Dr. Percy Pierre

Current Research and Education Projects

Sloan Engineering Program: Principal Investigator

The Sloan Engineering Program began in 1998 with the support of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. It is designed to recruit and mentor underrepresented minority doctoral students in the College of Engineering. Recruitment focuses on the historically Black universities, on the University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez, on the winners of GEM fellowships, and other sources of underrepresented minority students. The mentoring program includes a special orientation for new students, a weekly luncheon meeting designed to provide useful information to the Sloan students as well as build a mutually supporting community of students. Sloan Students receive assistance personal and professional mentoring from Pierre along with their research advisors. Dr. Barbara O’Kelly, the Coordinator of the program, also provides assistance and advice to the students.

Since 1998, the program has had over 100 students. Ninety five percent have received at least a master’s degree. About one third have received the doctoral degree. In 2008, the programs received national recognition when Dr. Pierre received the Lifetime Mentor Award from the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He collaborates with faculty submitting proposal to the National Science Foundation on the “broader impact” section of their proposals. 

Graduate Assistantship in Areas of National Need (GAANN): Principal Investigator

The Graduate Assistantships in Areas of National Need program is supported by the US Department of Education to prepare domestic students for research careers in engineering areas of national need. This program provides assistantship support for six domestic engineering doctoral students. The students work with individual research advisors. The general area of their research is “Enabling Technologies for Wireless Sensor networks”.

Cyber infrastructure, Training, Education, Advancement and Mentoring (CI-TEAM): Co-Principal Investigator

This project proposes to demonstrate a new real-time interactive and collaborative cyberinfrastructure for teaching and training hands-on nanotechnology. The approach is based on the recent advances in Internet and robotics technologies to enable new and innovative methods of teaching and training for university students and professionals involved with nanotechnology. The goal of this proposed project is to demonstrate how our newly developed cyberinfrastructure will enable people at different geographic locations to work or learn together and be able to control a remote nanomanufacturing system or scientific instruments based on haptic feedback such as force refection in addition to video and audio feedback. As a result, safe, reliable and efficient Internet-based collaboration and learning environment can be achieved.


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