Four engineers to be honored at University-wide Faculty/Staff Awards

Penn State will honor four members of the College of Engineering faculty with the 2012 Faculty/Staff Awards. The annual awards recognize high levels of academic excellence, outstanding leadership and meritorious service among employees from across campuses, colleges and administrative units. This year, the 34 recipients of awards will be honored at a ceremony at noon on April 19 at the Nittany Lion Inn.

Christine Masters, associate professor of engineering science and mechanics, received the 2012 George W. Atherton Award for Excellence in Teaching, which honors excellent teaching at the undergraduate level. Masters teaches large lecture classes and has integrated the use of "concept questions" and electronic clickers to encourage class participation and monitor understanding of concepts. She also serves as undergraduate program coordinator and advises 180 undergraduates in the engineering sciences honors program.

Mark Maughmer, professor of aerospace engineering, received the Alumni/Student Award for Excellence in Teaching and was named a 2012 Penn State Penn State Teaching Fellow. Maughmer developed the Flight Vehicle Design and Fabrication course upon joining the Department of Aerospace Engineering faculty in 1984. The course, which has received national attention, immerses undergraduate students in many aspects of aerospace engineering, including fabrication and testing of full-scale components. Maughmer has received other teaching awards including the Penn State Engineering Alumni Society Outstanding Teaching Award and Premier Teaching Award. He was also honored by the American Society of Engineering Education with the Fred Merryfield Engineering Educator Design Award in 2009.

Irene Ferrara, senior instructor of engineering at Penn State Altoona, was honored with the 2012 Penn State Excellence in Advising Award, which recognizes excellence in general advising, academic and career guidance, enthusiasm, assistance in decision-making and goal setting. Ferrara serves as the coordinator and sole adviser of the Electro-Mechanical Engineering Technology Program and has developed practices including creating and updating program grids for students enrolled in the major, contacting students before scheduling each semester and ensuring students are taking actions to be successful. Additionally, she serves as a member of the Penn State Altoona Advising Task Force and is a recipient of the 2011 Penn State Engineering Alumni Society Outstanding Advising Award.

Ali Borhan, professor of chemical engineering, was awarded the 2012 Graduate Faculty Teaching Award in recognition of his outstanding teaching and advising of graduate students. Borhan, who joined the department 23 years ago, teaches graduate level courses in chemical engineering and has a reputation among students for teaching class without using notes. He also serves as a graduate program coordinator in the Department of Chemical Engineering and advises graduate students in the department. Borhan has received other awards including the Penn State Engineering Alumni Society Outstanding Teaching Award and Premier Teaching Award.

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Last Updated April 17, 2012