Weekly Memo

Oct. 13, 2014

Dear members of the Hajim School community:

    Many of our Hajim School faculty members already participate in The Xerox Undergraduate Research Fellow Program – and I encourage more of you to consider doing so. This program gives our rising juniors and seniors a chance to work with a faculty member on a research project full time during the summer, and continue that research as an independent study during the following fall or spring. This has been very beneficial for our students, and 69 percent of participants have gone on to graduate school.

     If you are a faculty member interested in participating next summer, please send your research description to Nick Valentino (nicholas.valentino@rochester.edu) by October 20. This will allow us to match interested students with faculty members in a timely fashion, so both students and faculty can plan their summer commitments early next year. For questions please contact Nick at x57512. Click here to read more about this year's cohort of fellows and how the program is benefiting them.

    Sophomores and juniors interested in becoming Xerox Engineering Research Fellows next summer are invited to drop by the Kearns Center (Dewey 4-160) from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. next Monday through Friday to talk with the staff about the program. Please take advantage of this opportunity!

    Michelle Relin, a junior majoring in optical engineering, scored two goals and assisted on another to lead the UR field hockey team to a 6-1 victory over St. Lawrence recently – and in the process became our school’s all-time leading scorer. (Click here to read more.) “We all come from different backgrounds,” Michelle says of her 17 teammates, “but every time we step onto the field we are one. And for me it’s both rewarding and an honor to be a part of something so moving.” Michelle was a mentor for visiting high school students this past summer when the Institute of Optics hosted its second Photon Camp; Dan Smith, the Institute’s undergraduate program manager, describes Michelle as a “great role model for young women.” “I want to make a difference in some way,” Michelle says of her plans for the future. Congratulations, Michelle, on the difference you are already making!

    And congratulations to another Hajim scholar-athlete,  Sarah Wayson '15 of Biomedical Engineering, who is among 12 members of the women's softball team named to the National Fastpitch Coaches Association All-America Scholar Athlete team.

     Recent research published by The Hamilton Project, a Washington D.C. based organization focused on economic policy, showed that the top nine highest paying college majors were all in the fields of engineering, with chemical engineering grabbing the top spot at slightly over $2 million lifetime earnings. The research incorporated census data to determine the highest paying college majors both annually and cumulative lifetime earnings.

    Evan Granite '94 (PhD Chemical Engineering) is co-editor of Mercury Control for Coal-Derived Gas Streams, just published by Wiley-VCH. This handbook covers the technologies for mercury capture and measurement from coal-derived flue gas that are viable for meeting the strict standards set by environmental protection agencies. Evan is a Research Group Leader at the Department of Energy's National Energy Technology Laboratory. Congratulations, and thanks for the update, Evan -- and I urge other UR engineering alumni to keep us apprised of your accomplishments as well!

     Another of our alumni, Katie Schwertz, who received her BS in optics here in 2008, will be guest speaker at a brown bag lunch with Women in Engineering (WiE) from 11:30 a.m. to 12:20 p.m. Wednesday in Goergen 108.  Katie is an optomechanical design engineer for Edmund Optics in Tucson, Ariz. She will discuss career paths and share her experiences. All faculty and students are invited to attend. For more information, contact Jianing Yao.
      A warm welcome to members of the Industrial Associates Program, who are meeting today and tomorrow at The Institute of Optics for the annual fall meeting. We appreciate your support! The program, which connects companies with Institute faculty, students and research, is celebrating its 40th anniversary. Click here for this week's agenda.

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


Robert L. Clark
Professor and Dean