Electrical engineering's Urbina named Fulbright Scholar

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Julio Urbina, associate professor of electrical engineering at Penn State, has been awarded a Fulbright Scholarship.

The Fulbright Scholar Program, administered through the Council for International Exchange of Scholars, is the country’s premier academic exchange effort, attracting 800 U.S. faculty and professionals each year to 140 countries to lecture, teach and conduct research.

With the award, Urbina said he plans to return to his native Peru and teach at the Universidad Nacional de Ingenieria (UNI) in Lima, focusing on radar remote sensing and software-defined radio.

"I grew up in a very poor suburb of Lima, Peru, but was fortunate enough to study and complete my undergraduate education at UNI. I was also fortunate to have great mentors in Peru, whom guided and encouraged me to go an extra mile and pushed me to pursue an advanced degree in the U.S.," Urbina said. "I would like to introduce the students to a basic idea of the American Dream, that is, no matter who you are or how you started out, if you work hard, you can build a decent life for yourself and an even better life for your children."

He continued, "When I came to the U.S., I was exposed not just to American cultures, but also to many other cultures. I would like to share some of those experiences with students at UNI. I believe that my background can be a bridge to connect Peruvian and American cultures in a unique way at both personal and professional levels."

Urbina has been a member of the Penn State faculty since 2006. His experience includes serving as a radio frequency engineer at the Jicamarca Radio Observatory in Peru, a visiting lecturer at the University of Illinois, a visiting scientist with the Space and Atmospheric Sciences Group at the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico and an assistant professor of electronics and computer engineering technology at the University of Arkansas.

Urbina's research interests include meteor science, radar remote sensing of the upper atmosphere and ionosphere, radio wave propagation, reconfigurable virtual instrumentation for ionospheric science, software-defined radars and cognitive architecture and microwave communications.

Last Updated March 18, 2014