The ISE News are listed in reverse chronological order.

ISE Alumnus Dr. Joe Meredith Received Virginia TradePort Innovator of the Year Award

Dr. Joseph W. Meredith, Jr.
Dr. Joe Meredith

(November 30, 2015)  Dr. Joe Meredith, adjunct faculty in the ISE Department and President of the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, received the Virginia TradePort Innovator of the Year Award at the 67th Virginia Conference on World Trade in early November. The award is given to a company or individual that has made a significant impact on international trade and business development in and around the Virginia TradePort. Dr. Meredith is a Class of 1997 alumnus and a member of the Academy of Distinguished Alumni in the ISE Department.

For more information, please go to the full story, “Joe Meredith receives Virginia TradePort Innovator of the Year Award” on the Virginia Tech News.

Dr. Joe Gabbard Won Microsoft HoloLens Academic Research Grant

Dr. Joseph L. Gabbard Jr.
Dr. Joe Gabbard

(November 17, 2015)  Virginia Tech was one of five institutions nationwide to receive the Microsoft HoloLens Academic Research Grant Award, including $100,000 and two Hololens Development Edition devices. The winning submission, titled "Collaborative Analysis of Large-scale Mixed Reality Data" was awarded to PI Joseph Gabbard (an Associate Professor of Human Factors, ISE) and Co-PI Doug Bowman (Professor of Computer Science), with support from several faculty in the Center for Human-Computer Interaction’s 3DExperiences group.

Housed within the Institute for Creativity, Arts and Technology, the Center for HCI's 3DExperiences Group is one of the largest interdisciplinary AR/VR groups in the world, consisting of faculty from computer science, human factors, psychology, visual arts, communications, geography, engineering and education.

The funded research will investigate multi-user visualization of, and interaction with, big datasets in collaborative mixed reality environments. The research is inspired by large physical spaces (e.g., museums) that allow users to stand around large objects in expansive spaces, each with individual points of view, but with common ground and the ability to understand what others are looking at and talking about. Using the ICAT Cube, the researchers will develop tools allowing users wearing HoloLens devices to explore and analyze large-scale meteorological datasets, representative of big data, to examine core user interaction issues in multi-user collaborative settings.

Check out the official announcement from Microsoft here.

In response to the news, PI Gabbard noted that, "We are honored to have received this award and level of recognition. Indeed, given the highly competitive field, this award suggests to me that Microsoft acknowledges Virginia Tech's world-class faculty, research and facilities in the areas of Augmented and Mixed Reality. We've worked hard to establish ourselves in this area, and are excited to partner with Microsoft to further our collective knowledge.”

Hololens in VT ICAT Cube
Dr. Joe Gabbard's work will examine multi-user mixed reality interaction using the Hololens in the Virginia Tech ICAT Cube

Holly Vasquez received Eisenhower Fellowship Award

Holly Vasquez
Holly Vasquez

(November 10, 2015)  ISE graduate student Holly Vasquez won a scholarship from the Dwight David Eisenhower Transportation Research Fellowship program.  This is the second year in a row she received the Eisenhower fellowship.  Her research focuses on understanding the interaction between drivers and automated vehicle systems.

For more information, please go to the full story on the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute website.

Kaveh Bastani was Finalist for QSR Best Student Paper Award at INFORMS 2015

Kaveh Bastani
Kaveh Bastani

(November 9, 2015)  ISE PhD student Kaveh Bastani was selected as a finalist for the Quality Statistics Reliability (QSR) Best Student Paper Award at the 2015 INFOMRS conference in Philadelphia, PA. His paper was titled “An Online Sparse Estimation based Approach for Real-time Monitoring in Additive Manufacturing Processes using Heterogeneous Sensor Data”.

In this paper, Kaveh proposed a supervised classification approach based on the concept of sparse estimation for real-time monitoring applications of additive manufacturing processes. To accommodate real-time monitoring, a novel fast sparse estimation algorithm was further developed and incorporated into the proposed approach. Real data scenarios were utilized for validation of the proposed approach. This paper was joint work with his advisor Dr. Zhenyu (James) Kong.

Nasibeh Azadeh-Fard was Finalist for the IBM Best Student Paper Award at INFORMS 2015

Nasibeh Azadeh-Fard
Nasibeh Azadeh-Fard

(November 5, 2015)  ISE PhD student Nasibeh Azadeh-Fard was recognized as a finalist for the IBM Service Science Best Student Paper Award at the 2015 INFORMS conference in Philadelphia, PA. Her paper, "Can Objective Early Warning Scores and Subjective Risk Assessments Predict Patient’s Hospital Length of Stay and Mortality?" looks at risk management issues in hospital settings, and analyzes the predictive power of early warning scores in emergency departments.

Nasibeh took a multi-method approach; she first developed an agent-level simulation model of a hospital where agents were patients and physicians, and simulated patients’ health status from admission to a hospital until getting discharged (or death). Her model offered a theoretical framework to analyze the predictive power early warning scores. Then she empirically tested the model's predictions using a detailed dataset of over 1000 patients from a hospital in Virginia. Her research offered new insights into improving health service performance and risk assessment in healthcare systems.

Nasibeh's research has been co-advised by Dr. Jaime Camelio and Dr. Navid Ghaffarzadegan.

ISE Alumnus Dr. Richard Cassady Joins Advisory Board

Dr. C. Richard Cassady
Dr. C. Richard Cassady

(November 2, 2015)  Please welcome Dr. C. Richard Cassady to the ISE Advisory Board! Dr. Cassady is a Professor in the Department of Industrial Engineering and Director of the Freshman Engineering Program at the University of Arkansas. He is a three-time ISE alumnus: he holds a BS summa cum laude, an MS, and a PhD, all in Industrial and Systems Engineering from Virginia Tech. He is the 17th member of the current ISE Advisory Board, and will attend the next Board meeting in April 2016. 

Please go to his bio page for more information about Dr. Cassady.

Welcome [back] to VT ISE, Dr. Cassady!

In Memoriam: Manfred "Fred" Spengler, Associate Professor Emeritus

Associate Professor Emeritus Manfred "Fred" Spengler
Associate Professor Emeritus Manfred "Fred" Spengler

(October 20, 2015)  Dr. Manfred Ludwig (Fred) Spengler, Associate Professor Emeritus of the Grado Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering (ISE), passed away on October 12, 2015. He resided in Christiansburg, VA, was active in the St. Michael Lutheran Church in Blacksburg, VA, as well as the Blacksburg Lions Club. He retired after 22 years of service in the U.S. Air Force reserves at the rank of Major, and worked as an industrial engineer at Eastman Kodak, Stromberg-Carlson, and the Harris Corporation. 

Following his industrial employment, in 1975 Professor Spengler joined Virginia Tech, and served for many years as a Cooperative Extension faculty, assisting manufacturing entities with industrial engineering problems and teaching short courses in industry. In 1994, he transitioned into a full-time faculty teaching position with the ISE department, and applied his instructional skills to the undergraduate curriculum, where he revamped the fundamental Methods Engineering and Work Measurement course and advised numerous student teams in the Senior Design course until his retirement from the university in 2000. 

As a graduate of Rochester Institute of Technology with an MBA degree, in addition to his industrial engineering degree from Columbia School of Engineering, Professor Spengler was a strong proponent of value-based engineering, where he applied economics techniques to engineering analyses. He published papers in several industrial engineering journals, and was very active in the Institute of Industrial Engineers, from which he received several commendations for his development activities. 

In 2003, Professor Spengler endowed a $25,000 scholarship at Virginia Tech for undergraduate engineering students in memory of his late daughter, Laurie Anne Spengler. He also was a major supporter of the Young Life of Virginia program. Fred was proud of his two children and five grandchildren, and he will be greatly missed by his friends in academia and industry.

Professor Spengler's memorial was also published on the College of Engineering News.

Lening Wang presented to Virginia House Appropriations Committee

Lening Wang
Lening Wang

(October 15, 2015)  ISE Ph.D. student Lening Wang gave a presentation on Additive Manufacturing on September 21, 2015 to the members of the Virginia House Appropriations Committee at Commonwealth Center for Advanced Manufacturing. He is working with his Ph.D. advisor Dr. Ran Jin on in situ processing monitoring and quality control of additive manufacturing. He is also a member of Laboratory of Data Science and Visualization.

Lening Wang presenting to VA House Appropriations Committee
Ph.D. student Lening Wang (right) was giving a presentation on Additive Manufacturing to the members of the Virginia House Appropriations Committee.

Hadi El-Amine is the 2015 Bonder Scholar

Hadi El-Amine
Hadi El-Amine

(September 30, 2015)  ISE PhD student Hadi El-Amine has been selected for the prestigious 2015 Seth Bonder Scholarship for Applied Operations Research in Health Services based on his dissertation work on optimal post-donation blood screening strategies to improve blood transfusion safety. Hadi has been working on this research in collaboration with the American Red Cross (Dr. Stramer and Dr. Moritz), advised by Dr. Ebru Bish and Dr. Douglas Bish. Hadi has published several articles resulting from his work.

The purpose of this prestigious and competitive INFORMS award is to promote the development and application of process modeling and operations research analyses to health care design, delivery and operations. The scholarship is granted on the basis of excellence, innovation, preparation, and the probability of a candidate's success. Candidates are evaluated on the quality of their preparation to undertake a program of applied operations research in the field of health care. The proposed program of research is judged according to its potential for making a significant contribution to the field of applied OR in health care systems, as well as the likelihood of successful completion.

Please congratulate Hadi, and for those attending the annual INFORMS Conference this year, see his presentation at a special session dedicated to Bonder Scholars.

Dr. Blake Johnson’s 3-D Printed Tissue Scaffold Research Featured on VT News

Dr. Blake Johnson
Dr. Blake Johnson

(September 24, 2015)  Research by Dr. Blake Johnson, new Assistant Professor in the ISE department, was featured as the top story on the Virginia Tech News. He is one of the research team members from several universities and academic fields who successfully 3-D printed customized tissue scaffolds that may provide a means of regenerating complex peripheral nerve injuries in humans in the future.

For more information, please go to the full story, “3-D printing method can regenerate complex peripheral nerve injuries,” on the Virginia Tech News.

ISE Students' passion for Future Electric Transportation Systems and Experiences via IRES featured on COE News

Martha (Missie) Smith
Martha "Missie" Smith
Dr. Joseph L. Gabbard Jr.
Dr. Joe Gabbard

(September 17, 2015)  Ph.D. student Missie Smith and senior undergraduate students Nadia Doutcheva and Jill Steeter were featured on the recent College of Engineering (COE) News, along with their faculty advisor Dr. Joe Gabbard. The news describes the three students’ passion to design future electric transportation systems using augmented reality, as well as their research experiences at University of Nottingham, U.K. through COE’s International Research Experiences for Students (IRES) program.

For more information, please go to the full story, "England’s lure of Harry Potter and a passion for engineering," on the College of Engineering News.

Alpha Pi Mu received National Outstanding Chapter award

Dr. Don Taylor (left) and Megan Dierolf (right)
Dr. Don Taylor (left) and Megan Dierolf (right)
Dr. Kimberly Ellis
Dr. Kimberly Ellis

(September 9, 2015)  The Virginia Tech Chapter of Alpha Pi Mu was recognized as the Outstanding Chapter for 2014-2015 by the national office. Dr. Don Taylor, ISE Department Head, presented the award plaque to Megan Dierolf, who was the chapter president last year. Alpha Pi Mu is an active student organization in the ISE department, and Dr. Kimberly Ellis is the faculty advisor.

Drs. Subhash Sarin and Daniel Steeneck received Best Paper Award

Dr. Subhash Sarin
Dr. Subhash Sarin
Dr. Daniel Steeneck
Dr. Daniel Steeneck

(September 9, 2015)  Dr. Subhash Sarin, Paul T. Norton Endowed Professor, and his former student Daniel Steeneck received the Best Paper Award earlier this year. The paper was titled “Reverse Supply Chain Management: Determination of Optimal End-of Life Options for Products,” and they presented it at the 8th ISDSI International Conference held in Pune, India.

Dr. Don Taylor
Dr. Don Taylor

Dr. Don Taylor receives UMass Amherst Outstanding Alumni Award

(Update: September 4, 2015)  The full story was also published on Virginia Tech News.

(August 25, 2015)  Dr. G. Don Taylor, Department Head of ISE and Charles O. Gordon Professor, will be honored with the 2015 College of Engineering Outstanding Senior Alumni Award by the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. He will receive the award at the college’s homecoming reception in October, 2015. The award is bestowed on Taylor for his significant achievements, leadership, and service to the profession, university, and society, according to the award description.

Please go to the full story on College of Engineering News and UMass Amherst College of Engineering Outstanding Alumni Awards 2015 announcement.

ISE Welcomes Two  New Faculty in Fall 2015

(August 19, 2015)  The ISE Department welcomes two new faculty, Dr. Blake N. Johnson in Manufacturing Systems Engineering and Dr. Alejandro Salado in Management Systems Engineering.

Dr. Blake Johnson
Dr. Blake Johnson

Dr. Blake N. Johnson joined the ISE faculty as an Assistant Professor this summer. He holds a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and earned his PhD at Drexel University in 2013. He was a Postdoctoral Associate at Princeton University prior to coming to VT. He is teaching ISE 2204: Manufacturing Processes this fall semester.

Dr. Johnson is a highly accomplished scholar with a number of published journal articles and patents completed. Specifically, he focuses on the development of robotics-based advanced biomanufacturing systems using combinations of additive manufacturing and laser technology for fundamental research in biomaterials processing. His work has applications in biotechnology manufacturing with specific interests in customized 3D tissue engineering, biomedical devices, and human-machine interfaces. His cutting edge research should enable us to be one of the first ISE departments in the world working in his research area.

Dr. Alejandro Salado
Dr. Alejandro Salado

Dr. Alejandro Salado joined the ISE faculty as an Assistant Professor in Fall 2015 to bolster our research in the field of Systems Engineering. He has an extensive educational background, starting with BSc/MSc degrees in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from the Polytechnic University of Valencia. He earned two more MSc degrees from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia and an MEng degree at the esteemed Technical University of Delft in The Netherlands. He then earned a PhD in Systems Engineering from the Stevens Institute of Technology. He was a faculty member of the Vestfold Buskerud University in Norway before joining VT.

In terms of research, Dr. Salado is interested in the further development of the scientific foundations of Systems Engineering and the translation of these foundations into practice. Experience gained during his 10+ years of working in industry should help him to achieve his research goals. His extensive work background has helped him to develop expertise in requirements engineering, system architecture and design, qualification, verification and validation, and other forms of specialty engineering.

Three ISE professors and three students won IIE Awards

Dr. Subhash Sarin
Dr. Subhash Sarin
Dr. Kimberly Ellis
Dr. Kimberly Ellis
Dr. Hanif Sherali
Dr. Hanif Sherali

(August 18, 2015)  Three ISE Professors and three graduate students won institute-level awards from the Institute of Industrial Engineers (IIE) at the 2015 Annual Conference & Expo held in Nashville, TN.

Dr. Subhash Sarin won the prestigious David F. Baker Distinguished Research Award. The award "recognizes outstanding research in the profession. It is given for a career of accomplishments that broadly benefited practitioners, organizations, or other researchers rather than for a single activity or application." It is IIE's highest research honor.

Also, Dr. Kimberly Ellis and University Distinguished Professor Emeritus Dr. Hanif Sherali won the IIE Transactions "Best Application Paper in Scheduling and Logistics" award for their paper entitled, "Bulk Tank Allocation to Improve Distribution Planning for the Industrial Gas Industry.” The paper was co-authored with students Lance Saunders, Shengzhi Shao, and Charlie Crawford.

The awards and awardees are listed on the IIE Annual Conference & Expo 2015 page.

Dr. Christian Wernz received NSF EAGER Award

Dr. Christian Wernz
Dr. Christian Wernz

(August 3, 2015)  Dr. Christian Wernz, Assistant Professor at the ISE department, has been awarded an Early Concept Grant for Exploratory Research (EAGER) from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for "Advancing the Foundations of Systems Engineering through Multiscale Decision Theory."  The objective of this 2-year research project is to derive fundamental insights into the system design process by mathematically modeling the effects and interdependencies of organizational structures, incentives, time, and information on system value creation.

Five ISE Ph.D. Students received Best Paper and Honorable Mention Awards at the International System Dynamics Conference

5 students for best paper award (Mohammad Jalali, Armin Ashouri Rad, Oscar Herrera-Restrepo, Hui (Corinna) Zhang, and Arash Baghaei Lakeh)

Mohammad Jalali, Armin Ashouri Rad, Oscar Herrera-Restrepo, Hui (Corinna) Zhang, and Arash Baghaei Lakeh
(from left) Mohammad Jalali, Armin Ashouri Rad, Oscar Herrera-Restrepo, Hui (Corinna) Zhang, and Arash Baghaei Lakeh

(July 27, 2015)  Five ISE Ph.D. students received the best paper and honorable mention awards, respectively, at the 2015 International System Dynamics (SD) conference in Cambridge, MA. Mohammad Jalali, Armin Ashouri Rad, Oscar Herrera-Restrepo, and Hui (Corinna) Zhang received the Dana Meadows Award given as the best student paper for their paper, Information Diffusion through Social Networks: the Case of an Online Petition. The study was a novel combination of SD modeling and statistical analysis applied for understanding social dynamics of online petitions. They modeled a real world case and offered new insights into how social dynamics can result in successfully recruiting more supports for an online petition.

Arash Baghaei Lakeh received honorable mention of the best student paper award for his paper, Does Analytical Thinking Improve Understanding of Accumulation? The paper was co-authored by Dr. Navid Ghaffarzadegan. The paper described the investigation of people's difficulty in understanding accumulation, which is a fundamental concept in complex systems. Arash conducted an experiment with 400 individuals, and proposed a low-cost intervention to help improve individuals' understanding of the concept.

A former ISE Faculty Dr. Hazhir Rahmandad received the Jay W. Forrester Award, the most prestigious award in the SD Society. The award was given to the best publication in System Dynamics during the previous five years. Dr. Rahmandad received the award for his 2012 paper, Impact of Growth Opportunities and Competition on Firm-Level Capability Development Trade-offs, published in Organization Science. His presentation about the paper is available on YouTube at https://youtu.be/gbYrChNrbDU.

Official announcements about the awards and pictures are available at the System Dynamics Society website.

Dr. Christian Wernz received highly commended paper award

Dr. Christian Wernz
Dr. Christian Wernz
Hui Corinna Zhang
Hui Corinna Zhang

(June 29, 2015) Dr. Christian Wernz received the 2015 Highly Commended Paper Award from the journal Industrial Management & Data Systems for his paper, "International study of technology investment decisions at hospitals.”  The article was co-authored by Hui (Corinna) Zhang (ISE PhD student) and Dr. Kongkiti Phusavat (Kasetsart University, Thailand; ISE PhD alumnus).

Dr. Jaime Camelio has been promoted to Professor

Dr. Jaime Camelio
Dr. Jaime Camelio

(June 3, 2015) Dr. Jaime Camelio, Associate Professor and Rolls-Royce Commonwealth Professor of Advanced Manufacturing, has been promoted to the rank of Professor effective in August 2015 by the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors.

Two faculty received College of Engineering Dean's Awards for Excellence

Dr. Eileen Van Aken
Dr. Eileen Van Aken
Dr. John Shewchuk
Dr. John Shewchuk

(May 8, 2015)  Two ISE Faculty members were awarded at the 18th annual College of Engineering faculty reception.  Dr. Eileen Van Aken, Professor and Associate Department Head, received the College Award for Outreach Excellence, and Dr. John Shewchuk, Associate Professor, received the Dean's Award for Teaching Excellence.

For more information, please go to the full story "Engineering faculty receive dean's awards for excellence" on College of Engineering News. 

Chris Rowland won VT Innovation and Entrepreneurship Game-Changer award

Chris Rowland and Derick Maggard
Chris Rowland (right) and Derick Maggard, Executive Director of the Apex Systems Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Virginia Tech

(May 6, 2015) Chris Rowland, a Ph.D. student, received the Game-Changer award as one of the six Virginia Tech Student Innovator and Entrepreneur of the Year Awards. According to the award description, he has come up with a faster, greener way to create polymer nanomaterials, which are used in battery components, water filtration, and other applications. The Awards were presented by Derick Maggard, executive director of the Apex Systems Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

For more information, please go to the full story "Six students honored for innovation and entrepreneurship" on Virginia Tech News. 

Two ISE Research Centers will be at the VT showcase in Newport News on May 6

(May 1, 2015) Two ISE Research Centers, Center for Excellence in Logistics and Distribution (CELDi) and Center for High Performance Manufacturing, will be at the research showcase Virginia Tech will host at the Paragon Theater in Newport News City Center on May 6, 2015.  VT President Timothy Sands will be the keynote speaker.  

This event is free, and the on-site registration is available from 10am.

ISE Department Undergraduate Award recipients and 2015 Senior Design Award recipient teams were announced

(April 30, 2015) The recipients of the following ISE Department Undergraduate Awards were announced during the reception of the Senior Design Symposium on April 30, 2015.  Pictures of the Undergraduate Award recipients are posted on the ISE Dept. Undergraduate Award Winners page, and pictures of the Senior Design Award recipients are posted on the 2015 ISE Senior Symposium: Awards and Reception page. 

2015 ISE Department Undergraduate Awards

The Robert P. Davis Outstanding Junior Award: Morgan Sannes

The Robert D. Dryden Outstanding Senior Award: Zvonko Cindrich and Megan Dierolf

The Don Taylor Leadership Award: Meredith Johnson

2015 Senior (Capstone) Design

Performance Impact Award: Haley Baldwin, Tim Dumminger, Casey Glinowiecki, Drew McMahon, Shellie Williams

Innovation and Creativity Award: Israel Groves, Sejeong Kim, Jenna Reed, Patrick Stevens, Matthew Tilson

Project Management/Leadership Award: Patrick Ciboldi, Ian Eisele, Eric Graff, Vincent Sorrento, Mathew Tucker

Communication/ Presentation Award: Kelly Bennett, R.K. Durnwirth, Sam Greenlief, Britta Nally, Jennifer Yelpo

Application of ISE Tools & Methods Award: Emily Miluski, Taylor Rains, Jillian Robbins, Alex Ross, Matt Sullivan

Mohammad Jalali received the 1st place of 2015 WINFORMS Student Excellence Award

Mohammad Jalali
Mohammad Jalali

(April 24, 2015)  Mohammad Jalali, a Ph.D. candidate in the ISE Department, received the first place of 2015 Student Excellence Award by the INFORMS Washington DC Chapter (WINFORMS).  On April 21st, finalists for the award presented their work to the WINFORMS audience.  Mohammad’s presentation was titled, “A Simulation-Optimization Method for Quantitative Aggregation of Prior Statistical Findings - Case Study: Aggregation of 27 Predictive Models for Basal Metabolic Rate.”

Alpha Pi Mu announced the Outstanding Faculty and GTAs

Dr. Ran Jin
Dr. Ran Jin
Nevin Mutlu
Nevin Mutlu
Laura Peveler
Laura Peveler

(April 2015) The following faculty member and graduate students were recently voted as the Outstanding Faculty and GTAs, respectively.  

Outstanding Faculty:  Dr. Ran Jin

Outstanding GTAs:  Navin Mutlu and Laura Peveler 

In Memoriam: Paul Torgesen, Virginia Tech President Emeritus

Dr. Paul E. Torgesen
Dr. Paul Torgesen

(March 2015)  Dr. Paul Torgersen, who joined the ISE in 1967 and taught "Theory of Organization" until May 2014, passed away on March 29, 2015.  He was 83 years old.  For more information, please go to the news "In memoriam: Virginia Tech President Emeritus Paul Torgersen" on Virginia Tech News.

Related article: "Dr. Torgesen, King of Serendipity, Retires" (cover page on the Fall 2014 ISE Alumni Newsletter)

In Memoriam:  John Grado, alumus and namesake of Grado Department of Industrial & Systems Engineering

John Grado

John Grado
John Grado

(Updated on March 2015) John Grado, namesake of Virginia Tech's Grado Department of Industrial & Systems Engineering passed away on November 27, 2014 at age 87.  Fore more information, please go to the news "In Memoriam: John Grado, alumnus and namesake of Virginia Tech's Grado Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering" on Virginia Tech News.  

John Grado Obituary (PDF | 3MB)

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