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Contact Information: Tanya Klein Public Relations 973-596-3433

NJIT Awards Set Sept. 3, 2008; Bell Labs Physicist Delivers Keynote Address

NJIT will mark, once again, the new school year with University Convocation, an annual celebration and awards ceremony recognizing  students, faculty and staff accomplishments. The ceremony is set for Sept. 3, 2008, at 3 p.m., Jim Wise Theatre, Kupfrian Hall on the NJIT campus. A reception will follow.

“We confer these designations annually upon select NJIT faculty, alumni, and staff who have demonstrated the highest level of excellence over a sustained period,” said NJIT Provost Priscilla Nelson. “We reward them not only for their achievement, but because their leadership serves as a testament to NJIT’s commitment to excellence.”

Alice E. White, vice president, Alcatel-Lucent Bell Labs North America, will be the keynote speaker. White has a broad technical background in experimental solid state physics and optics, including fabrication and implementation of optical fiber devices and integrated optical components for optical networks, semiconductor processing and devices, ion beam interactions with solids, and low temperature and vacuum techniques, with over 120 publications.

NJIT alumnus Peter Papanicolaou, president of J.F. Contracting Corporation, a Brooklyn construction and engineering firm, will receive NJIT’s Edward F. Weston Medal for Professional Achievement.  Papanicolau started his career as a researcher at NJIT, where he developed a technology for cleaning up toxic and contaminated soils at industrial sites and military bases.

Five professors will receive NJIT’s Excellence in Research Award from their respective colleges: Rajesh N. Davé, PhD, of Hopewell, distinguished professor (Newark College of Engineering); Zeynep Celik, PhD, of New York City, distinguished professor (New Jersey School of Architecture); David B. Rothenberg, PhD, of Cold Spring, NY, professor (College of Science and Liberal Arts); Bruce A. Kirchoff,  PhD, of Maplewood, distinguished professor (School of Management); and Yehoshua Perl, PhD, of New York City, professor (College of Computing Sciences).

The Master Teacher designation is NJIT’s most prestigious recognition for faculty who continuously exhibit high-quality teaching. Honorees include Rajesh Davé, PhD, of Hopewell (Otto H. York Department of Chemical, Biological and Pharmaceutical Engineering); Zoi-Heleni Michalopoulou, PhD, of Montclair, professor (department of mathematical sciences); Methi Wecharatana, PhD, of Parsippany, professor (department of civil and environmental engineering).

Promoted to distinguished professor will be Atam Dhawan, PhD, of Randolph (department of electrical and computer engineering) and John Federici, PhD, of Westfield (department of physics).

Promoted to professor will be Michael Booty, PhD, of Newark, (department of mathematical sciences); John Carpinelli, PhD, of Wayne (department of electrical and computer engineering); Nancy Coppola, DA, of  Mountain Lakes (department of humanities); Shanthi Gopalakrishnan, PhD, of Paramus (School of Management); Taha Marhaba, PhD, of Bridgewater (department of civil and environmental engineering); Rajiv Mehta, PhD, of Perth Amboy (School of Management); and Kwabena Narh, PhD, of Wayne (department of mechanical engineering).

Promoted to associate professor with tenure will be Roy Goodman, PhD, of Brooklyn, NY (department of mathematical sciences); Quentin Jones, PhD, of New Brunswick (department of information systems); Katia Passerini, PhD, of Brooklyn, NY (School of Management); Zeyuan Qiu, PhD, of Livingston (department of chemistry and environmental science); and Louis Tao, PhD, of Elmhurst, NY (department of mathematical sciences).

Sui-Hoi Edwin Hou, PhD, of Green Brook, associate professor (department of electrical and computer engineering) will receive NJIT’s Excellence in Service Award.

One of the nation's leading public technological universities, New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) is a top-tier research university that prepares students to become leaders in the technology-dependent economy of the 21st century. NJIT's multidisciplinary curriculum and computing-intensive approach to education provide technological proficiency, business acumen and leadership skills. With an enrollment of more than 10,000 graduate and undergraduate students, NJIT offers small-campus intimacy with the resources of a major public research university. NJIT is a global leader in such fields as solar research, nanotechnology, resilient design, tissue engineering, and cyber-security, in addition to others. NJIT ranks 5th among U.S. polytechnic universities in research expenditures, topping $110 million, and is among the top 1 percent of public colleges and universities in return on educational investment, according to PayScale.com.