Weekly Memo

July 8, 2013

Dear members of the Hajim School community:

     The results of our Clothesline Festival contest are in, and the winners are:
     First Place ($300): Ethan Siegler '13, mechanical engineering, for The Big Day.
     Second Place (Apple Ipod Touch): Amanda Preske, chemistry graduate student, for Circuit Board Cufflinks.
      Third Place ($100): Diana Olvera, biomedical engineering master's student, for Glass Bottom.
      Click here for a look at what they created, and their commentary. These winning entries will be on display at our tent Sept. 7-8 at Rochester’s premier fine arts and craft showcase, which is held each year on the grounds of the Memorial Art Gallery. This year we encouraged submissions that would examine the ways in which art, science, and technology "imaginatively intersect and innovatively influence our world." I think our winners have done a great job of that. Thanks to Sandra Turner for coordinating this and to the Sage Art Center for partnering with us on this year's contest.

    Hajim School students now have another exciting study abroad opportunity. Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, which is the top Asian university three years running according to QS rankings, has signed an academic exchange agreement with our undergraduate College, allowing the equivalent of four full-year undergraduate students to participate from each school each year. HKUST, which was founded in 1991 and offers all courses in English, had an enrollment of 12,584 as of Dec. 31. Its School of Engineering, ranked 27 among the world’s top 200 according to QS, includes departments in chemical and biomolecular engineering, civil and environmental engineering, computer science and engineering, electronic and computer engineering, industrial engineering and logistics management, and mechanical engineering. Six ChemE courses at HKUST have already been pre-approved as equivalent to courses here, and no doubt others can be approved as well in consultation with department advisers. As I have stressed again and again, I’d like to see more Hajim School students studying abroad, and here’s one more very good reason to do so!

     During a recent trip to visit HKUST and other universities in Singapore and Macau, I met a lot of interesting people, saw some great campuses, and had some constructive discussions about future research collaborations and student exchanges with institutions such as Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. And I was astounded by what I saw in Macau. In just four years, a entirely new campus for the University of Macau -- some 80 buildings, at a cost of $2 billion -- has been built on the banks of the Pearl River and will be open to students this fall. The university is putting a big emphasis on data science and data storage, in addition to other engineering areas, with new programs in material science as well. We'll be exploring expanded student exchange opportunities with this institution as well.

   Congratulations to Optics Prof. Robert Boyd, Physics Prof. John Howell, Boyd team members Omar Magana-Loaiza and Mehul Malik, and Physics grad student Gregory Howland, whose paper on "Compressive object tracking using entangled photons" was picked as a Science magazine Editor's Choice. The paper demonstrates how advanced imaging techniques can be used to track a moving target, requiring many fewer measurements to do so, and describes how such a resource-efficient strategy has real-world applications for stealth imaging of moving targets. The paper was originally published by the American Institute of Physics' Applied Physics Letters. Click here to read the paper.

   And congratulations to Richard Waugh, chair of Biomedical Engineering who, along with Michael Bulger, associate professor with the Center for Pediatric Biomedical Research,  and James Palis, professor of Pediatrics, Hematology and Oncology, are the Clinical and Translational Science Institute's 2013 Incubator Program awardees. They will investigate a potential source to artificially generate human blood, in collaboration with Laura Calvi, associate professor of Medicine (Endocrine/Metabolism), Neurosurgery, and Pharmacology and Physiology, and Alan Smrcka, who holds the Louis C. Lasagna Professorship in Experimental Therapeutics, and is professor of Pharmacology and Physiology and of Biochemistry and Biophysics. The increased demand for blood transfusions, coupled with persistent bottlenecks in donated blood supplies, has created an intensified interest in developing ex vivo methods of producing human red blood cells. The CTSI Incubator program, created in 2010, is a “super-pilot” program designed to develop research collaborations that will catalyze breakthrough treatments, diagnostic techniques, or quantum leaps in community health.

      As always, keep me updated and have a great week.


Robert L. Clark
Professor and Dean