads, manages and provides technical guidance to the team of engineers that develop the control systems for GM products.

When Cawthorne found out WVU was selected as one of 16 teams to compete in EcoCAR3, an advanced vehicle technology competition sponsored by his employer, he jumped at the chance to become the team’s mentor.

As EcoCAR3 team mentor, Cawthorne helps guide more than 40 undergraduate and graduate students through the four-year competition to create a hybrid-electric Chevrolet Camaro that reduces environmental impact while maintaining the performance of the car.

“Participating in student competitions was very beneficial to my career so the chance to give back to a student competition and specifically one involving my alma mater is a great opportunity,” said Cawthorne. A Wellsburg native, Cawthorne made the most of his time at WVU, serving on and becoming president of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Student Advisory Board. He competed on WVU’s Formula Lightning Project, an electric car competition for engineering students, serving as team leader for five years.

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“Working on the Formula Lightning Project taught me about the technical aspects of electrical engineering but also taught me valuable lessons about management, leadership, planning and budgeting,” said Cawthorne. “It really fostered my passion for alternative-fueled vehicles and helped me to get to where I am today in my career.” “Bill was the spark behind WVU’s very successful Formula Lightning,” said Roy Nutter, professor in the Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering and team advisor. “Without his leadership and enthusiasm, the team would not have been the success that it was.” After earning four degrees at WVU – two at the undergraduate level in addition to a master’s and doctorate in electrical engineering –


“Bill was a valuable resource to our team during the first year of the EcoCAR3 competition,” said Andrew Nix, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering and faculty advisor of EcoCAR3. “His extensive practical experience in hybrid vehicle technology at GM has benefited our team significantly and his mentorship has really helped our students. Bill’s passion for WVU has provided additional motivation for our team.” “Working with the students at WVU has been a very positive experience,” said Cawthorne. “They have dedication and passion and are willing to put in the long hours and hard work that is required to be successful in this competition.” And while winning the competition is a goal for Cawthorne, it is not the only measure of success. “At GM, we look forward to sponsoring EcoCAR competitions to help foster the next generation of great automotive engineers,” said Cawthorne. “If we only considered winning a success, we would miss out on recognizing all of the skills learned and the job opportunities created. “As a West Virginia native and alumni, I am proud to be a Mountaineer. I hope mentoring the EcoCAR3 team will help the university that shaped me and create opportunities for these students that lead to successful futures.”


“I hope mentoring the EcoCAR3 team will help the university that shaped me and create opportunities for these students that lead to successful futures.”

Belyadis make PNGE into a Family Affair BY BERNADETTE DOMBROWSKI

It’s not uncommon to hear about siblings following in each other’s footsteps by enrolling at the same university. But the Belyadi siblings didn’t just choose West Virginia University – they all chose the same major. Today, they are making a substantial mark on the natural gas industry and the school that they consider home. The legacy began 15 years ago when Abbas Belyadi enrolled in the Department of Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering in the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources after visiting a friend in Morgantown. Abbas came to Morgantown from Kuwait, where the rest of his family remained. Two years later, his younger sister, Fatemeh, joined him in Morgantown, beginning at WVU in the Intensive English Program, spending three months learning the English language and American culture. “Adjusting to the United States was a challenge,” said Fatemeh. “But the town and school were very welcoming and helpful, which made the transition a lot easier.”

“We had classes together, we lived together, we studied together,” added Fatemeh. “Having that family atmosphere so far from home really helped and gave us the opportunity to help each other succeed.” And succeed they did. Abbas and Fatemeh both hold bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in petroleum and natural gas engineering, while Zeynab and Hoss hold degrees at the baccalaureate and master’s levels. Abbas is currently working as a reservoir engineer for Alta Mesa Holdings in Houston, Texas, and Zeynab traveled back to Kuwait to work on a joint development project for Schlumberger and Chevron. Hoss works in the Pittsburgh area for CONSOL Energy, specializing in asset evaluation and reservoir engineering, but continues to be a part of the WVU community as an adjunct professor. Fatemeh worked in industry from 2006–2009 after deciding to take a break in schooling, but chose to stay at WVU as a full-time professor after completing her doctorate. Together, the Belyadi family is making its mark on the petroleum and natural gas industry.

David Shaver is a game designer at Respawn Entertainment in Los Angeles, California. Shaver, who earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from WVU in computer science, spent two years at the National Security Agency and then left to pursue his passion for the gaming industry. He moved to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and joined Schell Games to work on Disney games such as Pixie Hollow Online and Pirates of the Caribbean Online. He later joined Zynga LA, where he worked on Empires and Allies and CoasterVille. At Respawn, he worked on the award-winning game Titanfall for PC, Xbox One and Xbox 360. He is currently working on the Titanfall sequel.



As Fatemeh was beginning her course work in engineering, the next Belyadi, Zeynab, enrolled at WVU, followed closely by younger brother, Hoss. By 2005, all four of the Belyadi siblings were studying petroleum and natural gas engineering at various degree levels, all while living under one roof.

“I can’t remember a time when I didn’t want to be an engineer,” said Hoss. “It started with my love of mathematics, and the department really helped steer me in the direction that sparked my interests the most.”

Eric Loth, a 2008 inductee into WVU’s Academy of Distinguished Alumni of Aerospace Engineering, has been named to the “Popular Science” list of 12 “brilliant minds behind the new energy revolution” for his / LOTH work in wind energy. As wind turbines grow larger to increase the amount of energy they can produce, so does the cost to build bigger rotors. Eventually, the large rotors will cost more to produce than the value of the energy they can produce. Loth, the Rolls-Royce Commonwealth Professor of Engineering and director of the Fluid Research and Innovation Lab at the University of Virginia, designed the Morphing Downwind-aligned Rotor, inspired by a palm tree’s ability to bend in strong winds, as a solution to the high cost of typical rotors. Loth earned his bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from the Statler College in 1983. Read more about his invention online at


“Abbas always had something great to say about what he was doing in class or an experience with a professor,” said Fatemeh. “After visiting with some of the PNGE faculty, I decided to switch my focus.”

Hoss credits his family and the variety of courses and informational sessions the department offered for helping him reach his lifelong dream of becoming an engineer.

Lisa Bartanus, corporate training director in continuing education at Piedmont Technical College, was awarded the A. Wade Martin Innovator of the Year Award from the South Carolina Technical Education Association earlier this year. Bartanus earned her bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering from WVU; she is a certified Six Sigma Black Belt and an ASQ Certified Quality Engineer.


Fatemeh had originally planned to attend medical school, having enjoyed her biology courses during high school. That changed after hearing Abbas speak so highly of his professors and courses in PNGE.

“Living with my siblings made WVU feel like my new home, and they were able to help me go through the transition from a young, dependent student to an ambitious and independent professional,” said Hoss.





FALL 2015



After earning her bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from WVU in 1989, Weirton native Anesa Chaibi began her career with General Electric as a member of the chemical and materials leadership

a registered professional engineer in five states, and a member of several professional societies, including the American Society of Civil Engineers, American Council of Engineering Companies and Society of American Military Engineers.

Following the completion of her master’s degree in business administration from Duke University in 1997, Chaibi served as a strategic management consultant with CSC Index. Two years later, she joined GE Corporate Headquarters in Fairfield, Connecticut, as manager of corporate initiatives. She continued to advance at GE, serving as general manager of advanced power systems at GE Digital Energy, general manager of global sourcing for GE Infrastructure and finally general manager of global quality and commercial operations at GE Water and Process Technologies. In 2005, Chaibi joined The Home Depot as president of The Home Depot Supply in San Diego, California. Once the company was divested she was named president and chief executive officer of HD Supply Facilities Maintenance, which she has grown from $840 million in revenue to $2.5 billion through 2014.


In 2004, DiGregorio started IMPACT Professional Services LLC, offering consulting and executive management services. Through IMPACT, he previously served as executive director of TechConnectWV and currently serves as executive director of The Chemical Alliance Zone, a nonprofit group dedicated to advancing the chemical industry across West Virginia. He is a member of the West Virginia Governor’s Marcellus to Manufacturing Task Force and is a director on a number of boards, including MATRIC, the West Virginia Regional Technology Park and TechConnectWV. He also serves on advisory committees for the WVU Department of Chemical Engineering, the West Virginia State University Chemistry Department, BridgeValley Chemical Operator Training Program and the West Virginia Manufacturers Association Chemical Industry Committee.

program at GE Silicones in Waterford, New York. Upon completion of the program, she held a number of positions with GE, including advanced productivity engineer with GE Plastics, operations manager at GE Silicones and global sourcing manager for GE Plastics.

/ ACADEMY OF CIVIL ENGINEERS A native of Fairmont, James W. Hess graduated from WVU with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering in 1966. He enjoyed a 40-year career as a consultant, holding positions of increasing HESS responsibility that led to regional management roles where he was responsible for as many as 450 employees. His primary interest and passion was in the transportation field, where he worked for two firms that were considered to be among the best in the business, Parsons, Brinckerhoff, Quade and Douglas and HDR Engineering. During his career, Hess was involved in some of the most technically challenging, high-profile projects being undertaken in the country. He was


/ ACADEMY OF CHEMICAL ENGINEERS A native of Richwood, Kevin DiGregorio earned his bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in chemical engineering from WVU in 1983, 1985 and 1988, respectively. Upon DIGREGORIO graduation, he joined Union Carbide Corporation, working in its reaction engineering group. He went on to become a change coach and change leader at the Dow Chemical Technical Center in South Charleston, where he also led university relations and recruiting efforts for many years.

/ ACADEMY OF DISTINGUISHED ALUMNI OF AEROSPACE ENGINEERING E. Richard White, who earned his bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from WVU in 1972, is vice president of ViGYAN Inc., which provides engineering analyses, wind WHITE tunnel services and computer support for its government and commercial customers. White is responsible for program management, technical management of engineering and technical personnel, business development and other duties. He previously served as program manager for the Experimental Aeronautics Group of Dynamic Engineering Incorporated, and as a senior specialist engineer at PRC Kentron in Hampton, Virginia, where he worked as a wind tunnel aerodynamicist in support of research activities at several NASA Langley wind tunnels.

/ ACADEMY OF DISTINGUISHED ALUMNI OF MECHANICAL ENGINEERING Richard W. Black recently began his own business in industrial business consulting, Consulting and Coaching, LLC. He previously served as the vice president of fabricated products at Performance BLACK Fibers, a world



Black also served as chief marketing officer at Sigma Group, an industrial manufacturer based in India; as vice president of global sales at Oberg Industries; and with General Electric Plastics Division in a variety of global and domestic roles in marketing, sales leadership, product management and supply chain. He earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from WVU in 1982. Mark F. Reeder is professor of aeronautics and astronautics at the Air Force Institute of Technology where he teaches graduate aeronautical engineering courses in fluid flow, hypersonics, aircraft survivability and the theory of gases, among REEDER others. He has advised more than 30 master’s students and three doctoral students and has served as principal investigator for more than $1 million of externally funded research.

/ ACADEMY OF THE LANE DEPARTMENT OF COMPUTER SCIENCE AND ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING John M. Atkins, professor emeritus of the Lane Department of Computer Science and Electric Engineering and the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources, earned master’s degrees from WVU in mathematics and computer science ATKINS in 1967 and 1980, respectively. He served as a professor of computer science for more than 30 years, teaching undergraduate and graduate computer science courses, principally in the area of database design. Atkins’ research included several projects involving Oracle as well as database normalization theory. He served as principal investigator on a research project to provide support for the West Virginia Workers’ Compensation Division and the West Virginia Insurance Commission. Throughout his career, he published more than 30 technical papers, many in collaboration with other Lane Department faculty. He served as a member of and an advisor to many honorary and technical societies and professional organizations. Later in his career at ManTech International Corporation, Atkins provided specialized expertise and consulting on database architecture, design and development, and database technologies for programs within the Defense Logistics Agency.

Larry Banta Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Dady Dadyburjor Chemical Engineering James Dalton Industrial and Management Systems Engineering Joseph Dorton Mining and Industrial Extension Bonita Helmick Chemical Engineering Wafik Iskander Industrial and Management Systems Engineering Michael Klishis Industrial and Management Systems Engineering Ed Kugler Chemical Engineering


Don McLaughlin Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering



During his 30 years with WVU, Atkins received numerous awards and recognition. He earned the Statler College’s Outstanding Teaching Award twice and an Outstanding Professor Award from WVU’s Eberly College of Arts and Sciences. He received both an Outstanding Teaching Award and Outstanding Service Award from the Lane Department, and he received an outstanding advising award from the University Honors Program. He was named outstanding professor by the Sphinx Senior Honorary and Golden Key National Honorary.

The following people have officially retired from the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources, effective August 2015. We thank them for their years of service.


Reeder is an associate fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, a licensed professional engineer and a member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. He currently serves as editorin-chief for the “International Journal of Micro Air Vehicles,” and he reviews articles for several archival journals, including “Physics of Fluids”. Reeder, who earned his bachelor’s degree from WVU in 1989, has published 32 refereed journal articles and holds four U.S. patents.


leader in the production of industrial polyester fibers and fabrics with operations in North America, Europe and Asia and the second-largest producer of tire cord fabric globally. Black successfully led an investment project doubling the company’s tire cord fabric capacity in China and increasing company global sales by $60 million in less than 18 months. Prior to taking on the Asia role in 2011, he served as vice president of technology, where he drove and coordinated technical strategies for growth and innovation for the company globally.










FALL 2015








DEAR FRIENDS: Since 2012, the Statler College has hired 33 new faculty members, many of whom are highlighted in this year’s annual report. On the pages that follow, you will read about Jason Gross, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, who won a prestigious grant from the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency for work that can help improve the accuracy and robustness of global positioning systems for fast-moving vehicles such as drones. His colleague John Christian was among 57 scientists who will receive a portion of $16.6 million in total grants through the Air Force’s Young Investigator Research program. This issues’ cover story also features another MAE assistant professor, Yu Gu, who led our students to a first place finish and a check for $100,000 in the Sample Return Robot Challenge, part of NASA’s Centennial Challenge.

engineering, and Ashish Nimbarte, assistant professor of industrial and management systems engineering. In each case, the work of these relative newcomers has brought outstanding recognition to the Statler College and West Virginia University. But even more important is the fact that in each case, students from the College work side-by-side with them on these projects. One such student is Colin Frosch, who graduated in May but is returning to WVU to conduct graduate research under the guidance of Avinash Unnikrishnan and David Martinelli in civil and environmental engineering. At press time it was announced that Frosch was the recipient of the highly competitive Dwight David Eisenhower Graduate Fellowship program, which will allow him to continue his research in transportation engineering design and project management.

Your continued support of the students and faculty in the Statler College is crucial if this success is to continue in the years to come.

For the fifth-straight year members of the Statler College faculty have been selected to receive prestigious CAREER awards from the National Science Foundation. Cerasela Dinu, associate professor of chemical engineering, won a CAREER award for her work to identify technologies capable of increasing the world’s energy portfolio while reducing environmental impact. The award comes with more than $500,000 in funding over a five-year period. Dr. Dinu was also recently named associate chair of the department and will lead the College’s new program in biomedical engineering.



Eugene V. Cilento, Glen H. Hiner Dean and Professor


Your continued support of the students and faculty in the Statler College is crucial if this success is to continue in the years to come. As many of you may know, the University’s A State of Minds fundraising effort has been extended through December 2017. To date, the College has raised nearly $157 million toward a University goal of $1 billion. You can support A State of Minds in many different ways, including cash and in-kind donations, pledges, gifts of stocks and bonds and planned gifts. For more information on how you can help, contact Heather Cross, associate director of development, at 304-293-4156 or via email at


Yaser Fallah, assistant professor of computer science and electrical engineering, earned his CAREER award for his work to increase the safety and efficiency of automated vehicles by sharing information over a wireless network. The award comes with more than $400,000 in funding over a five-year period. His colleague Vinod Kulathumani is part of a team working to design, build and test an integrated sensing and communication system for use with ultra-heavy equipment in surface mines. Working with him on the project are Vladislav Kecojevic, professor of mining

Another student who does extensive research with Dr. Dinu, Andy Maloney, is one of three Statler College students who attended the second Global Grand Challenges Summit in Beijing, China. He was joined by Emily Phipps, who is majoring in industrial engineering, and Katie O’Connell, a mechanical engineering major.



Engineering Challenge Camps 2014: 189

Intel International Science and Engineering Fair:




188 38








West Virginia State Fair:

Visits to Statler College: 419



On-campus Outreach:


5,000+ 5,000 1,051

269 25

Undergrad college fairs:





92 27

FALL 2015








336 45







3,740 689 4,429

School Visits: 511




Graduate college fairs:


Events for prospective students:


4,370 Off-campus outreach:





For these students 75% were in the top 25% of their graduating high school class.



30.5 29.6

681 1276



































STATE OF WEST VIRGINIA: 11% $2,317,184








Funded by Asphalt Pavement Association and Contractors Association of West Virginia Position Holder: John Zaniewski, civil and environmental engineering

Funded by Allegheny Power Service Corporation, Appalachian Power Company, Duquesne Light Company, and Virginia Power Position Holder: Ali Feliachi, Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering

Research Interests: asphalt materials, pavement design, pavement management, highway construction



Teaching Interests: asphalt materials, construction materials, construction engineering, pavement management

Research Interests: power systems and controls FELIACHI



Funded by George B. and Carolyn A. Berry Position Holder: Nigel Clark, mechanical and aerospace engineering

Funded by GE Plastics Position Holder: Brian Anderson, chemical engineering

Research Interests: alternative fuels; atmospheric emissions inventory; internal combustion engines; vehicle propulsion, powder, and particle technology; multiphase flows; thermal sciences; energy and efficiency research

Research Interests: natural gas hydrates, nanomaterials, molecular-level design

Teaching Interests: internal combustion engines, thermal sciences, hybrid vehicle technology and diesel engine technology, strength of materials

Teaching Interests: thermodynamics, sustainable energy and development, methods of molecular modeling ANDERSON


CHARLES T. HOLLAND PROFESSOR OF MINING ENGINEERING Funded by Elmo Hurst Position Holder: Keith Heasley Research Interests: numerical modeling, subsidence prediction, pillar design, multiple-seam design, coal bump prevention, instrumentation, longwall mining, mining seismicity

Funded by Carolyn A. Berry Position Holder: Rakesh K. Gupta Research Interests: polymer processing, polymer rheology, polymer composites Teaching Interests: chemical engineering, polymer science

FALL 2015



Teaching Interests: power systems and controls

Teaching Interests: numerical modeling, ground control, longwall mining HEASLEY



Funded by Raymond and Stephanie Lane Position Holder: Brian Woerner, Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering

Funded by Robert E. Murray Position Holder: John A. Herbst, mining engineering; member, National Academy of Engineering

Research Interests: distributed computing and communication systems, multi-antenna communications techniques, low power implementation of signal processing for communications WOERNER

Teaching Interests: communications systems, information theory, signal processing, telecommunications policy

Research Interests: flowsheet and equipment design, mathematical modeling and computer simulation HERBST


CHARLES E. LAWALL ENDOWED CHAIR FOR ENERGY/ENVIRONMENT Funded by Consolidation Coal Company and Glenna R. Pack Position Holder: Syd Peng, mining engineering; member, National Academy of Engineering

Funded by William Samples Position Holder: Karl Barth, civil and environmental engineering Research Interests: finite element modeling, structural stability, bridges, steel members and frames

Research Interests: coal mine ground control, surface subsidence, longwall mining


Teaching Interests: coal mine ground control, longwall mining


Teaching Interests: bridge engineering, structural stability, plastic design of steel structures, behavior of steel members, steel design, structural analysis


MASSEY FOUNDATION PROFESSOR OF MINING ENGINEERING Funded by Massey Foundation Position Holder: Vladislav Kecojevic

Funded by Maurice and JoAnn Wadsworth Position Holder: Hota GangaRao

Research Interests: surface mining, surface mine safety, information technology, environmental issues in surface mining Teaching Interests: surface mining systems, aggregates production, integrated mining systems GANGARAO

Research Interests: design, development, production, and implementation of fiber reinforced polymer composites including recycled polymers for constructed facilities with emphasis on high structures, utility poles, and underground structures




Teaching Interests: mathematical modeling of structural systems response including Fourier transforms and hypergeometric series, dynamic response evaluations through algorithm developments for remaining service-life of structural systems, design of bridge and reinforced concrete members



Teaching Interests: mineral processing, statistics, optimization, computer-centric training



FALL 2015

Cerasela Zoica Dinu, assistant professor of chemical engineering, has earned a prestigious CAREER award from the National Science Foundation for her work to identify technologies capable of increasing the world’s energy portfolio while reducing environmental impact. The award comes with more than $500,000 in funding over a five-year period.


With energy demand rising and the maintenance of supply becoming increasingly problematic, there is a need to build and implement the next generation of materials that can both ensure power generation and guarantee

energy sustainability. Dinu’s project will focus on the development of the next generation of catalytic nanomaterials for energy efficient systems generation.

stability and a prolonged shelf-life for applications ranging from energy conversion, to electrolyzers, fuel cells and for environmental mitigation.”

“These materials can be up to 10,000 times smaller than a human hair,” Dinu said. “They have a controlled morphology and electronic structure that provides the best platform to catalyze chemical transformation.

“Fossil fuels are a finite resource, and we need to find alternatives,” said Rakesh Gupta, professor and George and Carolyn Berry Chair of Chemical Engineering at WVU. “The research proposed by Dr. Dinu and supported by the NSF will help to advance the development of clean and sustainable energy technologies. This work is of vital importance to the country.”

“The nanocatalysts will be designed to have high light absorbance capabilities and emission efficiencies, as well as high corrosion-resistant properties,” said Dinu. “This will ensure enhanced power conversion, selectivity,

For more on Cerasela Zoica Dinu, visit:



» Brian Anderson was appointed director of the WVU Energy Institute. Anderson, who was promoted to professor, was also invited to participate in the 2014 National Academy of Science Frontiers of Science Symposium.

» Enrollment: In fall 2014, 184 undergraduates and 38 graduate students were enrolled in the Department.

» Dady Dadyburjor was named a Fellow of the American Chemical Society. He is the first faculty member from WVU to receive this honor. » Cerasela Zoica Dinu was promoted to associate professor with tenure. » Richard Turton was chair-elect of the WVU Faculty Senate in 2014-2015. He assumed the position of chair in 2015-2016. He was also designated as an Outstanding Teacher in the Statler College for 2014-2015.

» For the first time, WVU’s chemical engineering graduate program was ranked among the top 100 (tied for 94th) in U.S. News & World Report’s ranking of graduate programs. » Three out of 20 Bucklew Scholarship winners in 2015 expressed interest in studying either chemical engineering or biomedical engineering. The Neil S. Bucklew Scholarship is valued at $30,000 and provides students with more than $7,500 per year toward educational costs during four years at WVU and is able to be used in addition to the state’s PROMISE Scholarship. One of the three is also a WVU Foundation Scholar.

» John Zondlo was named Advisor of the Year in the Statler College for 2014-2015.


RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS » Brian Anderson received a $96,500 grant through Cornell University for his work in geothermal energy. ELLIS

» Debangsu Bhattacharyya received a $96,569 grant through Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory for his work in carbon capture simulation.


STUDENT ACCOMPLISHMENTS » Andrew Maloney and Andrew Radcliffe won awards for their undergraduate research posters at the 2014 annual meeting of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers. » Graduate students Reem Eldawud and Yueting Wu won awards for their research posters at the 2014 AIChE annual meeting. Eldawud was also invited to present a poster on her research at the 2015 annual meeting of the Council for Chemical Research. » Andrew Radcliffe received the Professional Promise Award from the Pittsburgh Section of the AIChE. » Jarret Riley was selected to receive a three-year STEM Mountains of Excellence Fellowship by the WVU Office of Graduate Education and Life in fall 2014. Incoming doctoral student Chirag Mevawala was selected to receive the same fellowship beginning in fall 2015.

» John Cordonier was awarded a NASA graduate fellowship in May 2015. » Andrew White secured an Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship in 2015 in the area of research and education in nanotoxicology.

OUTREACH AND RECRUITMENT » The Department hosted its second Plastics Day in September. The event was an opportunity for future chemical engineers to explore the countless facets of plastics and their implementation. » Statler College Ambassadors Erika Allen, Brock Karolcik, Andy Maloney and Andrew White participated in a number of events including Fall Family Weekend; High School Visitation Day; four, WVU open houses; 8th Grade Day; Junior Preview Day; Girl Scout Day; and STEM Day at Morgantown’s Children’s Museum.

» Four chemical engineering students are participating in a water-infrastructure project in the Dominican Republic through Engineers Without Borders. WVU STATLER COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING AND MINERAL RESOURCES


» Jacob Albright is the recipient of a Statler Ph.D. Fellowship.



» John Zondlo is among a team of researchers from WVU that received a grant from the USDA’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiative. The grant is aimed at developing an innovative protein sources for a growing population.



» Hanjing Tian received a $90,515 grant from the National Science Foundation entitled, “Collaborative Research: Multiple-scale Investigation of Chemical Looping Combustion of Coal with Oxygen Carrier Uncoupling.”




FALL 2015

Most kids spend their childhood trying to figure out how to answer the question, “What do I want to be when I grow up?” Realistically, it’s a question most won’t be able to decisively answer for years to come.


Not Colin Frosch. When Frosch was 12 years old, he knew without question that he wanted to be an engineer. “I knew I wanted to major in engineering when I was in middle school,” said Frosch. “All the telltale signs were there: I liked building things, I liked Legos and problem-solving.” Fast-forward 10 years and an impressive collection of accolades later, and Frosch not only graduated with a

civil engineering degree from the Statler College but he was also recognized as a member of the Order of Augusta for his contributions to scholarship, leadership and community service. A big part of Frosch’s childhood aspirations were inspired by his time in Germany, where he lived with his family from second to sixth grade. Through that experience, he discovered not only that he wanted to be an engineer, but exactly what kind of engineer he wanted to become. “When I was living in Germany, it gave me the opportunity to observe their state-of-the-art transportation system,” Frosch said. “I was completely

fascinated by it. Civil engineering was the right fit for me; I knew I wanted to focus my work on transportation and integration.” When Frosch returned to the United States, he brought his interest in transportation systems with him. And when the time arrived to choose a college six years later, Frosch believed the right path to accomplish his goals traveled through Morgantown. For more on Colin Frosch, visit:

» Karl Barth, Udaya Halabe, Leslie Hopkinson, David Martinelli, John Quaranta, Hema Siriwardane, Avinash Unnikrishnan, Jennifer Weidhaas and John Zaniewski received Departmental excellence in teaching awards.


» Fei Dai and P.V. Vijay were selected as 2015 ExCEEd Fellows by the American Society of Civil Engineers. The pair will attend the ExCEEd Teaching workshop, a six-day practicum that provides engineering educators with an opportunity to improve their teaching abilities.

» Enrollment: In fall 2014, 272 undergraduates were enrolled in the Department.

» Antarpreet Jutla was named the Statler College’s New Researcher of the Year, and Leslie Hopkinson was selected as an Outstanding Teacher in the College for 2014-2015.

» One faculty member, Seungho Hong, joined the Department in January 2015.


» David Martinelli was awarded the University’s Nick Evans Award for Advising Excellence. » Avinash Unnikrishnan was the recipient of the 2014 Transportation Research Board’s Fred Burggraf Award, which recognizes the best published paper where the lead author is under 35 years of age. He was also promoted to associate professor and granted tenure.















» Roger Chen recently received a research grant from the West Virginia Department of Transportation for the second phase of a project studying thermal cracking of concrete in bridges.

» The student chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers participates annually in the concrete canoe and steel bridge competitions at the Virginias’ Conference. The concrete canoe team placed second in the women’s endurance, third in the men’s endurance and third in the women’s sprint competitions. The team also won the transportation competition, and finished second in both the Marr Technical Paper and Hardy Cross competitions.

» Other outreach activities involving members of the Department include High School Visitation Day, Merit Badge University, 8th Grade Day and Girl Scout Math and Science Day. WVU STATLER COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING AND MINERAL RESOURCES


» The Structural Engineering Institute student chapter participated in the College’s EngineerFEST, a student organization and academic fair that more than 300 freshman engineering students attended. The chapter displayed multiple glass and carbon fiber reinforced polymer composite products and members were on hand to discuss the latest developments in the field of advanced materials for structures and nondestructive testing and rehabilitation of field structures.


» David Martinelli secured research grants from the West Virginia Division of Highways and the U.S. Department of Transportation to continue into the second phase of two projects dealing with highway safety. The first project deals with the evaluation of school zone traffic control strategies, while the second focuses on the state’s graduated driver’s license program. Assisting him with the research is Avinash Unnikrishnan and Diana Martinelli, associate dean of the WVU Reed College of Media and Widmeyer Professor of Public Relations.





FALL 2015



FRESHMAN ENGINEERING AT A GLANCE » Freshman engineering enrolled a total of 978 (321 engineering, 337 general engineering and 266 preengineering and 54 computer science) first-time, full-time freshmen in 2014-2015. » Four faculty members were added to the staff. Gerald Angle II was hired as a teaching assistant professor, Michael Brewster and Alice Noble were hired as teaching instructors and Joel Alejandro (Alex) Mejia was hired as a tenure track assistant professor of engineering education.




» Freshman engineering faculty collaborated with WVU Academic Innovation and select high school teachers and administrators to teach first-year engineering courses to advanced high school students in the state via the West Virginia ACCESS program. They used the collaborate feature of eCampus; made site visits to high schools; and used their creativity, ingenuity and innovation to overcome issues of snow days and distance to provide this valuable opportunity to West Virginia students. Faculty participating included Alice Noble, Michael Brewster, Ordel Brown and Melissa Morris.

» Robin Anderson was recognized as an Outstanding Staff Member in the Statler College.



» Joel Mejia was awarded the American Educational Research Association Division G Early Career Scholars Program award. » Melissa Morris was awarded the University’s Nicholas Evans Award for excellence in advising. She was also recognized as an Outstanding Advisor in the Statler College. » Michelle Poland was named an Outstanding Advisor in the Statler College. » Lizzie Santiago was promoted to the rank of teaching associate professor. She was also the recipient of an Outstanding Teaching Award from the Statler College and was the College’s Teacher of the Year.



While most students see spring break as a time to relax and get away from schoolwork, a group of West Virginia University engineering students used the week to learn about international engineering in Munich, Germany.


The trip was part of an engineering study abroad course taught by Todd Hamrick, teaching assistant professor of freshman engineering in the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources. Hamrick holds a bachelor’s degree in German, as well as three degrees in mechanical engineering, all from WVU.

» Joel Mejia and Ordel Brown were special awards judges at the 2015 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in May.

» Faculty in freshman engineering were involved in several events in support of Project Lead the Way. In summer 2014, they conducted core training for middle and high school teachers who implemented the PLTW curriculum in their schools. During the fall semester, they hosted a state-wide PLTW conference for K-12 teachers, counselors and administrators with more than 60 in attendance. Faculty participating included Robin Hensel, Joel Mejia, Alice Noble, Michael Brewster, Michelle Poland, Gerald Angle and Todd Hamrick. WVU STATLER COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING AND MINERAL RESOURCES


Read more about the trip at

» Alice Noble served as a judge for the Rapid Fire Research Presentation Competition for the regional Society for Women Engineers Conference held at WVU in February.


“I have traveled abroad many times, but this trip provided opportunities I would never have had if I went on my own,” said Michael Conroy, a sophomore mechanical engineering major from Cincinnati, Ohio. “The engineering perspective of the trip made it a truly once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

» Melissa Morris served as a judge at the West Virginia State Science and Engineering Fair, the State Science Bowl and Trinity High School Science Fair. She also participated in the Mountainview Elementary Science Night, the Children’s Discovery Museum of West Virginia Science Day and serves as the faculty advisor for WVU’s Tau Beta Pi chapter.


“Munich is a technical and cultural hub, which really gave students a well-rounded trip abroad,” said Hamrick. “Nearly every site we visited had a technical component that our students learned from, and many included exclusive tours that aren’t available to the general public and wouldn’t be an option on a recreational trip.”

» Todd Hamrick served as the mechanical team mentor for the Mountaineer Area Robotics team.


FALL 2015




INDUSTRIAL ENGINEERING AT A GLANCE » Enrollment: In fall 2014, 287 undergraduates and 106 graduate students were enrolled in the Department. » WVU’s industrial engineering program was tied at 58th in U.S. News & World Report’s ranking of graduate programs.


» The industrial engineering program was ranked sixth for best value by College Factual, an online guide to the college selection process.

Creating a safe work environment is vital to workers’ health and welfare, and West Virginia University safety management graduate Alexis Claassen thinks it all starts with why we work.

» Kenneth Currie (BSIE ’78, MSIE ’86, PhD ’88) was named chair of the Department of Industrial and Management Systems Engineering on July 31, 2014.

Claassen is an environmental health and safety specialist at PPG Industries’ industrial coatings plant in Oak Creek, Wisconsin. When the company initiated Safety 365, a company campaign to end workplace injuries, Claassen was tasked with making the program fit the plant’s team and culture.


“I wanted our team to remember the reasons they should work safe and why they want to go home at the end of the day,” said Claassen, a native of New Kensington, Pennsylvania. To do so, Claassen asked each employee to write a sentence or phrase about the reasons for wanting to work safe on a dry erase board and take a picture with it. The pictures were then placed around the facility, and each employee was given a copy to attach to their name badge. “There were pictures of everyone hanging around the office, from the chief executive officer to the janitors; everyone’s safety matters, and we wanted to showcase that,” said Claassen, who also compiled the photos into a slide show that played throughout the plant. “People were excited and smiling when they saw themselves and their colleagues in the video, and it really helped raise comradery around the facility knowing that many of us wanted to get home safe for the same reasons.” Claassen’s idea was a huge hit, and PPG’s corporate office took notice. Today, PPG facilities around the world use the idea to promote safety.


STUDENT ACCOMPLISHMENTS » Seniors Clayton Davis and Cassandra Waissenen were recognized as University Scholars. » Michael “Craig” Stearns captured first place in the MidAtlantic Institute of Industrial Engineers Regional Conference in the technical paper competition at Clemson University for his paper entitled, “Process Improvement–Heiner’s Bakery.” This marks the fourth consecutive technical paper competition won by a WVU student.

OUTREACH AND RECRUITMENT » The student chapter of IIE organized its annual Trunk-orTreat event in partnership with the Women’s Basketball Haunted Hoops game on October 31. Organizations across the University handed out candy from the trunks of their vehicles to children in costumes.


“I think what made the idea such a success was the personal engagement,” said Claassen. “No matter what job we work, or where we work in the world, most of us really care about similar things.”

» Ashish Nimbarte was promoted to associate professor and granted tenure.


Read more about Alexis Claassen online at

» Statler College ambassadors representing industrial engineering hosted seven prospective student meetings with individual families. They also participated in Fall Family Weekend; spoke at Manufacturing Day and attended the Statler College alumni tailgate; four WVU Open Houses; High School Visitation Day; and Mountainview Elementary STEM Night. They participated in 8th Grade Day, the Mining Extension Celebration, the Face to Face Morgantown recruitment event, the Greene County College Fair and a visit by fifth graders from Big Elm Elementary School. WVU STATLER COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING AND MINERAL RESOURCES


Claassen takes great pride in making sure employees under her watch make it home to their families after their shift, noting it’s a calling she found while pursuing a bachelor’s degree in psychology at WVU.



FALL 2015

As at least one prototype of a self-driving car prepared to hit the road this summer, one researcher at West Virginia University was already working to find ways to make them safer.


While mainstream use of these vehicles is still a few years away, connecting them to a wireless network would allow them to share real-time information with each other on traffic conditions, roadway hazards and dangerous conditions that they can’t see through other advisories. By taking a cyber-physical systems approach, which considers the interaction of computational, networking and physical processes of a system, Fallah expects to provide the tools needed for enabling cooperation between automated vehicles. “The exchange of information would allow each vehicle to be aware of its surroundings up to few hundred meters away, well beyond what each vehicle – or its driver – could sense,” said Fallah. “This awareness can then be used to control and coordinate the action of these vehicles, which can achieve higher levels of efficiency and safety that would not be possible otherwise. For more about Yaser Fallah visit



Yaser Fallah, assistant professor of computer science and electrical engineering, earned a prestigious CAREER award from the National Science Foundation for his work to increase the safety and efficiency of automated vehicles by sharing information over a wireless network. The award comes with more than $400,000 in funding over a five-year period.



» Enrollment: In fall 2014, 450 undergraduates and 237 graduate students were enrolled in the Department.

» Beth Corcoran was recognized as an Outstanding Staff Member in the Statler College.

FACILITY UPDATES » The Lane Department relocated its academic offices to WVU’s new Advanced Engineering Research Building. The building includes a lecture hall, a computer classroom with dual boot drives to support both Windows and Linux and a learning center. When fully completed in fall 2015, AERB will feature shared research labs and additional academic facilities.

» Thirimachos Bourlai was named an Outstanding Researcher by the Statler College.

» Katerina Goseva-Popstojanova, Xin Li and Natalia Schmid were promoted to the rank of professor.



» David Graham, Yuxin Liu and Afzel Noore received Statler College Outstanding Teacher awards. » Guodong Guo and Yuxin Liu were promoted to the rank of associate professor and awarded tenure.










» The WVU Office of Technology Transfer granted a license for certain biometrics technologies to Confirmix LLC. The company will utilize technologies developed in WVU’s Multispectral Imagery Laboratory by Thirimachos Bourlai and a team of students. The licensed technologies include capabilities for image enhancement and restoration, face and eye detection, task detection and matching and dual-mode and dual-scenario matching.

» Richard Beal and Alex Dilelo received Provost Doctoral Fellowships to support their graduate work.

» Guodong Guo and a team of students have developed a computer vision algorithm that can analyze a photo and predict a person’s body mass index, which is commonly used to classify underweight, overweight and obesity in adults. Guo’s work, which has received accolades from academia, industry and government agencies, is being refined in an effort to make it more robust by using more sources of information from both the human face and body. His research is funded by the National Science Foundation.

» Doctoral student Stephen Itschner received the STEM Mountain of Excellence Fellowship for his work on signal processing for radio astronomy.

» Jacob Tyo received a scholarship from the IEEE Power Electronic Society. » Jerin Young received a scholarship from Lockheed Martin as the winner of a student paper competition.



» For the second straight time, a team of WVU students has been selected to compete in the DOE’s Solar Decathlon, scheduled for October in Irvine, California. The team is advised by Dimitris Korakakis and Cindy Tanner.


» Faculty in the Lane Department are collaborating with faculty in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering on the launch of a NASA CubeSat satellite, which will be used to study the performance and durability of III-V Gallium Nitride electronic materials. The experiment is designed by Dimitris Korakakis and Jeremy Dawson.

» Orlando Madrigal received a scholarship from the Upsilon Pi Epsilon computer honorary society.


» Xin Lin and a team of students have received an NSF grant to further his work in the area of collective sensing, which allows for the efficient identification and use of specific types of information that is needed by users. Li’s work takes into account human perception in determining how to extract information from a sensor network.

» Students from the Lane Department are participating in WVU’s entry into the U.S. Department of Energy’s EcoCAR3 competition. Yaser Fallah serves as a team advisor.



Jason Gross, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, has won a prestigious grant from the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency for work that can help improve the accuracy and robustness of global positioning systems for fast-moving vehicles such as drones. Gross will receive the two-year, $200,000 grant, with optional funding for a third year, as part of the agency’s New Investigator Program.


The use of GPS has become commonplace in everyday life. Its use, or in some cases overuse, is also of concern for the U.S. Department of Defense where the stakes can be much higher. GPS jamming, Gross said, happens when someone broadcasts a powerful signal in the same part of the radio spectrum that GPS uses, making the signals unavailable. GPS spoofing happens when someone sends out a signal that mimics real GPS signals, but contains false information, which tricks the receiver into thinking it is somewhere else.

FALL 2015

“The potential for malicious signal jamming and spoofing has become the focus of a great deal of research activity,” Gross said. “Researchers are looking to the use of alternatives to GPS for precise navigation and timekeeping.”



For more information on Jason Gross visit






STUDENT ACCOMPLISHMENTS » Berk Demirgok was selected to make an oral presentation at the 35th International Combustion Symposium in San Francisco, California. SOLLEY




» A student chapter of Material Advantage was chartered on February 18. The first student officers are Kathleen O’Connell, president; Brian Armour, vice president; Gunes Yakaboylu, treasurer; and Jonathan Yancey, secretary. Edward Sabolsky is the faculty advisor. » Kathleen O’Connell received the award for best undergraduate research paper at the Materials Science and Technology Conference.

» Enrollment: In fall 2014, 602 undergraduates and 146 graduate students were enrolled in the Department.

CURRICULUM CHANGES » The Department was instrumental in the creation of a College-wide graduate program in materials science and engineering. The program was being offered at the master’s and doctoral levels beginning in the fall semester of 2015.

» Ross Ryskamp was awarded a STEM Mountains of Excellence Scholarship from the Office of Graduate Education and Life at WVU. The scholarship is valued at $5,000. He will be researching how shale gas can be utilized in internal combustion engines efficiently and in an environmentally responsible manner. » Hayru Sezer and Wenyuan Li were recipients of the Dr. Bernard S. Baker Student Researcher Award for fuel cell research.

FACULTY AND STAFF ACCOMPLISHMENTS » Marvin Cheng received the Department’s Weaver Award for outstanding teaching of mechanics courses. » John Christian was among 57 scientists who will receive a portion of $16.6 million in total grants through the Air Force’s Young Investigator Research Program. The funding will be awarded over a three-year period. He was also named New Researcher of the Year in the Statler College. » Xingbo Liu was chosen as the Statler College’s Researcher of the Year and Yu Gu was chosen as an Outstanding Researcher. » Nithi Sivaneri and David Solley were named Outstanding Advisors in the Statler College.

» Deborah Willis was recognized as an Outstanding Staff Member in the Statler College.

» More than 350 teams participated in the annual Pumpkin Drop. First place went to Frankfort High School, with Suncrest Middle School and Feed My Sheep Christian School finishing second and third, respectively. The event raised $4,000 for Ronald McDonald House.

» Jonathan Yancey earned an Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education Fellowship at the Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory. He presented research funded by this fellowship at both the Materials Science and Technology and Applications Conference in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and the International Conference on Advanced Ceramics and Composites in Daytona, Florida.



» Kostas Sierros and John Christian served as judges for the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Sierros and Terence Musho served as judges for the West Virginia State Science and Engineering Fair held in Fairmont.

» West Virginia Academy of Science Awards were presented to Orlando Ugarte (best graduate presentation and first place in math), Serdar Bilgili (first place in engineering and third place in math) and Sril Hari RamaKrishna Chalagalla (second place in engineering).



» Jonathan Taub, president of the WVU student chapter of the Society for the Advancement of Materials and Process Engineering, won the organization’s 2015 Student Leader Experience Award.


» Scott Wayne received the Outstanding Teacher Award from the MAE Academy of Distinguished Alumni.

» Student-led teams participated in a number of national competitions including AIAA’s Design/Build/Fly competition (finished 33rd out of 65 teams); AMSE’s Human Powered Vehicle competition (17th out of 31 teams); SAE’s Formula Race Car competition (59th out of 110 teams); and SAE’s Mini-Baja competition (53rd out of 100 teams).





Mention Sago, Aracoma and Upper Big Branch to a miner, and memories of lives lost quickly cloud their faces. That is especially true for Eugene White, director of the West Virginia Office of Miners’ Health, Safety and Training, who participated in rescue operations at each of those mining disasters. “Sago changed me. UBB changed me,” said White, who has spent more than 42 years in the industry. “But those events, along with Aracoma, also changed the industry and the role of mine rescue teams.” It also changed how those teams are trained. and for many, that training happens at the West Virginia University’s Academy for Mine Training and Energy Technologies, which opened its simulated underground coal mine in 2009.

FALL 2015

White and his team of mine rescue volunteers – totaling about 25 – were at the WVU facility outside of Morgantown for training in May. The WVU facility is one of only two in the state that offers live fire training in an underground atmosphere.


“The heat inside the facility is something you will experience at a real event and here, at the WVU facility, you get heat,” said White. “Our state guys probably practice together in smoke more than any other team in the state. They actually feel the heat and that is something that is real life.” White should know. According to Jim Dean, director of mining and industrial extension, White’s experience at the Aracoma Alma mine

in 2006 taught him how valuable this type of training can be to a rescue team. “Eugene was actually with the state mine rescue team at Aracoma, which was a fire incident,” said Dean. “He can tell you that the heat at Aracoma was extremely intense. The rescuers had never trained in that type of condition. At that time, there wasn’t a facility that provided this type of training and exposure.” “If you have a fire underground and you don’t have it under control in about an hour, you’re in trouble,” said White, who noted that in the past, rescue teams learned how to respond to fires through on-the-job training. “The heat is a good thing,” White added. “You look at the guys training today and when they come out of the mine they’re tired; they’re worn out. Many of our inspectors are older guys, so we always have that concern whether they’re physically going to be able to do it and how long they can do it. The physical conditions and the realism this facility provides are really significant.”

1,35 2 1,14 7 466

CLASSES July 1, 2014-June 30, 2015

Self-Contained Self-Rescuer First Responder Fire Advanced Fire Brigade




Mine Rescue


Mine Foreman

81 55

Specialty Emergency Response


40-Hour Surface


80-Hour Apprentice


Basic Fire Brigade

3,75 5



Since 1997, the West Virginia Manufacturing Extension Partnership, has helped West Virginia businesses improve competitiveness in local and global markets, and has been an integral part of industrial extension.

“When you are busy running a business you often overlook these things,” Biser added. “We can find opportunities during the E3 assessment that reduce a company’s bottom line through reduced operating and energy costs.”

One of the key services delivered by WVMEP is the E3 Assessment (energy, environment, economy). This service package includes a lean manufacturing process assessment, an energy use assessment, a review of environmental programs and a carbon footprint analysis at no cost to the participating client company.

The comprehensive assessment can deliver significant saving opportunities to clients. One such client is Phillips Machine. Headquartered in Beckley, the company manufactures equipment for the mining industry and, due to a downturn in the industry, they were looking for ways to save money.

WVMEP partners with WVU’s Industrial Assessment Center to provide the energy assessment portion of the study. Also housed in the Statler College, the IAC is an energy conservation initiative of the U.S. Department of Energy.

New Jobs Created


Retained Sales


Retained Jobs


Investments in New Processes, Equipment, Training, IT, other

Client Employees Trained


,00 5 5 2 ,

,800 7 7 5 $4, ,500 4 3 ,2 $12 986

system that, when fixed, rendered cost savings for the company. “We have done several projects at Phillips Machine,” Biser said. “We have and continue to provide various training classes in health and safety. We’ve also worked with them on diversifying their markets, and we had a long-term project with them to prepare them for their International Standards Organization 9001 quality certification. We continue to support their ISO program through ongoing audits throughout the year.



“They gave us suggestions on how we can improve our operation by using LED lights,” Jones said. “While the lights are more expensive upfront, they burn longer and brighter. We put them in areas we had some issues with and are seeing positive results. They also looked at leaking valves in the compressed air



Having a company’s processes examined by an outside party, Biser said, is an excellent way to find inefficiencies and improvement opportunities.

The WVMEP team, led by Biser and Dave Carrick, industrial extension engineer, checked everything from the spacing and output of lights in the company’s shops to its compressed air and HVAC systems.

New Sales Generated

Operations Cost Savings


,00 5 8 1 ,


“These assessments are provided at zero cost to the client, thanks to a grant from the West Virginia Division of Energy,” said Gerald Biser, director of industrial extension and the WVMEP. “A company gets a complete evaluation of their manufacturing processes and of their energy systems with recommendations to improve both, for zero cost.”

“Energy use here is massive,” said John Jones, environmental safety and quality manager. “I’ve worked with WVMEP before and I thought by working with them again we might have a good chance to have some impactful benefits.”



MINING ENGINEERING AT A GLANCE » Enrollment: In fall 2014, 109 undergraduates and 27 graduate students were enrolled in the Department.


FALL 2015

The number and severity of injuries associated with the use of ultraheavy equipment in surface mines is a persistent safety concern. A cross-disciplinary team of faculty and students at West Virginia University is working to ease those concerns.


Vinod Kulathumani, associate professor of computer science and electrical engineering, Vladislav Kecojevic, professor of mining engineering, and Ashish Nimbarte, assistant professor of industrial and management systems engineering, have designed, built and tested an integrated sensing and communication system that has two

parts: proximity warning and collision avoidance and driver fatigue and distraction monitoring. “Timely proximity warning continues to be a serious problem for surface mines simply because of the size of the equipment and the huge momentum generated that reduces the time available to react,” said Kulathumani. The proximity warning system uses low-power radio waves for obstacles and vehicles less than 15 meters away. The system does not have line-ofsight restrictions or blind spots, unlike ultrasonic sensors and cameras. A global positioning system integrated

with Wi-Fi radios in ad-hoc mode was also designed to give warning about vehicles approaching from greater distances. In ad-hoc mode, no cellular or global network is needed to transmit the data to a central unit, Kulathumani said, making warning about approaching vehicles available as soon as they are in range. For more about the team’s work, visit



» Aaron Noble developed a new technical elective on Mine Pollution Control, which was offered in fall 2014. The course covers regulatory and engineering design principles associated with mining environmental issues. The course was offered through an online platform and may be deployed as a distance education course in the future. » Faculty in mining engineering were involved in the development of the Statler College’s new master’s degree in energy systems engineering, which will be offered for the first time in fall 2015. The program, designed for students with undergraduate degrees in engineering or a closely related STEM field, will provide students opportunities to expand their skills relative to the production, conversion, transmission and utilization of energy, carbon-based and “green” energy, renewable or alternate energy sources, energy storage, modeling and simulation of energy systems and critical materials for energy generation and utilization. KECOJEVIC

» Vladislav Kecojevic received the Prazen Award for serving as the 2015 program chair for the Society for Mining, Metallurgy and Exploration. He also served as the 20142015 president-elect for the International Society of Mining Professors; was appointed to the board of directors for the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, SME section; and was appointed to the international editorial board of Technologia Minera in Peru. Kecojevic also won the 2015 WVU SME Student Chapter Award. The award recognizes the faculty member in mining engineering who has demonstrated superior dedication to the mining profession and offers a challenging atmosphere for student growth and development. » Brijes Mishra was promoted to associate professor and granted tenure. » Aaron Noble received the SME Stefanko Best Paper Award for his conference paper, “Micro-Price Optimization of Coal Blending and Processing Operations.” » Felicia Peng worked with the Northern West Virginia Coal Preparation Society to establish a scholarship fund for the mining engineering program. The Society now awards scholarships, ranging from $2,500-$4,500 annually, to students who attended high schools or live within a 100-mile radius of the Statler College’s Mineral Resources Building and have an interest in coal and mineral processing.






» Brijes Mishra and Aaron Noble are part of a research team that was granted a new contract under the NASA Early Stage Innovation awards. Their project seeks to implement nondestructive techniques for the robotic characterization of asteroid material in space.

» Emily Figer, Steve Mayo and Julia Reichardt tied for first place for the 2014 SME/Pittsburgh Coal Mining Institute of America Senior Design Award with their “Bubba Gump” longwall mine plan in Alabama. They received a $750 award at the annual SME/ PCMIA student luncheon on October 23, 2014.

» David Kuegler served as a Statler College Ambassador, representing the Department at a number of events including the 100th Anniversary Celebration of Mining Extension; four WVU Open Houses; High School Visitation Day; Girl Scout Day; 8th Grade Day; and the West Virginia Coal Mining Institute.

» Undergraduates Daniel Ridenour and Michael Sustar were named Outstanding Seniors at WVU.

» New triaxial creep equipment was added to the Rock Mechanics Laboratory. The system is designed to test long-term strength of two- and three-inch rock core specimens. The system can provide different confining pressure for simulating in-situ rock stress condition and is designed to maintain constant load without electrical power.



» Graduate student Hassan Amini won second place in the SME Processing Division student poster contest at the annual meeting in February. His poster presented his research on the use of silica-based media in coal cleaning for the solar cell industry.



» Brijes Mishra is investigating post-failure behavior of coal measure rocks, which will generate input properties for numerical modeling. His work is being funded by a grant from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.

» Weston Fortner, Tyler Jackson and Jonathon Chmelik placed third in the annual 2014 Carlson Senior Design Award. They received their award at the joint fall meeting of the Kentucky Coal Association and the Central Appalachian Section of the SME.





FALL 2015

Shelby Chapman from Buckhannon was one of eight students to be honored with the Order of Augusta, West Virginia University’s most prestigious student honor. She is among 45 students who were also named WVU Foundations Outstanding Seniors.


A member of the Honors College, Chapman graduated with a degree in petroleum and natural gas engineering. She was a four-year member of the WVU Marching Band, and she was named the assistant drum major her junior year.

She was a member of the honorary band fraternity Kappa Kappa Psi, the Alpha Omega Engineering Sorority and an active student officer of the WVU student chapter of the Society of Petroleum Engineers. Chapman tutored freshman students in physics, chemistry and math at the Engineering Learning Center, and was a WVU Academic Student Success coach. Chapman spent two of her summers working as an intern. In 2013, she worked as the first female production engineer with EQT in Pikeville,

Kentucky, and in 2014 she worked as a reservoir engineer with Chevron in Houston, Texas. Her research was integrated into Chevron’s business development plan. “My experiences working various jobs and internships have helped me to develop myself as a professional ready for the workplace,” she said. “I can honestly say I do not feel my success at West Virginia University could be replicated at any other university. The opportunities that I’ve been given are beyond comprehension sometimes.”




PETROLEUM AND NATURAL GAS ENGINEERING AT A GLANCE » Enrollment: In fall 2014, 367 undergraduates and 47 graduate students were enrolled in the Department. » The Department is one of only three accredited petroleum and natural gas engineering departments in the country. » Several new faculty members joined the Department including Fatemeh Belyadi (teaching assistant professor) and adjuncts Hoss Belyadi, Zachary Toothman, Reed Robinson and Josh Dalton.


FACULTY AND STAFF ACCOMPLISHMENTS » Kashy Aminian was named the Department’s Outstanding Faculty Member by WVU student chapter of the Society of Petroleum Engineers. » Ali Takbiri Borujeni was named the 2015 SPE Outstanding Faculty Member of the Eastern region. » Ebrahim Fathi was the recipient of the 2014 American Institute of Mining, Metallurgical and Petroleum Engineers Rossiter W. Raymond Memorial Award. The award recognizes the best paper published by AIME societies’ members where the lead author is under 35 years of age.


» Doctoral student Tawfik Elshehabi earned second-place in this year’s American Association of Drilling Engineers student paper contest. The event was held in San Antonio, Texas.

OUTREACH AND RECRUITMENT » Three students – Bruce Ensley, Sarah Harbert and Tyrone Swen – served as Statler College Ambassadors. The trio represented the Department at the 100th Anniversary Celebration of Mining Extension, High School Visitation Day, 8th Grade Day, Junior Preview Days, Merit Badge University and as judges at Cheat Lake Elementary School’s Science Fair.



Established in 1995 to signify the 40th anniversary of the WVU Foundation, the Outstanding Seniors award recognizes students for their contributions and achievements in scholarship, leadership and service.

» Doctoral student Mohammad Kazemi earned a second-place award in the SPE Eastern Student Paper contest held at Penn State University. Seven students were chosen from dozens of applicants and were allowed 20 minutes to present their research to a panel of judges.


Chapman graduated as a Presidential Honors Scholar and joined Chevron in Bakersfield, California, following graduation. She plans to eventually pursue a master’s degree in business and one day teach at WVU.

The Order of Augusta further recognizes the students’ superior scholarship, demonstrated leadership and record of community and public service. The award is named for its historical significance in the state. Augusta was among the original names considered by the Legislature when the state seceded from Virginia in 1863.



She was the recipient of the PROMISE Scholarship, Rhododendron Scholarship, Alexander Hardy Tait Scholarship and a two-time recipient of the West Virginia Desk and Derrick Scholarship, among others.

» The Department enjoys relationships with private partners in the oil and gas industry, which help to make facility upgrades possible. The Natural Gas Measurement Laboratory developed as a result of the Department’s partnerships with Dominion Transmission and Eagle Research Corporation. A grand opening of this lab is slated for the fall semester. Additional contributions were made to the development of the drilling fluids laboratory by Mark Leidecker of Jesmar Energy Inc. The lab has been renamed in honor of his father and uncles as the Leidecker Brothers Drilling Fluids Laboratory.






STATLER COLLEGE WORKS TO FORM RESEARCH PARTNERSHIPS IN A SHARING ECONOMY While the idea of a sharing economy (think Uber, Airbnb) may be new to some people and industries, researchers at universities have been working in such an environment – where they share expertise, experiences and infrastructure – for years. And while economics drove previous iterations, the motivating factor for such collaboration now comes from the interdisciplinary solutions needed to solve today’s complex engineering problems.

FALL 2015

Challenges in areas such as energy, advanced materials and manufacturing, healthcare, data analytics and intelligent transportation systems all have one thing in common: they demand the attention of a multifaceted team working in a shared research infrastructure in partnership with other public and private entities.


Staff in the Office of the Associate Dean for Research in the Statler College have been working to create a culture in which faculty are encouraged and supported with resources that allow them to develop new and larger interdisciplinary programs.




NETWORKING OPPORTUNITIES = PARTNERSHIPS Through a series of networking opportunities, faculty in the Statler College have formed partnerships with colleagues in other parts of WVU’s campus. One series of events, led by Laura Gibson, senior associate vice president for health sciences research and graduate education at WVU’s Health Sciences Center, and Sally Hodder, director and principal investigator of the West Virginia Clinical and Translational Science Institute, connected faculty to funding opportunities for creative research. One example is the Byars-Tarnay Endowment in the WVU Foundation, which was established to build biomedical engineering programs for the Statler College with the WVU School of Medicine. Using a seed grant, Nick Wu, professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, is also working with his HSC counterparts on the development of nano-based sensor technology that can detect biomarkers for detection of lung cancer.

FORMATION OF CENTERS Partnerships between academia, industry and government can often lead to the formation of a center or institute, where the focus is on interdisciplinary and translational research that meets societal needs. The Constructed Facilities Center at WVU was created to foster and conduct research and development vital to the rehabilitation of our nation’s constructed facilities. Directed by Hota GangaRao, Maurice A. and Jo Ann Wadsworth Distinguished Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, CFC researchers study ways in which they can help reduce or remedy deterioration of transportation infrastructure. Major areas of emphasis for the Center include the development of composite and hybrid material components and systems for bridges and buildings, construction of reinforced plastic composites for building and development of nondestructive evaluation techniques and tools. The support for this Center comes from the private sector and such public sources as the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and West Virginia Department of Transportation. NESBIT

GROWING ESTABLISHED PROGRAMS Another area in which the Statler College is expanding its research efforts is through the growth of already established programs.




Another example of an interdisciplinary research program comes in the form of a project led by Parviz Famouri, professor in Lane Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, and Nigel Clark, George Berry Chair and professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering and associate vice president of academic strategic planning. The duo lead a team of faculty and industry representatives that have received $2 million in funding from ARPA-E for generators for small electrical and thermal systems. This type of linear engine technology could enable a distributed system for combined heat and power systems for residential applications.

Other centers in the Statler College include the Center for Alternative Fuels Engines and Emissions, which works exclusively on emission reduction research, and the Industrial Assessment Center, which provides no-cost energy assessments to small and mid-sized manufacturers. WVU’s newest initiative, the WVU Energy Institute, is leading efforts to coordinate and promote university-wide energy research in engineering, science, technology and policy. The Institute is led by Brian Anderson, GE Plastics Material Engineering Professor of Chemical Engineering.


One such example is the formation of a new energy research program funded by the Advanced Research Project Agency for Energy, also known as ARPA-E. Xingbo Liu, professor and associate chair of research in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, was part of a project team that was awarded approximately $3.8 million for the development of transformative technology for thin film-based solid oxide fuel cells operating at relatively low temperatures. Joining him on the project are representatives from Materials and Systems Research Inc., Bio2Electric and North Carolina State University. The ARPA-E grant was the first ever awarded to WVU.

Another example is the Center for Identification Technology Research, an NSF Industry/University Cooperative Research Center. Led by Matthew Valenti, professor of computer science and electrical engineering, researchers at CITeR focus on advancing identification technology in the areas of biometric systems, security and credibility assessment. Affiliates include the U.S. Department of Defense, the FBI, Lockheed Martin and the National Security Agency.



From summer camps to school visits to the West Virginia State Fair, the staff in outreach and recruitment work tirelessly to spread the word that engineering can be a fun and rewarding career. They also represent the College at student recruitment events hosted on and off campus by WVU. Accompanied by Statler College Ambassadors – students representing each academic department – they travel across the country in hopes of grooming the next generation of students who will attend WVU.

JULY 2014

Pumpkin Drop

July 6-11: Growing Roots in STEM All-Female Camp July 7-11: Middle School Camp July 9: Health Sciences Technology Academy Career Fair July 13-18: Sustainability Camp July 16: Health Sciences Technology Academy Career Fair July 20-25: Engineering in Action Camp July 28-August 1: Elementary Day Camps July 30: 50 7th-11th Graders Dubai Baseball Team Visit STEM AMBASSADORS at 4H Camps

STEM AMBASSADORS at 4H Camps August 1-2: 24-hour robotics event at WVU Rec Center and college fair. August 8-16: West Virginia State Fair August 19: Transfer Student Welcome Reception

FALL 2015

SEPTEMBER 2014 September 10: WVU Graduate and Professional School Fair September 16: Face to Face, Parkersburg and Speak Up North Elementary Talented and Gifted Program September 21-22: Big 10 Graduate School Exposition, West Lafayette, Indiana September 23: Berkeley, Jefferson and Morgan Counties College Fair; Face to Face with WVU, Eastern Panhandle; Rose Hulman Graduate Fair, Terre Haute, Indiana September 24: School Visit to Bruceton School September 29: Wheeling Area College Fair September 30: Face to Face with WVU, Wheeling


Cheat Lake Elementary Science Fair NESBIT


Elementary School Day Camps

OCTOBER 2014 October 2: Tau Beta Pi Annual Convention and Graduate Fair, Seattle, Washington October 6: Face to Face with WVU, Charleston; Huntington Area College Fair; Kanawha County College Fair; and Manufacturing Day School Presentations October 8: 5th Graders from Johnson Elementary Visit October 10: 5th Graders from Big Elm Visit and School Visit to Doddridge County October 11: NASA Space Day at West Virginia Wesleyan October 13: Outreach Visit to Notre Dame in Clarksburg October 14: 5th Graders from St. Francis Visit, Monongalia, Preston and Taylor Counties College Fair and Outreach Visit to Fairmont Catholic October 15: Barbour, Lewis and Upshur Counties College Fair and Odyssey Day October 17: School Visit to Doddridge County October 19: Fairfax County (Virginia) Public Schools College Fair October 20: Frankfort High School Career Day and School Visit to Frankfort High School Project Lead the Way Classes October 21: Face to Face with WVU, Morgantown October 23-26: Society of Women Engineers Graduate College Fair and Annual Conference, Los Angeles, California October 24-25: Pumpkin Drop October 28: Face to Face with WVU, Beckley October 30-November 1: SREB Recruitment Event in Atlanta, Georgia

NOVEMBER 2014 November 5: Judges at Cheat Lake Elementary Science Fair November 5-9: Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers Graduate Fair and National Conference, Detroit, Michigan November 6-7: SciTECH Days at Carnegie Science Center, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania November 8: Science Days at the Children’s Museum November 10: West Virginia Distinguished Scholars Celebration November 12: 9th Graders from George Washington High School Visit November 14-17: National Society of Black Engineers Regional Conference and Graduate Fair November 15: Discover WVU Open House and EQT Scholars of Excellence Reception November 20: Greene County Consortium of School District College, Career and Scholarship Fair

DECEMBER 2014 December 5: Met with PLTW students at Statler College, and Virginia School Counselor Reception and WVU Colleges Tour December 6: High School Visitation Day December 18: Lincoln County Robotics Team Visits

FEBRUARY 2015 February 2: Admitted Student Day Tours February 5-6: Pittsburgh NACAC College Fair February 6: WVU Regional Science Bowl February 6-8: SWE Region G Conference and Graduate Fair February 7: Science Bowl College Fair February 9: Admitted Student Day Tours February 11: School Visit to East Fairmont High School February 13: WVU Day at the Legislature February 14: Merit Badge University February 16: Academic Excellence Celebration February 20-22: SWE Region E Conference and Graduate Fair February 22-28: Essay Competition for Engineers Week February 23: Admitted Student Day Tours February 25: School Visit to North Elementary February 26: Society of American Military Engineers College Fair February 26-March 1: SHPE Region IV Conference and Graduate Fair, Alexandria, Virginia February 28: Murder Mystery Lunch and TEAMS Competition

JANUARY 2015 January 13: Judges at Bruceton School Science Fair January 28: Wetzel County STEM Championships January 30: School Visit to Doddridge County West Virginia State Fair

MARCH 2015 March 4: Undergraduate Research Day at the Capitol March 7: Experience WVU Open House March 9: Admitted Student Day Tours March 10: Southern Fulton (PA) School Visits March 14: High School Visitation Day March 25-29: National Society of Black Engineers Annual Conference and Graduate Fair, Anaheim, California March 28: West Virginia State Science and Engineering Fair March 30-31: Junior Preview Day

APRIL 2015

Engineering in Entertainment Camp

May 11-15: International Science and Engineering Fair in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania May 26-27: Judges at North Elementary Science Fair May 28: Scholarship Presentations at Lincoln and Clay Battelle High Schools

JUNE 2015

| June 2: Terra Alta Elementary School Science Night June 3: Valley Elementary School Science Night June 8: School Visit to Potomac Elementary 5th Grade Gifted Program June 10: Bruceton Mills School 5th Grade End-of-the-Year STEM Celebration June 18: BOPARC STEM Visits June 21-26: Engineering in Entertainment Camp



April 1-2, 6: Junior Preview Days April 7: Bucklew Scholarship Reception April 9, 13, 16, 23, 27: Conducted Calling Campaign to Prospective Students April 9: School Visit to North Elementary Second Grade TAG April 11: Experience WVU Day April 13: Bruceton School Family STEM night and School Visit to South Middle School April 13, 20: Admitted Student Day Tours April 15: Mylan Park 8th Grade Career Fair April 16-18: National Conferences on Undergraduate Research Graduate Recruitment, Cheney, Washington April 17: Brookhaven Elementary STEM Night April 18: 8th Grade Day April 22: Mylan Park Elementary Visits (Earth Day) April 24: Mountainview Elementary Science Night and School Visit at Doddridge County April 25: Girl Scout Day

MAY 2015



Doddridge County School Visit


Intel International Science and Engineering Fair



George and Camilla “Mimi” Bennett and Consol Energy were among the recipients of the West Virginia University Foundation’s 2015 Outstanding Philanthropy awards. The awards, first presented in 2005, were established to honor donors who display exceptional generosity, commitment, leadership and proven records of outstanding civil and charitable devotion to WVU. “We congratulate this year’s award winners for their willingness to give in so many ways from financial support to leadership to time and talent,” said Cindi Roth, WVU Foundation president and CEO. “They continue to go above and beyond in their commitment and generosity to the University, and have set a standard of excellence for others to model. We honor the recipients with sincere gratitude and a deep appreciation for all they do for WVU.”

FALL 2015

George and Camilla “Mimi” Bennett, named the Milan Puskar Outstanding Philanthropists, were honored for their history of generosity and loyalty to WVU. George has been building innovationdriven businesses for more than 40 years. In 2011, he co-founded Good Measures, LLC, a provider of registered dietician services, and currently serves as its chairman and CEO. A native of Morgantown, George earned a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering from WVU in 1967, and continued his


education at Carnegie Mellon University where he earned both his master’s and doctorate in industrial administration.

product development building training programs for business in sales, service, management and leadership.

George served as a member of the Grace Commission in the 1980s, a panel created by former President Ronald Reagan to bring state-of-the-art business practices to federal government. He remains active in Washington in the ongoing healthcare reform debate.

A graduate of Pine Manor College, Camilla co-founded and chaired the board of the Trinity Boston Foundation, whose mission is to change the odds for at risk youth by preparing them for college. She is a member of Golden Seeds, one of the nation’s most active early stage investment firms, and is active in her local community.

George serves, or has served, on the board of directors of a number of organizations, including the Care Continuum Alliance and the National Youth Science Foundation. George is a member of WVU’s Academy of Distinguished Alumni and WVU Distinguished Alumni Academy of Industrial and Management Systems Engineering. In 2011, he received an honorary degree from WVU. Last year, he was inducted into the West Virginia Business Hall of Fame. Mr. Bennett is a member of the State of Minds National Campaign Committee and the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources Campaign Committee. Camilla’s business career began at the Putnam Management Company in the early 1970s and culminated at the Forum Corporation, where she oversaw

The Bennetts’ generous gifts to WVU have primarily benefitted the Statler College and the College of Business and Economics. They are members of the Woodburn Circle Society, the WVU Foundation’s highest level of donor recognition. They reside in Brookline, Massachusetts, and on Martha’s Vineyard. Recognized as the Outstanding Philanthropic Corporation, CONSOL Energy was honored for its charitable giving to WVU and commitment to enhance the areas and people it serves. A publicly traded producer of natural gas and coal, CONSOL is one of the leading diversified energy companies in the nation. The company is one of the largest independent natural


gas exploration, development and production companies, with operations centered in the major shale formations of the Appalachian basin. Its premium coals are sold to electricity generators and steel makers, both domestically and internationally. Since 1864, CONSOL has powered the nation with affordable, abundant, reliable domestic energy. Today, CONSOL’s employees help generate the fuels – natural gas and coal – that comprise two-thirds of the nation’s power supply. Its energy supports the American way of life by helping deliver electricity 24/7, creating family-sustaining jobs and keeping our nation competitive in the global marketplace.


Mark Leidecker was looking for a way to forever tie his families’ name to the oil and gas industry. On May 8, that dream became a reality with the dedication of the Leidecker Brothers Drilling Fluids Laboratory in West Virginia University’s Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources. A 1971 graduate of WVU with a degree in petroleum engineering, Leidecker followed his father and many of his relatives into the industry. “My dad had 11 brothers and sisters and according to one of my aunts, someone from the family was always involved in the oil and gas business,” said Leidecker, president of Jesmar Energy Inc., in Holbrook, Pennsylvania. “I’m the only one left, and I was looking for a way to ensure my family’s name lived on in the industry.”

The drilling fluids lab, housed in the Department of Petroleum and Natural

“The drilling fluids lab is a unique feature of the department that helps to ensure WVU graduates are wellprepared and at the forefront of innovation for the petroleum and natural gas industry,” said Ameri. “Our department and faculty work hard to foster strong relationships with our friends and colleagues in industry and we greatly appreciate the support and generosity of Mr. and Mrs. Leidecker.” Leidecker has spent more than 40 years in the industry, working with companies ranging from Halliburton to Equitable Gas to CONOCO, where he conducted research in coal gas reservoirs. In 1989, he and his wife formed Jesmar Energy, designing gas gathering systems for extracting methane from coal seams and minedout areas. He continues to be active in the industry as a consultant.



Leidecker and his wife, Jessie, also a WVU graduate, chose to name the Statler College’s drilling fluids laboratory in honor of his father’s company, Leidecker Brothers, which owned a number of shallow oil wells in the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, area.

Gas Engineering, is equipped with drilling fluid analysis instruments commonly used in the field. Students are taught standard techniques for preparing and measuring drilling fluids properties. According to department Chair Sam Ameri, funds from the gift will go toward securing cutting-edge equipment to further outfit the lab.


A member of the Foundation’s Woodburn Circle Society, CONSOL’s contributions to WVU have spanned more than three decades and benefited many areas including the College of Law, Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources and Athletics.



CONSOL Energy is committed to being a responsible corporate citizen and a good neighbor. The company empowers the communities in which it operates by investing in local organizations, providing educational opportunities, developing partnerships and mobilizing resources to connect people and inspire positive, substantive change. Its corporate giving spans a variety of important causes, including education, public safety, youth organizations, community organizations and arts and culture.




Honor Roll of Donors

We would like to thank our benefactors who have generously contributed to the College. We are grateful for your support; we could not accomplish what we do without your help. Listed below are individuals and organizations who contributed to a program or department in our College from July 1, 2014, through June 30, 2015.


FALL 2015

$100,000 & up Mr. & Mrs. William M. Flanery Mr. Mark V. Leidecker Drs. Syd S. & Felicia F. Peng Mr. & Mrs. J. Wayne Richards Mrs. Lora V. Richards Mr. & Mrs. Benjamin M. Statler Mr. & Mrs. Maurice A. Wadsworth

$1,000 to $4,999 Dr. & Mrs. M. Dayne Aldridge Mr. & Mrs. Larry J. Argiro, Sr. Mr. & Mrs. C. Ben Arney Dr. Steven R. Auvil & Mrs. Jane Auvil Mr. & Mrs. Raymond A. Bradbury Mr. & Mrs. Francis S. Brezny Mr. & Mrs. William S. Britt Mr. Paul D. Browning $25,000 to $99,999 Dr. & Mrs. Robert C. Burchett Mr. & Mrs. Bart A. Aitken Mr. & Mrs. Thomas C. Burlas Dianne and James Anderson Mr. John W. Campbell Mr. Gary Christopher Dr. & Mrs. Raymond W. Chafin II Mr. Joseph C. Dorton & Ms. Anesa T. Chaibi Dr. Karen V. Harper-Dorton Lenore McComas Coberly Mr. & Mrs. Michael E. Ellis Dr. Wils L. & Jane Yohe Cooley Mr. & Mrs. James G. Faller Mrs. Sara B. Correll Mr. & Mrs. Earl W. Kennedy Mr. & Mrs. Robert E. Corsi, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. William H. McCartney, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Westley D. Cox Mr. & Mrs. Royce J. Watts Mr. & Mrs. Ralph Dado Dr. & Mrs. J. Reginald Dietz Mr. & Mrs. Robert C. Doeffinger, $10,000 to $24,999 Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Chester L. Allen Mr. & Mrs. Joseph F. Dunn Dr. David W. Baker Dr. & Mrs. W. Samuel Easterling Dr. Eugene V. Cilento Mr. Barton R. Field Dr. & Mrs. William L. Fourney Mr. Walter J. Fitzgerald Paul & Lucy Hornor Mr. & Mrs. Michael D. Flowers Mr. Mark A. Kovalan Mr. & Mrs. David J. Gingerich Dr. & Mrs. Ray E. Martin PhD Mr. & Mrs. Stuart N. Goodman William & Debra McMann Mr. & Mrs. James Griffin Mr. & Mrs. J. Richard Haden, Jr. $5,000 to $9,999 Mr. & Mrs. James B. Haines Mr. & Mrs. Robert J. Alvarez Mr. & Mrs. Benjamin A. Hardesty Mr. Jacob S. Freshwater Daniel L. & Diane Harman Ms. Devon L. Gosnell Dr. William M. Hart Donal S. & Amy J. Hall Mr. & Mrs. James W. Harvey Mr. & Mrs. George T. Harrick Mr. & Mrs. Dean W. Harvey Mr. & Mrs. Elmo J. Hurst Mr. & Mrs. Richard D. Haynes Dr. & Mrs. Samuel J. Kasley Mr. & Mrs. Charles I. Homan Drs. Powsiri & Penprapa S. Mr. Paul J. Jameson & Klinkhachorn Mrs. Janet T. Jameson Mr. & Mrs. James H. Laughlin, Jr. Dr. & Mrs. Edwin C. Jones, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Floyd E. Leaseburg II Mr. Richard J. Kacik Mr. Karl G. Morey Bob & Joyce Keith Mr. & Mrs. Robert O. Orders, Jr. Mr. Joseph Kent Mr. & Mrs. William R. Powell Mr. & Mrs. Junior H. Landes II Mr. John P. Smith Mr. & Mrs. Kristopher C. Lilly Mr. Tommy L. Stuchell Mr. & Mrs. Porter A. Lyon Mr. & Mrs. George B. Taylor Lucas & Karen Martin Mrs. Hilda R. Warner Mr. Edgar R. McHenry Mr. & Mrs. Thomas E. Messmore Ms. Betty L. Miller


Mr. & Mrs. Robert D. Miller Mr. & Mrs. Charles B. Palmer Mr. & Mrs. Marion Parsons, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Raman L. Patel Dr. & Mrs. Michael E. Prudich PhD Ms. Rhonda L. Radcliff & Mr. Robert Mullenger Mr. Richard C. Rockenstein Dr. & Mrs. Ziad A. Sabra Mr. Pinaki Santra Mr. Stephen P. Satterfield Mr. R. Patrick Simms Mr. & Mrs. Richard N. Smith Mr. Peter L. Spence Mr. & Mrs. Douglas P. Terry Mr. & Mrs. David Thompson Capt. Charles H. Tilton USNR (Ret.) Mr. & Mrs. Steven E. Trail Mr. William C. Turley, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Fred Van Kirk Mr. & Mrs. Robert W. Walter Dr. Richard E. Walters PhD Mr. & Mrs. Richard M. Whiting Mr. & Mrs. Jeffrey A. Wilson Prof. & Mrs. Brian D. Woerner Mr. Suyoun Won Dr. Wei-Pin Wu

$500 to $999 Mr. & Mrs. Mark K. Angelelli PE Capt. & Mrs. Douglas E. Arnold USA (Ret.) Dr. Larry Banta Mrs. Belle G. Barrett Mr. James L. Bero Mr. & Mrs. Dennis E. Bibbee Mr. James W. Boyd Mr. Joseph A. Bush, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. James R. Clark Mr. & Mrs. John P. Creamer III Mr. Steven Davis Andrew & Nikasha Decker Mr. & Mrs. Patrick D. Deem Esq. Ms. Kathryn H. deGraaf Dr. & Mrs. John P. Dever Ms. Mary C. Dillon Mr. & Mrs. Dale W. Dodrill Mr. Patrick A. Jackson & Mrs. Dayna L. Doricich Mr. Derek R. Fairman & Mrs. Lindsay V. Fairman Mr. & Mrs. John R. Farina Mr. Harold G. Fisher

Mr. Richard E. Fletcher Rev. James E. Galford & Mrs. Sheila L. Galford Mr. Kent Garvin & Mrs. Rebecca A. Garvin Mr. David R. Glass Mr. & Mrs. Mark W. Gordon Mrs. Emer O. Gunter Mr. & Mrs. John S. Hill Mr. & Mrs. David A. Horvath Mr. Ryan S. Hunter Dr. & Mr. Majid Jaridi Mr. & Mrs. Jimmie L. Justice Ms. Carol J. Kapnicky Mr. Calvin Kidd Mr. & Mrs. Gregory A. Kozera Ms. Kathryn Kukla Ms. Deborah L. Miller Dr. & Mrs. James E. Mitchell Mr. Thomas L. Moore II Mack Timothy Moore Mr. Kenneth C. Mundell Mr. & Mrs. Gary A. Murdock Mr. John E. Olashuk Mr. William R. Parr Mr. & Mrs. Edward L. Perry Mr. John Persun, Jr. Paul & Kathy Phillips Mr. & Mrs. Michael D. Poling PE Dr. Jacky C. Prucz Mr. James B. Reese Mr. & Mrs. Joseph S. Robertson Mr. & Mrs. Roy H. Rogerson Col. & Mrs. R. Michael Ruppert Mr. Raman Santra Ms. Christine Savage Mr. & Mrs. Frank W. Schneider Mr. & Mrs. Barrett L. Shrout Mr. & Mrs. Thomas W. Sirk, Jr. Mr. Paul J. Smith & Ms. Alexia Kniska Ms. Jennifer L. Smith Dr. James B. Stenger Mr. & Mrs. Vincent J. Stricker Mr. & Mrs. John A. Strohmeyer Mayor & Mrs. James H. Suttle Dr. & Mrs. Curtis J. Tompkins Mr. & Mrs. Ken P. Vitaya-Udom Mr. & Mrs. William D. Walko Mr. & Mrs. Edward A. Ward Dr. Karen E. Warden Mr. George A. Waters Mr. Chester L. Whitehair Dr. Ann S. Zirkle

Dr. John W. Zondlo Mr. & Mrs. Eugene M. Zvolensky, Sr.

$250 to $499 Mr. George C. Alex Mr. James V. Alford II Mr. & Mrs. Tony A. Angelelli Mr. & Mrs. C. Edward Ashby, Jr. Dr. & Mrs. Jimmy P. Balsara PhD Mr. & Mrs. W. Marston Becker Mr. & Mrs. Jeffrey W. Bell Dr. & Mrs. Navinchandra B. Bhatt Mr. Jeffrey K. Bowser & Dr. Georgiana Miksis Mr. Wallace M. Cackowski Mr. & Mrs. William M. Cavage Mr. & Mrs. Dennis C. Chambers Mr. Clyde E. Christy & Dr. Laura S. Christy Mr. Charlie L. Cornett Mr. Ted B. Cranmer Christine & Aaron Cropp Dr. & Mrs. Kenneth W. Cutright Mr. Aaron Davis Mr. & Mrs. John C. Day Mr. & Mrs. Michael L. Dever Mr. Gilbert W. DeVine Mrs. Catharine E. Everitt Mr. Richard L. Falkenstein Dr. Karen M. Fanucci Mr. George B. Flegal, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Charles J. Fleischer Mr. & Mrs. Douglas W. Frost Dr. & Mrs. Jeffrey G. Gray Mr. & Mrs. Thomas A. Gribschaw Mrs. Deborah A. Hair Mr. William F. Haley Mr. & Mrs. James L. Hall Dr. Garry C. Hess Mr. & Mrs. Thomas A. Hill Mr. & Mrs. Charles G. Howard Mr. & Mrs. Brian D. Inman Mr. & Mrs. Munther T. Jabbur Mr. Pravin M. Khandare Mr. & Mrs. Oren E. Kitts Mr. & Mrs. James A. Kutsch, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Alan M. Lee Mr. Edward G. Lewis Mr. & Mrs. Bryce L. Maddox Mr. & Mrs. Arthur M. McClain Prof. & Mrs. John E. McCray, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. William S. Mease Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Mitchell

Mr. Stephen R. Montagna Dr. & Mrs. Ian R. Moore Mr. Richard L. Mowrey Dr. Harapanhalli S. Muralidhara & Dr. Ponnamma K. Kurian Mr. Narain R. Muthuraj Dr. & Mrs. Warren R. Myers Mr. & Mrs. Terrence L. Parsons Mr. David A. Price Mr. Bradley R. Reed Dr. & Mrs. Leroy C. Reid, Jr. Ms. Melisa L. Ridenour Mrs. Alka J. Rinkus Mr. David J. Ritz Mr. & Mrs. Brad J. Roberts Mr. & Mrs. James J. Rusenko Mr. Phillip M. Sabree Dr. Simsek Sarikelle Mr. Bryan N. Schwalm & Mrs. Megan Schwalm R. Lennie & Diana Scott Mr. W. David Shinn Mr. James L. Spano Dr. & Mrs. James E. Spearman Dr. Richard J. Stock Mr. & Mrs. William H. Stroup Mr. & Mrs. Thomas E. Tallman PE Mr. Robert O. Thoman Mr. & Mrs. Robert K. Tinney Mr. & Mrs. Charles E. Tupes Mr. Jay J. Turner PE Mr. James R. Turner, Jr. Mr. Kelles L. Veneri Dr. Yajie Wang Mr. Daniel A. Weber Mrs. Deborah A. & Mr. Kevin West Mr. Duane E. Westfall Mr. & Mrs. Robert C. Whiteman Mr. & Mrs. James D. Wilson Dr. Chaojin Xu Mr. & Mrs. David A. Young, Jr. Mr. Richard Yungwirth Mr. & Mrs. Kurt Zachar

Ms. Michele Messenger CDR J. Larry Miles, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Carl W. Miller II Mr. Jonathan L. Miller Mr. Eric S. Miller Mr. & Mrs. David P. Miller Mr. & Mrs. Robert D. Mills Paul & Jacqueline Mills Mr. Taizoon Miyajiwala Dr. Chinnarao Mokkapati Mr. William D. Monaghan Mr. & Mrs. Guy E. Mongold, Jr. Mrs. Kim M. Morgan Mr. & Mrs. Richard A. Morris Mrs. Sara L. Morris Mr. Cleveland G. Mosby, Jr. Mr. Joseph Moulden Mr. Jeffery K. Mullett Mr. & Mrs. David E. Mullett Dr. Richard P. Mullin Mr. Andrew J. Murray II Mr. Clyde B. Musick Mrs. Patricia A. Napier Morrison Mr. & Mrs. Randy A. Nicholson Mr. Paul F. Nocida Mr. Terence J. Nypaver Mr. & Mrs. George J. Oberlick Mr. Jonathan O’Dell Dr. & Mrs. James B. Ogundele Mr. Larry E. Oliver Mr. & Mrs. Arthur G. Oliver, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Joseph F. Oliveto Mr. & Mrs. Richard A. Ott Mr. Kevin F. Owsiany Mr. Thomas H. Parsons Mr. & Mrs. Vijendrakumar C. Patel Mr. Thomas Patton Mr. Lee T. Paules Mr. & Mrs. Harold R. Payne Mr. John D. Pellegrin Mr. & Mrs. Robert L. Pence Mr. Sandy K. Pennington Mr. Richard J. Perin Mr. Charles H. Perry, Jr. Dr. Kerri B. Phillips Mr. & Mrs. Andrew D. Pickens, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Timothy J. Pizatella Mr. Ronnie Poff Mr. Martin Potts Mr. Timothy J. Poulin Mr. Herbert S. Rawlings Mr. Michael W. Redifer Mrs. Rebecca M. Reeder Mr. & Mrs. Mark F. Reeder Mr. & Mrs. Joseph E. Reger Mr. & Mrs. John F. Rentschler, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. John A. Reynolds Mr. Boyd W. Rhodes Mr. & Mrs. William S. Rice Mrs. Nancy S. Ridgeway Mrs. Norma Ridgway Mr. & Mrs. Thomas E. Riekel Mr. Terry D. Rings & Dr. Patricia M. Rings Mr. & Mrs. Carl T. Ripberger III Mr. & Mrs. Ralph D. Rippey



Mr. Wayne M. Henshaw & Ms. Deborah S. Joyce Mr. & Mrs. Earl K. Hess, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. John E. Higginbotham, Jr. Mr. Luke J. Holbert Mr. & Mrs. David K. Hollen Mr. & Mrs. John A. Holmes Dr. Gusheng Hu Mr. Mark A. Huebner PE Mr. Hugh B. Humbert, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Ervin J. Hunter Mr. Kiran K. Jain MBA Mr. John B. James Mr. & Mrs. C. Duane Jamison Dr. & Mrs. Donald W. Jarrell Mr. Jason A. Jarrell Mr. & Mrs. Donald G. Jones Mr. & Mrs. Denver A. Jordan Mr. Charles R. Judy Dr. & Mrs. Gary Keefer Ms. Alice L. Kerns Mr. & Mrs. Mark D. Kessinger Mr. Garry R. Kilmer Ms. Staci R. King Mr. John J. Klim III Drs. Lesley Ann & Michael J. Klishis Mr. Andrew R. Knapp Dr. Don L. Koubek Mr. Christopher Krall Dr. & Mrs. John M. Kuhlman Mr. John A. Kulmoski, Jr. Mrs. Vicki R. Kurrle Mr. & Mrs. John C. LaPorta Mr. & Mrs. Thomas L. Lapp Dr. Barbara T. Leonard Dr. & Mrs. William S. Lewellen Mr. & Mrs. Stephen C. Lewis Mr. Richard L. Lewis II Mr. James E. Leyh Mr. & Mrs. David R. Linger Mr. Michael S. Linger Ms. Sara S. Mahood Mr. & Mrs. Joseph A. Marcinek, Jr. Ms. Nancy H. Marsh Mr. & Mrs. Peter M. Martin Dr. David R. Martinelli Mr. Domingo A. Mata Madrid Mr. & Mrs. G. Stuart Matthis II Dr. Steven R. Matulis & Dr. Wannetta S. Matulis Mrs. Christine S. Mayernik Mr. Richard E. McAllister Dr. Kevyn C. McBride Mrs. Margaret McCartney Mr. Jacob D. McCarty Mr. Glenn D. McCreedy Mr. George T. McCulley, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. S. Fenton McDonald Mr. Joseph K. McFadden Ms. Mary E. McGivern & Mr. Bill Jones Mr. & Mrs. David L. McQuaid Mr. Ryan Merriam Mr. Reginald A. Messenger


Mr. & Mrs. William Crise Mr. Gaylord Cumberledge Mr. Alva R. Cummings Mr. Joshuah W. Dalton Dr. & Mrs. Earl Z. Damewood Mr. & Mrs. Steven K. Darnell Dr. & Mrs. Paul C. Davis Mr. Kellen A. Davis Mr. & Ms. Peter C. de Jong Mr. & Mrs. Dale T. Deem Mr. Tyler S. Deller Mr. & Mrs. Joseph T. Deneault Mr. George Desko Mrs. Kathleen M. Devlin Mr. John S. Doyle, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Randall K. Drazba Mr. & Mrs. David G. Drewry, Jr. Dr. & Mrs. Darryl L. Duncan Mr. Jared Dunlap Mr. Samuel T. Dusi Mr. Steven E. Easley Mrs. Mildred M. Edwards Mrs. Susan K. English Dr. John R. Etherton Mr. & Mrs. John P. Figurski Dr. Gerald L. Finfinger Mr. & Mrs. Earl M. Fisher Mr. & Mrs. John A. Fleek Mr. Timothy K. Fleming Judge & Mrs. Edwin F. Flowers Mrs. Amy E. Floyd Mr. & Mrs. B. Kenneth Fouts Mr. Jingang Fu Mr. Larry D. Garner Mr. William K. Garrett Mr. Michael J. Garska Mr. & Mrs. John P. Gay Mr. Donald J. Gay Mrs. Laura E. Gergen Ashley & Timothy Gerken Mr. & Mrs. John J. Ghaznavi Mr. & Mrs. Alexander H. Ghiz, Jr. Ms. Sheree L. Gibson Ms. Carrie E. Goddard Mrs. Kathleen Goddard Mr. & Mrs. Dennis L. Goins Mr. & Mrs. Barry A. Goodwin Mr. & Mrs. William R. Gray, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. John H. Graybill Mr. & Mrs. Garret W. Green Mr. & Mrs. Lewis G. Grimm PE Mr. Christopher S. Guinn Dr. & Mrs. George A. Hall Mr. Robert L. Halstead Mr. James E. Hardy & Mrs. Mary A. Hardy Mr. & Mrs. Samuel R. Harman Mr. & Mrs. James E. Harris Maj. Gerhard B. Hartig Mrs. Leslie N. Hartz Mr. & Mrs. James W. Harvey Prof. Nastaran Hashemi Mr. Richard F. Hashinger Mr. & Mrs. William R. Heathcote Mr. William D. Hegener


$100 to $249 Dr. Anna M. Allen Mr. Randy L. Allison Mr. & Mrs. Richard G. Almes Mr. & Mrs. Andrew M. Altman LTC Olga M. Anderson Mr. Jeffrey L. Andrews Mr. & Mrs. Larry J. Andrews Mr. Ajith Antony Mr. Ramanna P. Avancha Mr. Edward J. Bailey Mrs. Rita A. Bajura Mr. Narayan Balachandran Mr. & Mrs. Steven C. Ball Mr. Michael E. Bane Mr. Theodore C. Barker Mr. Terry J. Barone Mr. Brett S. Barthelmess & Mrs. Angela L. Barthelmess Mr. Charles R. Bartlett Capt. James V. Bartlett & Dr. Olivia T. Bartlett

Mr. Scott A. Bartlett Lt. Col. (Ret.) & Mrs. Paul G. Bellia Mr. & Mrs. John C. Benner Mr. & Mrs. Stephen M. Billcheck, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. David P. Billings Dr. & Mrs. G. Lansing Blackshaw Mr. & Mrs. John L. Blair, Jr. Mr. Francis M. Blake Mr. Jerry D. Blue Mr. & Mrs. Mark S. Boggs Mrs. Irene F. Bohuslavsky Mr. & Mrs. Samuel G. Bonasso Mr. & Mrs. Kevin J. Booe Mr. Bruce A. Boomer Mr. & Mrs. Norman J. Bosetti Mr. & Mrs. John W. Botts Mr. William E. Bowling Mr. John W. Boyle Mr. & Mrs. Robert S. Bragg Mr. Arthur M. Bree Mr. Michael E. Brennan Mr. Kurt A. Brungard PE Mr. David R. Bungard Mr. Donald Burch & Mrs. Kendra L. Burch Ms. Jean M. Butcher Mr. John W. Byrd Ms. & Mr. Wendy A. Cain PE Maj. & Mrs. Jason A. Camilletti Mr. Gregory T. Cammerata Dr. & Mrs. John A. Campbell Mr. & Mrs. Donald F. Campbell Mr. & Mrs. Overton H. Caperton Mr. Jacob A. Caplan Mr. Keith A. Castilow Mr. Anthony J. Castronovo Mrs. Ann G. Cavage Mr. & Mrs. Ryan D. Cavallo Dr. & Mrs. William R. Cawthorne Mr. Burdell D. Chapman III Mr. & Mrs. Christopher J. Chehovin Mr. Edward J. Chehovin Dr. David A. Cicci Mr. & Mrs. Henry E. Cicci Mr. Sam J. Cilento Mr. Steven B. Clagett James M. Clark Mr. & Mrs. Richard A. Clay Mr. & Mrs. Richard E. Cline Mr. Robert A. Clise Mr. August D. Coby Mr. & Mrs. Robert J. Cochenour Mr. Kenneth F. Codeluppi Mr. & Mrs. Jeffrey S. Coe Mr. & Mrs. Charles W. Collins Mr. Mike G. Collins Mr. Thomas L. Collinvitti Mr. James E. Connell Mr. & Mrs. Roger B. Corder CPA Mr. & Mrs. Bernard C. Corker Mrs. Susan M. Cortes Mr. & Mrs. Russell V. Costanza Mr. Brian E. Cottrill Mr. & Mrs. Timothy N. Cox


SUPPORT Mrs. Margaret A. Roberts Mr. Michael Roberts & Mrs. Margaret A. Roberts Mr. & Mrs. Reed D. Robinson Mr. & Mrs. James P. Robison Ms. Besse Rose Mr. Blaine B. Royce, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Michael A. Rupar Mr. & Mrs. John W. Rustenburg Dr. & Mrs. Byron E. Ruth Ms. Ruth A. Sands Mr. Mandar M. Sarangdhar Mrs. Piper S. Sarver Mr. & Mrs. William A. Savage Mr. & Mrs. C. Jack Savage Mr. Steven R. Sawyer Mr. Louis M. Schlesinger Mr. Arthur K. Schuler Mr. & Mrs. James W. Schumacher Mr. & Mrs. Gary J. Schweitzer Mr. & Mrs. Timothy B. Schwinabart Mr. Jeffery M. See Mr. & Mrs. Gilbert T. Seese PE Mrs. Tracie L. Seivertson Mr. & Mrs. John E. Seknicka

Mr. Christian E. Shaffer Mr. David W. Shaffer Mr. Israr P. Shaik Mr. Charles A. Shaver Mr. & Mrs. Steven P. Shaver Mr. David E. Sheets Mr. & Mrs. Jeffrey D. Shields Mr. & Mrs. Michael T. Shook Mr. & Mrs. Morris M. Shor Mr. Frank J. Shuler Mr. Martin D. Siebken & Mrs. Susan K. Siebken Mrs. Dorothy W. Simon Mr. Carl V. Simon Mr. & Mrs. Dwain M. Sims Mr. Mark F. Sindelar Mr. Robert D. Skelton Dr. & Mrs. Ojars Skujins Mrs. Sheryl D. Smith PE Mr. & Mrs. Brett W. Smith Mr. & Mrs. Charles R. Steele Mr. & Mrs. Richard H. Stelle Mr. John M. Stickler Mr. Daniel L. Stickler Mr. & Mrs. Lester W. Stone

Dr. Terrence R. Stuart Mrs. Loretta D. Suitlas Mr. John M. Svedman Mrs. June D. Swartwout Mr. & Mrs. David L. Swearingen LTC Kevin D. Swisher & Dr. Anne K. Swisher Mr. Nathan G. Sypolt & Ms. Megan Shoemaker Mr. L. G. Tackett Mr. & Mrs. Caleb A. Tarleton Mr. Adam M. Tarovisky Mr. George M. Tataseo Mr. & Mrs. Robert E. Taylor Mr. Paul F. Terry Mr. Samson Tesfaselassie
 Mr. John A. Thomas, Jr. Dr. Douglas L. Timmons Mr. & Mrs. Leonard J. Timms, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Kristopher K. Tingler Mr. & Mrs. Stephen W. Tippett Mr. & Mrs. Daniel J. Tomley Dr. Ting-Man Tong Mr. Dennis P. Townsend Mr. & Mrs. Todd V. Townsend Dr. Terri L. Tramel

Irvin Stewart Society: Making a Difference for Years to Come Below, you will find a list of the newest members to join the Irvin Stewart Society. These generous alumni and friends have included the Statler College in their estate plans. They are helping students of the future through gift provisions in their wills, life insurance or gifts of real estate with a retained life state. We are forever grateful to them. Please consider joining the Irvin Stewart Society by including our College in your estate plans. For more information please contact Heather Cross at 304.293.4156 or

Dr. Wils L. Cooley FALL 2015

Ms. Jane Yohe Cooley


Mr. John R. Hardesty Mrs. Mary Anne Hardesty

Mr. & Mrs. William D. Trimbath Mr. & Mrs. Brian A. Truman Mr. & Mrs. Roy M. Turner Mr. & Mrs. Harold Turner Mr. & Mrs. Todd J. Urness Mr. Thomas E. Urquhart Mrs. Patricia W. Vetter Mr. Les A. Viegas Ms. Christine M. Visnic Mr. & Mrs. Robert L. Wallace II Mr. Leason W. Walters Mr. & Mrs. Karl E. Waltzer Mr. & Mrs. Gary W. Wamsley Mr. Thomas E. Watson & Mrs. Audrey A. Watson Mr. James M. Weaver Mr. & Mrs. Thomas M. Weber Mrs. Amy H. Wen Mr. & Mrs. William H. West Mr. & Mrs. George T. Westbrook, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Paul R. Westfall PE Mr. & Mrs. Robert W. Wheeler Mrs. Beverly K. Whipp Mr. Robert W. Whipp & Mrs. Beverly K. Whipp

Mr. & Mrs. Glenn L. White Mr. Norman W. L. White Mr. & Mrs. Thomas H. White Dr. & Mrs. F. David Wilkin Mrs. Erna F. Wilkin Mr. & Mrs. Cyril H. Williams, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Christopher J. Williamson Mr. & Mrs. Richard H. Wilson Mr. & Mrs. George N. Wilson Mr. & Mrs. Steven F. Wilson Mr. & Mrs. Marvin C. Woodie, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Jeffrey T. Woods Mr. & Mrs. William H. Wray, Jr. Dr. Herng-Tay Wu Dr. Siamak Yassini Mr. & Mrs. Otis R. Yeater Ms. Shangcong Zeng Mr. & Mrs. Zhong Zhang Mr. Hao Zhang Mr. Linzhong Zhuo Mr. & Mrs. George T. Zimmerman PE Mr. & Mrs. Robert E. Zutaut, Jr.

Alumni: GET INVOLVED! CONNECT • MEMBERSHIP • CAREERS • COMMUNITY Congratulations and welcome to your alumni family. The WVU Alumni Association is here to help strengthen your networks, enhance your experiences and allow you to stay connected and engaged in the life of your alma mater. If you are interested in joining our network, visit



IN MEMORIAM John (Jack) Caffrey, BS MinE ’50, passed away on April 14. Caffrey served as chief engineer for U.S. Steel Mining’s Gary operations and was instrumental in the Indian Ridge Industrial Park in Welch, where Federal Correctional Institution McDowell is located. He also worked to develop U.S. Steel’s No. 50 Mine, commonly known as the Pinnacle Mine, which is owned by Cliffs Natural Resources. Caffrey was appointed to serve as commissioner of the Division of Environmental Protection by former Gov. Cecil Underwood. He is survived by his wife, Patricia; his son, Kevin; and four sisters. Wahab Khair, professor emeritus of mining engineering, passed away on June 16, in Alexandria, Virginia. He is survived by his wife, Judy. William Poundstone, BS MinE ’49, passed away on July 3. Poundstone spent more than 30 years with CONSOL, starting as a timberman and rising to executive vice president. He is the holder of 34 U.S. patents and has authored numerous technical publications. Poundstone received numerous awards and honors throughout his career, including induction into the West Virginia Coal Hall of Fame, membership in the National Academy of Engineering and 1991 College of Mineral and Energy Resources Outstanding Alumnus of the Year. He received an honorary degree from WVU in 1981. In 2000 through a charitable gift, the retired CONSOL executive established the Poundstone Lecture Series and Distinguished Engineer of Mines Award, which brings individuals who had an exceptional career in mining and related industries to campus each fall to share their experiences with students and faculty. He is survived by his wife, Martha; his two sons; a stepdaughter; and several grandchildren. Fred Toothman, BS MinE ’41, MS MinE ’46, passed away on April 26, 2014, in Titusville, Florida. A native of Hepzibah, Toothman retired from CSX Transportation. He is survived by his wife, Velma.



Eaton Corporation Eaton Corporation Matching Gift Program Eli Lilly & Company Foundation EQT Corporation - Matching Gifts Program FirstEnergy FirstEnergy Foundation Frank T. & Mary P. Baker Fund Gannon International Grace Foundation, Inc. Harris Foundation HDR, Inc. Herbert L. Ridder Revocable Trust Huntington Ingalls Industries, Inc. IBM Corporation IBM International Foundation Matching Gift Program Inniskill Associates J. M. Huber Corporation Johnson Controls Foundation Kinder Morgan, Inc. Larry E. Stewart Trust Local Union 14614 Lockheed Martin Corporation Foundation McClinton Chevrolet Company Northrop Grumman Corporation Norwest Corporation Occidental Petroleum Corporation Olashuk Environmental, Inc. Prudential Foundation Raytheon Raytheon Company Santino T. Serpento Revocable Trust Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories, Inc. Shawn & Jaqueline O’Farrell Charitable Fund Southern Company Services Swagelok TE Connectivity, Inc. Texas Instruments Foundation Textron, Inc. The Carden Company The Glenmede Trust Company The Lengyel Family Trust The Millicent N. Mason Rev. Trust Thomas W. Howard, Inc. Union Pacific Corporation Verizon Foundation Wells Fargo Community Support Campaign Wells Fargo Educational Matching Gift Program


$1,000 to $4,999 Alliance Coal, LLC Alpha Natural Resources, Inc. American Association of Drilling Engineers Babcock & Wilcox Baughan Group CAS Structural Engineering, Inc. Chevron CONSOL Energy, Inc. CSE Corporation E. I. DuPont De Memours & Company Exa Tech Solutions, Inc. FirstEnergy Corporation Gimme Foundation Inc. Grover H. Bays Estate Institute of Industrial Engineers Jay & Linda Snider Family Charitable Gift Fund Laurita Energy, LLC Leo & Marjorie Mehl Trust Mar-Bal, Inc. McKinley & Associates, Inc. Miller Engineering, Inc. National Coal Transportation Association, Inc. Oracle Political Action Committee Pfizer Foundation Matching Gifts Program Pratt & Whitney Canada, Inc. Procter & Gamble Company R.J. & Maureen W. Watts Charitable Fund Siemens US - Matching Contributions Program for Employees Southern Coals Conference SWIFT The Dow Chemical Company The Thrasher Group WV Coal Association, Inc. YAS Foundation $100 to $999 AeroJet Amgen Foundation Bechtel Matching Gift Program Boeing Company Matching Gift Program Braskem Bridgestone Americas Trust Fund Brown Development Co. Caterpillar Foundation Matching Gift Program Chevron Humankind Employee Funds Clark Construction Group LLC Cummins, Inc. Dominion Foundation-Matching Gifts Program


$100,000 & up Alpha Foundation Arch Coal, Inc. Dominion Foundation McKamish, Inc. W. David Teter Irrevocable Trust $25,000 to $99,999 Chesapeake Energy Corporation ETAS, Inc. ExxonMobil Foundation Matching Gift Program General Electric Company Halliburton Foundation, Inc. Hiner Family Fund John L. Kirkland Trust Julian H. Phillips Estate Massey Foundation Nason P. Pritchard Trust Toyota InfoTechnology Center, USA United States Steel Corporation $10,000 to $24,999 Alpha Natural Resources Services, LLC Cellular Tracking Technologies Chevron Products Company DiPaolo Family Charitable Fund DirecTV Dow Chemical Company Foundation Dräeger Medical Inc. Eagle Research Corporation Formica Family Charitable Fund Lockheed Martin National Space Grant Foundation Pearson Education PPG Industries The Williams Companies, Inc. The Williams Foundation $5,000 to $9,999 AIST Foundation George & Janette Taylor Charitable Trust Joy Global Surface Mining Inc. Joy M. Teske Revocable Trust Martin Marietta Materials, Inc. NC3, LLC North Carolina Coal Institute, Inc. Parkersburg Area Community Foundation Penn Virginia Operating Co. LLC Peter’s Creek Coal Association Shell Oil Company Foundation The Boeing Company Payment Services Vaughn Family Charitable Fund


Non-Profit Organization US Postage PAID Morgantown, WV Permit No. 34

West Virginia University Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources PO Box 6070, Morgantown, WV 26506-6070 Address correction requested

Save the Dates Football Tent WVU vs. Texas Tech November 7, 2015

Chesapeake Energy Capitol Classic, Charleston Civic Center December 17, 2015

Hiner Lecture featuring Carol Battershell, United States Department of Energy November 12, 2015

December Commencement December 18, 2015

Statler College Visiting Committee November 12-13, 2015 Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering Advisory Committee November 13, 2015

Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Academy April 8, 2016

Chemical Engineering Academy April 28-29, 2016 Civil and Environmental Engineering Academy April 28-29, 2016 Commencement May 14, 2016

Lane Department Academy April 22-23, 2016

Faculty Hiring 2015–2016

The Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources is recruiting for open faculty positions in the 2015-2016 academic year. For more information visit:

EngineeringWV Fall 2015  

West Virginia University's Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources fall magazine and annual report featuring underg...

EngineeringWV Fall 2015  

West Virginia University's Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources fall magazine and annual report featuring underg...

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