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The College of Engineering remains committed to designing the engineer of tomorrow. But what should the blueprint look like? What attributes should we be looking for in the engineer of tomorrow? Read more
News From the College
Corporate Sponsorships Help Design the Engineer of Tomorrow
Consumers Energy and GE are partnering with MSU’s College of Engineering to ensure that the next generation of engineers will be ready to address tomorrow’s critical challenges. They are the first two corporate sponsors in MSU’s new Engineering Theme Partnership program, an initiative of the Engineering Residential Experience (ERE) and first-year engineering programs.
Syed Hashsham, a professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, has led the development of a low-cost, hand-held device that can perform genetic analysis using smartphone technology. Called the Gene-Z device, it is capable of quantifying cancer markers as well as instantly identifying diseases attacking crops and plants. In addition, the device can be used to screen for dozens of pathogens in food, animals, and humans and is also being developed to diagnose routine tuberculosis and drug-resistant TB, determine HIV virus levels during treatment, and monitor overall antibiotic resistance.
If you believe that fingerprints are a sure-fire way to verify an individual’s identity, think again. The widespread use of fingerprint recognition systems today—at border crossings and during screenings for security access or employment background checks—has prompted a growing number of individuals to disfigure or surgically change their fingerprints so they can mask their identities. Anil Jain, University Distinguished Professor of computer science and engineering, along with his research team, has developed a novel technique that can help law enforcement and border control officials detect these altered fingerprints automatically. Read more
MSU Receives Motorola Solutions Foundation Innovation Generation Grant to Support Middle and High School Robotics Programs
For the fifth consecutive year, the College of Engineering received funding from the Motorola Solutions Foundation, the charitable arm of Motorola Solutions, Inc. A $50,000 Innovation Generation grant supports MSU’s Spartan Middle and High School Robotics Program—Beyond FLL (FIRST LEGO League). The Spartan Middle and High School VEX Robotics and FIRST LEGO League programs currently engage 250 middle school and high school students with a continuum of innovative engineering experiences, mentoring, and collaboration with MSU’s College of Engineering students. This new funding will allow the program to expand engineering outreach efforts into the Detroit and West Michigan schools. Read more
Student News & Accomplishments
A single mom—along with her two special-needs boys—will sure look sweet upon the seat of a bicycle built for . . . three? Thanks to a team of Michigan State University engineering students, Gina Ried and her two sons, Nathan and Dakota, will soon be pedaling around Lansing on their new bicycle. This project, along with several others, was on display during MSU’s College of Engineering Design Day on December 9. Read more
The MSU Women in Computing (WIC) program received the Return Path Student Seed Fund grant from the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) to help fund a Girl Scout Workshop on October 29. Each fall and spring semester, WIC members teach about 30 local-area Girl Scouts and their troop leaders basic programming, as well as how to create a web page using HTML. Funding from NCWIT and Return Path allowed MSU WIC to offer a new activity this semester—creating e-textiles (smart fabrics that enable computing, digital components, and electronics to be embedded in them). Read more
Alumni & Development News
Communicating with our alumni community of more than 25,000 men and women worldwide is a huge challenge—even with the availability of tools such as e-mail, Facebook, LinkedIn, smartphones, and iPads and other tablets that complement printed material. With this issue of e-Currents, we are beginning a survey of Spartan engineers to determine individual preferences for receiving information from the college. Read more.
Greg Charvat (BS ’02, MS ’03, PhD ’07), MSU electrical engineering alumnus and researcher at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Lincoln Laboratory, along with fellow researcher John Peabody, has created radar technology using microwaves that can “see” through concrete walls. The device has powerful implications for military operations, especially “urban combat situations.” Charvat notes that the original prototype of this system was made for his MSU PhD dissertation in the summer of 2007. Read more
Kristin Zimmerman (BS ’87, Mechanical Engineering; MS ’90, PhD ’93, Engineering Mechanics) is manager of advanced technology infrastructure at General Motors. A mechanical engineer with a pilot’s license, Zimmerman originally had her sights set on working in the space program. But a change in career trajectory instead has taken her around the world and back, as she works to help recharge Michigan’s automotive industry through energy efficiency. She credits her Michigan State education, and her ability to problem-solve in any situation, with giving her the flexibility to pursue new areas in her field and to make a contribution to the world. Zimmerman was recently featured in an MSU Spartan Saga. View the Spartan Saga