Weekly Memo

Dear members of the Hajim School community:

The academic year may be winding down, but our faculty and students are not—and this week I offer plenty of proof.

First, I want to applaud Andrew Carnegie Professor of Physics and Professor of Optics Joe Eberly. The Optical Society of America has selected him to receive the 2012 Distinguished Service Award, given in celebration of leadership in the field. OSA noted in particular Dr. Eberly’s role as founding editor of Optics Express, a truly groundbreaking peer-reviewed scientific journal. This is a most well deserved honor.

Congratulations are also in order for Jason Inzana, a second-year graduate student in Biomedical Engineering Professor Hani Awad’s Muskuloskeletal Tissue Engineering Lab. He is the school’s first BME grad student to win a National Science Foundation Research Fellowship. These prestigious, federally sponsored grants reward students' outstanding accomplishments, and recognize their potential to contribute to science and engineering in the United States, by providing support for their doctoral training. Jason will be given annually for 3 years a stipend of $30,000, a $10,500 tuition allowance, and opportunities to conduct research around the world.

Meanwhile, OSA and the journal Applied Optics recently underscored the importance of the work being done here at the Hajim School. They have named the 50 most cited articles over the journal’s 50-year history—and ranked impressively high on that list are two papers with University ties. Robert E. Hopkins Professor of Optics Jim Fienup’s “Phase retrieval algorithms: a comparison” has been cited 1,280 times since its publication in 1982, putting it at fourth place on the list. And John Bruning, the retired president and CEO of Corning Tropel Corp. and current University Trustee, co-authored the 13th-most cited “Digital Wavefront Measuring Interferometer for Testing Optical Surfaces and Lenses” (1974), which has been cited 728 times. (Thomson Reuters provides the citation count.) Check out the full list at http://www.opticsinfobase.org/ao/journal/ao/anniversary/50mostcited.cfm.

I was also pleased to learn last week that Jennifer Kruschwitz, an Adjunct Professor in the Institute of Optics, is networking group Digital Rochester’s 2012 Technology Woman of the Year. Ms. Kruschwitz, who has worked at our own Laboratory for Laser Energetics and at Bausch + Lomb, was selected from 11 nominees, each recognized for significant career accomplishments in a high-technology field, and for being a role model in the community.

And finally, I am pleased to report that the Hajim School was well represented last weekend at the USA Science & Engineering Festival in Washington, D.C. Associate Dean of Education and New Initiatives Wayne Knox and Assistant Dean Lisa Norwood were there helping staff a booth featuring videos of the school and live demonstrations of lasers, optics, sound, and light. They showed visitors how polarized light is important in 3-D movies, how color blindness can be detected, and how optical fiber guides light. The University co-sponsored this year’s festival, which was established in 2010 with the goal of getting the public excited about and engaged in science—a worthy cause indeed.

Given that my wife and I are both hosting a UR alumni group at archeological sites in Italy this week with mechanical engineering professor, Renato Perucchio, it seems appropriate to close with arrivederci!


Rob L. Clark
Professor and Dean