Simpson receives American Society of Mechanical Engineers Sparks Medal

Curtis Chan
December 02, 2013

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Tim Simpson, professor of industrial engineering and mechanical engineering at Penn State, has been awarded the 2014 Ben C. Sparks Medal from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME).

Established in 1990, the Sparks Medal recognizes service to engineering education through "innovative, authentic, practice-based engineering design/build experiences to undergraduate students."

Simpson was honored for his numerous contributions to engineering education while he served as director of the Bernard M. Gordon Learning Factory from 2007 to 2012.

The Learning Factory melds real-world experience with classroom education by providing students with hands-on experiences through industry-sponsored and client-based capstone design projects. Under his leadership, the Learning Factory became the largest college-wide capstone design program in the United States.

Simpson will be recognized at the 2014 ASME International Mechanical Engineering Education Leadership Summit in March in San Juan, Puerto Rico, where he will receive a bronze medal, a $1,000 award and travel expenses for the conference.

A member of the Penn State faculty since 1998, Simpson serves as co-director of the Engineering Design and Optimization Group Laboratory and co-director of the Center for Innovative Materials Process through Direct Digital Deposition. His research centers on engineering design and design methodologies.

Simpson's awards include the National Science Foundation's Faculty Early Career Development Award, the American Society of Engineering Educators' Fred Merryfield Design Award and the SAE International's Ralph R. Teetor Educational Award. He is an ASME fellow and associate fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics.

Simpson received his bachelor's in mechanical engineering from Cornell University and his master's and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering from Georgia Tech.

  • Ben C. Sparks Medal

    The American Society of Mechanical Engineers' Ben C. Sparks Medal was established in 1990 to recognize eminent service to mechanical engineering or engineering technology education.

    IMAGE: American Society of Mechanical Engineers
Last Updated December 02, 2013