Pitt | Swanson Engineering
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May

May
9
2018

NCDMM Honors Howard A. Kuhn as the Recipient of the 2018 Lawrence J. Rhoades Award

Industrial

Reposted from the National Center for Defense Manufacturing and Machining (NCDMM). View the article here. Prestigious Award Recognizes Achievement in Dedication to Advancement of Manufacturing Technology Presented at NCDMM’s Annual SUMMIT Event Blairsville, Pa. — May 9, 2018. The National Center for Defense Manufacturing and Machining (NCDMM) proudly announces that today at its annual SUMMIT event, it awarded its highest honor, the Lawrence J. Rhoades Award, to Howard A. Kuhn, Ph.D., P.E. Each year, the NCDMM awards the Lawrence J. Rhoades Award to an individual who shares Mr. Rhoades’ tireless commitment, futuristic vision, and unwavering dedication to the defense manufacturing industry. “On behalf of all of us at the NCDMM, I am most honored to present the Lawrence J. Rhoades Award to our long-time friend and esteemed colleague, Dr. Howard Kuhn,” said NCDMM President and Executive Director Ralph Resnick. “Throughout his illustrious 50-year career, Howard has been a force within both the manufacturing industry and academic institutions, serving as an esteemed, innovative thought-leader and mentor. Howard also shares many of the same extraordinary qualities as Larry Rhoades and namesake of this award. You could say they are cut from the same cloth. Like Larry, Howard is also a visionary, as well as a collaborator in the truest sense of the word, possessing an almost effortless ability to bring and inspire mutual efforts together to advance manufacturing technology for the betterment of our industry. He has set a standard that many aspire to meet. “Therefore, in recognition of his tireless commitment, steady leadership, dedication, and actions on behalf of the national manufacturing community and the mission of NCDMM, we congratulate Dr. Howard Kuhn as the 2018 NCDMM Lawrence J. Rhoades Awardee,” continued Mr. Resnick. NCDMM established the Lawrence J. Rhoades Award to honor the memory of Mr. Rhoades whose entrepreneurial spirit and dedication to the advancement of manufacturing processes was known industry-wide. Mr. Rhoades was one of the founding fathers of the NCDMM, and an inaugural member of the Board of Directors where he served until his untimely death in 2007. At the University of Pittsburgh’s Swanson School of Engineering, Dr. Kuhn is an adjunct Professor in industrial engineering, instructing courses in manufacturing, product realization, entrepreneurship, and additive manufacturing. He also conducts research on additive manufacturing of biomedical devices for tissue engineering at the University. Dr. Kuhn also serves as a consultant at local industry-leading organizations, including America Makes, the National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute, which is managed by the NCDMM, and The Ex One Company. At America Makes, he is a Technical Advisor, teaching a course, titled “Fundamentals of Additive Manufacturing Materials and Processes.” Upon its founding in August 2012, Dr. Kuhn also served as the Acting Deputy Director of Advanced Manufacturing Enterprise. At Ex One, he is currently a Research Consultant, but also previously served as the Director of Prometal Technology for Ex One. Previously, Dr. Kuhn, as the co-founder of Concurrent Technologies Corporation (CTC), served as the company’s Vice President and Chief Technology Officer for 12 years. He also co-founded Deformation Control Technology, a consulting firm serving the metalworking industry. Prior to this, Dr. Kuhn held joint appointments in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and the Department of Material Science at Drexel University and the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Kuhn is a Fellow of the American Society for Materials International and SME. In 2008 and 2011, respectively, he received the ASM Gold Medal and the SME Eli Whitney Productivity Award. In 2014, America Makes awarded Dr. Kuhn with its Distinguished Collaborator Award for his exceptional commitment and dedication to advancing additive manufacturing technology, practices, and innovation in the manufacturing industry through collaborative partnerships and contributing to the overall mission of America Makes. Dr. Kuhn is a graduate of Carnegie Mellon University and pursued all of his undergraduate, graduate, and doctorial degrees in mechanical engineering at the university. He is a registered professional engineer in Pennsylvania. ### About NCDMM NCDMM delivers optimized manufacturing solutions that enhance the quality, affordability, maintainability, and rapid deployment of existing and yet-to-be developed defense systems. This is accomplished through collaboration with government, industry, and academic organizations to promote the implementation of best practices to key stakeholders through the development and delivery of disciplined training, advanced technologies, and methodologies. NCDMM also manages the national accelerator for additive manufacturing (AM) and 3DP printing (3DP), America Makes—the National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute. For additional information, visit NCDMM at ncdmm.org.
NCDMM

Apr

Apr
30
2018

Pitt Industrial Engineer Mostafa Bedewy Receives Top Honor from Society of Manufacturing Engineers

Industrial

PITTSBURGH (April 30, 2018) ... In recognition of his contributions to the field of nanomanufacturing, Mostafa Bedewy was named a 2018 recipient of the Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer Award from the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME). Dr. Bedewy is assistant professor of industrial engineering at the University of Pittsburgh’s Swanson School of Engineering, and principal investigator of the NanoProduct Lab at Pitt. The Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer Award is given to exceptional young manufacturing engineers (35 years old or younger) from academia and industry for their contributions in manufacturing. According to SME, recipients are selected based on work in emerging manufacturing applications, technical publications, patents, and academic or industry leadership. Dr. Bedewy, a member of SME since 2017, is among 18 recipients from the U.S. and China. “This is an incredibly competitive award, and we are proud that Mostafa has been recognized by his peers for his advances in nonmanufacturing and nanoscience,” noted Bopaya Bidanda, the Ernst Roth Professor and Chair of the Department of Industrial Engineering. “His interdisciplinary research has been a great addition to our department and this award truly validates his impact in the field.” Dr. Bedewy’s research interests include nanomanufacturing and micromanufacturing; surface engineering and coating technology; materials characterization and metrology; design and mechanics of surgical tools and medical devices; synthesis and self-organization of nanofilaments and fibers; bottom-up self-assembly of 2D/3D nanoparticles; and structuring of biointerfaces and biomolecular systems.“In our interdisciplinary research group, we leveraging precision engineering, biomimetic/bio-inspired designs, and quantitative tools to tackle fundamental research questions at the interface between nanoscience, biotechnology, and manufacturing engineering,” said Dr. Bedewy.He joined the Swanson School of Engineering in fall 2016 after a postdoctoral associate position in bionanofabrication at MIT. He completed his doctorate at the University of Michigan in 2013 after having received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mechanical design and production engineering from Cairo University. Dr. Bedewy’s other awards include the Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Award from the Oak Ridge Associated Universities (2017); the Robert A. Meyer Award from the American Carbon Society (2016); the Richard and Eleanor Towner Prize for Distinguished Academic Achievement from the University of Michigan (2014); and the Silver Award from the Materials Research Society (2013). ### About the NanoProduct LabThe NanoProduct Lab (nanoproductlab.org), also known as the Bedewy Research Group, focuses on fundamental experimental research at the interface between nanoscience, biotechnology, and manufacturing engineering. The group explores basic scientific discoveries and applied technological developments in the broad area of advanced manufacturing at multiple length scales, creating solutions that impact major societal challenges in energy, healthcare, and the environment.

Apr
17
2018

American Society of Safety Engineers Elects Joel Haight to Board of Directors

Industrial

PITTSBURGH (April 17, 2018) … The American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) announced that Joel M. Haight, associate professor of industrial engineering at the University of Pittsburgh Swanson School of Engineering, will join its 2018-19 Board of Directors as a Director-At-Large after a society-wide vote earlier this year. Dr. Haight’s term begins July 1 and lasts three years.“My own professional and personal values align greatly with ASSE’s mission, and I look forward to taking on a new role to help shape an organization that has done so much to help shape the safety engineering profession,” said Dr. Haight.The ASSE Board of Directors has four Directors-At-Large and assigns duties to them based on organizational need. Candidates must be a member of ASSE to appear on ballot for the Board of Directors election. They must be involved in an ASSE committee or task force, have a record of positive contributions to the safety and health profession, show support and understanding of the Society’s vision, and be a good motivator who is results-driven.Dr. Haight has been a member of ASSE since 1985. From 2011 until 2017, he served as the chair of the research committee for the ASSE foundation and a Board of Trustees member.Read the official ASSE press release at http://www.asse.org/asse-election-results-highlighted-by-medinas-move-to-president/. About ASSEFounded in 1911, the American Society of Safety Engineers is the world’s oldest professional safety society. ASSE promotes the expertise, leadership, and commitment of its members, while providing them with professional development, advocacy, and standards development. It also sets the occupational safety, health, and environment community’s standards for excellence and ethics.ASSE is a global association of occupational safety professionals representing more than 36,000 members worldwide. The Society is also a visible advocate for Occupational Safety and Health professionals through proactive government affairs at the federal and state levels and in member-led relationships with key federal safety and health agencies.About Dr. HaightJoel M. Haight joined the Industrial Engineering Department at the University of Pittsburgh in 2013. In the previous 33 years he served four years as Chief of the Human Factors Branch at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) - National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) at their Pittsburgh Office of Mine Safety and Health Research, where he managed a research branch of 35-40 researchers in the areas of ergonomics, cognitive engineering, human behavior, and training. Dr. Haight also served for nearly 10 years, as an Associate Professor of Energy and Mineral Engineering at the Pennsylvania State University. Dr. Haight worked as a manager and engineer for the Chevron Corporation for 18 years prior to joining the faculty at Penn State. His research interests include health and safety management systems intervention effectiveness measurement and optimization and human performance measurement in automated control system design.He is the editor in chief and contributing author of Handbook of Loss Prevention Engineering published by J.W. Wiley and Sons in 2013 and the Safety Professionals Handbook published by the American Society of Safety Engineers in 2012. In addition, he has published nearly 60 refereed journal articles and conference proceedings.  Dr. Haight is an active member of ASSE, HFES, IISE, and AIHA. He is a licensed professional engineer in Pennsylvania and Alabama and certified by the Board of Certified Safety Professionals and the American Board of Industrial Hygienists. ###
Matt Cichowicz, Communications Writer
Apr
4
2018

Swanson School’s Department of Industrial Engineering Presents Tracey Travis with 2018 Distinguished Alumni Award

Industrial, Office of Development & Alumni Affairs

PITTSBURGH (April 4, 2018) … This year’s Distinguished Alumni from the University of Pittsburgh Swanson School of Engineering have worked with lesson plans and strategic plans, cosmetics and the cosmos, brains and barrels and bridges. It’s a diverse group, but each honoree shares two things in common on their long lists of accomplishments: outstanding achievement in their fields, and of course, graduation from the University of Pittsburgh.This year’s recipient for the Department of Industrial Engineering is Tracey T. Travis, BSIE ‘83, Executive Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer of The Estée Lauder Companies.The six individuals representing each of the Swanson School’s departments and one overall honoree representing the entire school gathered at the 54th annual Distinguished Alumni Banquet at the University of Pittsburgh’s Alumni Hall to accept their awards. Gerald D. Holder, US Steel Dean of Engineering, led the banquet for the final time before his return to the faculty this fall.“Today, at the Estee Lauder Corporation as CFO and Executive Vice President of Finance, she is responsible for global finance, IT, investor relations and process improvement among other duties,” said Dean Holder. “Our Industrial Engineering program is the second oldest in the U.S., and one of the top 10 public programs. It has graduated outstanding IEs throughout its history, and Tracey is no exception.”About Tracey TravisTracey Travis received a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh and an MBA in Finance and Operations Management from Columbia University. She is currently the Executive Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer of The Estée Lauder Companies with responsibilities for global finance, accounting, investor relations, information technology, and strategy and new business development. She also co-leads the company’s major cost savings and process improvement initiatives.  Previously, Ms. Travis was Senior Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer at Ralph Lauren Corporation from January 2005-July 2012. In both roles, she led and supported multiple acquisitions, the development of enhanced capital structures and shareholder returns, and technology transformations.     Ms. Travis was employed with Limited Brands in Columbus, Ohio from 2001-2004 as Chief Financial Officer of Intimate Brands, Inc. and as Senior Vice President of Finance for Limited Brands. From 1999-2001 she was Chief Financial Officer of the Americas Group of American National Can. Prior to this position, she held various management positions at Pepsico/Pepsi Bottling Group from 1989-1999. Ms. Travis began her career at General Motors first as an engineer, then after receiving a GM Fellowship to pursue her MBA, she returned to General Motors as a Financial Executive.She currently serves as a director on the boards of Accenture PLC and Lincoln Center Theater in New York and previously on the boards of Campbell Soup Company and Jo-Ann Stores Inc. where she chaired the Audit Committee. She is a member of the Board of Overseers for Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business and recently served on the University of Pittsburgh Board of Trustees.  Treasury and Risk Management magazine recognized Ms. Travis as one of the Top 25 Women in Finance in 2005 and one of the 100 Most Influential People in Finance in 2012. Institutional Investor magazine granted her the Best CFO award in 2008 and Black Enterprise magazine named her one of the Top 100 African Americans in Corporate America in 2009 and 2017. In 2011 Ms. Travis served as an inaugural member of the Wall Street Journal’s CFO Forum and in 2016 she received Legal Momentum’s Aiming High Award. ###
Matt Cichowicz, Communications Writer
Apr
4
2018

Industrial Engineering’s Joel Haight Discusses Workplace Automation at Health and Safety Conference

Industrial

PITTSBURGH (April 4, 2018) … Joel M. Haight, associate professor of industrial engineering at the Swanson School of Engineering and director of the Safety Engineering Program, delivered the opening keynote at the National Health & Safety Leaders’ Summit during the Safety 360 conference on March 27 – 28 in Auckland, New Zealand.His speech titled “Safety in the digital era – can you have the best of both worlds?” examined living and working with rapid technological advancement, particularly the necessity for human workers to prepare for interacting more and more with machines and the dangers of abandoning human oversight in the workplace for complete automation.“We cannot just remove the human in the name of effectiveness, efficiency, or safety,” said Dr. Haight during the keynote. “The human role has to change and our human operators must adapt. Overall system performance will be better if there is effective human-machine integration.”The Safety 360 conference focuses on best practices for health and safety professionals across all sectors and industries with legislative updates, case studies, interactive panel discussions, and inspirational stories. Its four summits explore topics in health and safety leadership, hazardous substance management, health and wellbeing, and occupational health.About Dr. HaightJoel M. Haight joined the Industrial Engineering Department at the University of Pittsburgh in 2013. In the previous 33 years he served four years as Chief of the Human Factors Branch at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) - National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) at their Pittsburgh Office of Mine Safety and Health Research, where he managed a research branch of 35-40 researchers in the areas of ergonomics, cognitive engineering, human behavior, and training. Dr. Haight also served for nearly 10 years, as an Associate Professor of Energy and Mineral Engineering at the Pennsylvania State University. Dr. Haight worked as a manager and engineer for the Chevron Corporation for 18 years prior to joining the faculty at Penn State. His research interests include health and safety management systems intervention effectiveness measurement and optimization and human performance measurement in automated control system design.He is the editor in chief and contributing author of Handbook of Loss Prevention Engineering published by J.W. Wiley and Sons in 2013 and the Safety Professionals Handbook published by the American Society of Safety Engineers in 2012. In addition, he has published nearly 60 refereed journal articles and conference proceedings.  Dr. Haight is an active member of ASSE, HFES, IISE, and AIHA. From 2011 until 2017, he served as the chair of the research committee for the American Society of Safety Engineers foundation and Board of Trustees member. He is a licensed professional engineer in Pennsylvania and Alabama and certified by the Board of Certified Safety Professionals and the American Board of Industrial Hygienists. ###
Matt Cichowicz, Communications Writer
Apr
2
2018

Swanson School students capture top prize and more at tenth annual Randall Family Big Idea Competition

Bioengineering, Chemical & Petroleum, Electrical & Computer, Industrial, MEMS, Student Profiles

Innovation Institute News Release With a blast of confetti falling from above the stage at the Charity Randall Theater, the participants in the 2018 Randall Family Big Idea Competition celebrated the culmination of two months of extra-curricular work on ideas for new products ranging from a software platform to connect hunters to landowners to a new insulin pump for diabetics, to a wearable earbud for helping disabled people control devices with eye movement. And 13 of the 40 finalist teams celebrated sharing the $100,000 in prize money. This year’s competition was the largest yet, with more than 300 students of all levels, from freshman to doctoral, participating in the initial round comprising more than 100 teams. Teams led by Swanson School of Engineering students captured at least one win in every place. The winner of the $25,000 top prize was Four Growers, an interdisciplinary group of students led by Dan Chi of the Swanson School of Engineering. They are developing a robotic system for harvesting tomatoes in commercial greenhouses. Next up for Four Growers will be representing Pitt as its entrant in the ACC InVenture Prize competition April 4-6, 2018, at Georgia Tech University, where each university in the Atlantic Coast Conference competes against each other in an innovation pitch competition. Four Growers is one of two Pitt teams that have been accepted into the prestigious Rice Business Plan Competition the same weekend, meaning they will have to split the team to compete both in Atlanta and Houston. The other Pitt entrant is FRED, which has developed a flexible platform for dynamic social science modeling. “This is the first time Pitt has had a team accepted in the Rice competition in its 17-year history, so having not one but the maximum allowed of two teams from the university accepted is a big deal,” said Babs Carryer, Director of Education and Outreach for the Innovation Institute, who oversees the Big Idea Competition. This years’ competition marked the 10th anniversary and it included the announcement that Pitt trustee Bob Randall and his family are donating $2 million to establish the Big Idea Center at the Innovation Institute to support student entrepreneurship. See that full story here. Pitt Chancellor Patrick Gallagher credited Bob Randall’s vision for embedding entrepreneurship into the fabric of the university with bringing about a culture change that has witnessed a dramatic increase in the experiential learning opportunities in entrepreneurship that have been built around the Big Idea Competition in the past four years. “Bob’s vision has transformed this campus in so many powerful ways. We thank you and your family for not only being a great friend and a generous benefactor but for being a catalyst for change,” he said. Chancellor Gallagher said the crucible of the Big Idea competition will serve the participants well in whatever career route they take, whether it’s launching a startup or leading new initiatives in a larger organization. “If you think about the experience of being an entrepreneur, there’s almost nothing like it. Conversion of a thought into something that’s tangible and real and of value is the magic of entrepreneurship, and to do it is a seminal learning experience,” he said. The Big Idea prize winners will proceed into the Blast Furnace student accelerator beginning in May to further develop their ideas with the goal for some of creating startup companies around their ideas. The winning Swanson School of Engineering teams include: 1st place: $25,000Four GrowersTeam: Brandon Contino (ECE), Daniel Chi (MEMS), Daniel Garcia (Neuroscience), Jiangzi Li (Katz), Rahul Ramakrishnan (CMU)Idea: Automation of tomato harvesting in commercial greenhouses 2nd place: $15,000 (1 out of 3 winners)Re-VisionTeam: Yolandi van der Merwe (BioE), Mark Murdock (Pathology/Badylak Lab)Idea: Therapeutic platform to promote ocular tissue healing after injury 3rd place: $5,000 (2 out of 4 winners) Aqua Bio-Chem DiamondTeam: Mohan Wang (ECE), Jingyu Wu (ECE)Idea: Environmentally friendly removal of pollutants from contaminated waste water PCA BuddyTeam: Akhil Aniff (BioE), Patrick Haggerty (BioE), Sarah Cummings (Nursing), Tyler Martin (BioE)Idea:  Pump that gives children the ability to self-administer medication 4th place: $2,000 (2 out of 4 winners) Steeltown RetractorTeam: Chris Dumm (MEMS), Jack Bartley (MEMS)Idea: Allows surgeons to operate more efficiently and naturally by simplifying surgical tool placement and adjustment GlucaglinTeam: Shane Taylor (ChemE), Evan Sparks (ChemE), Jake Muldowney (ChemE)Idea: Multifunctional pump for diabetics Best Video Award EXG H+TechnologiesTeam: Ker Jiun Wang (BioE), Nicolina Nanni (IE), Yu Liu, Yiqiu Ren (ECE), Kaiwen You (ECE), Xiangyu Liao (ECE), Quanbo Liu (ECE)Idea: System to use eye movement for control of a powered wheelchair, cell phone, or other Internet of Things (IoT) devices
Michael C. Yeomans, Marketing and Special Events Manager, Innovation Institute

Mar

Mar
22
2018

Southwestern Pennsylvania Manufacturers Get Student Support

Industrial, Student Profiles

PITTSBURGH (March 22, 2018) … Small- to medium-sized companies in southwestern Pennsylvania have a friend in the University of Pittsburgh. For the past two years, Pitt Industrial Engineering (IE) students have worked with manufacturing extension partnership Catalyst Connection to make productivity and operations improvements throughout the region.“The collaboration with Catalyst Connection began during the fall semester in 2016,” says Louis Luangkesorn, assistant professor of industrial engineering at the Swanson School of Engineering and Senior Design Capstone Course advisor. “Senior design projects require students to complete a complex project based on challenges they’ll face in the workplace so using these projects as an opportunity to help local businesses is a natural fit.” Catalyst Connection is one of only 60 manufacturing extension partnership centers throughout the 50 states. They provide improvement services and consultation to companies in the 14 counties of southwestern Pennsylvania. After recognizing the many similarities between Catalyst Connection’s work and the work Pitt students were doing in the classroom, the two joined forces.“Pitt students are brought in for the heavy lifting: time studies, development of systems, scheduling, and resource plans,” says Eric MacDonald, senior continuous improvement consultant at Catalyst Connection. MacDonald works directly with companies to determine their consulting needs and coordinates their demand with Dr. Luangkesorn’s supply of students.Last semester, a team of five Pitt seniors assisted All-Clad Metalcrafters, an internationally recognized cookware manufacturer in Canonsburg, Pa. They focused on improving the “cladding” process, which consists of heating, bonding, and “blanking” metal sheets into disks.“Cookware manufacturing begins with a round disk called a ‘blank.’ The first step involves putting the blank in an oven and cooking it properly based on the temperature, time, and design. The Pitt team looked at this first step of the process to see if they could improve it. In the end, they found ways to improve four steps of the process,” says Mike Whaley, process engineer at All-Clad.Contributions from the Pitt teams during the spring and fall semesters in 2017 resulted in an estimated annual savings of $466,057 for All-Clad Metalcrafters. “The best resource I was provided was intelligent questions to things I have not yet resolved. Those questions drove new paths in the project, and those paths led to breakthrough innovation,” adds Whaley.Evan Bair, who last December received a B.S. degree in Industrial Engineering, was part of the fall 2017 Pitt team at All-Clad. They compiled temperature profiles of the product in the oven, executed trials with cost-reduced designs, and wrote data-based reports that recommended ways to improve All-Clad’s manufacturing processes.“Being able to work alongside full-time engineers in a manufacturing environment is so helpful in teaching students the skills that can’t be taught in the classroom: working on multi-discipline teams, dealing with setbacks caused by events that are out of the students’ control, interacting with people who work on the plant floor. The list could go on, but I feel that this kind of work is a vital part of any student’s education,” says Bair.Another Pitt team traveled to Anchor Distributors in New Kensington, Pa. to study the company’s more than 130,000 square foot warehouse. Most of Anchor’s business come from distributing books, and the company began working with Catalyst Connection to improve warehouse efficiency and prepare for potential expansion. “The Pitt students were able to quantify the effect of a new layout and firmed up our decision to go in a new direction and get on the right track,” says Rob Whitaker III, financial analyst at Anchor Distributors.The company’s original “serpentine pattern” for fulfilling orders had workers walking an average of 10 to 12 miles per day. By changing the warehouse to a six-zone layout in which products are organized based on popularity, the students demonstrate with engineering models how the company could increase productivity while lowering labor and overtime cost.“I was impressed by how competent the students were and how well they worked together,” says Whitaker. “It’s encouraging to know that this is the next generation about to enter the work force.”Seventeen teams journeyed off Pitt’s campus and helped Pennsylvania companies last year. According to Dr. Luangkesorn, these experiences have lasting effects on the students as well as the companies because the collaborations explore new ideas and apply fresh thinking to traditional manufacturing processes.“While the University of Pittsburgh rightly celebrates the achievements of its best students, the success of so many of these senior capstone projects speaks to the quality and prospects of the entire Pitt engineering student body, not only the top students,” says Dr. Luangkesorn. ###
Matt Cichowicz, Communications Writer
Mar
19
2018

Industrial Engineering’s Jeff Kharoufeh Named IISE Fellow

Industrial

PITTSBURGH (March 19, 2018) … The Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers (IISE) will honor Jeff Kharoufeh, Professor of Industrial Engineering at the Swanson School, with the award of Fellow for his outstanding contributions to serving and advancing the field of industrial engineering. A Fellow is the highest classification of IISE membership.“The IISE is the largest professional society for industrial engineers, and only 20 fellows are named each year. Having Jeff included in such an elite group underscores decades of commitment to his work and substantial impact on shaping the discipline,” said Bopaya Bidanda, the Ernest E. Roth Professor and Chair of Industrial Engineering at Pitt.Dr. Kharoufeh is currently a Senior Member of IISE. He will receive the award at the IISE Annual Conference in Orlando this May.About Jeff KharoufehJeff Kharoufeh is Professor of Industrial Engineering. He specializes in the application of probability and stochastic processes to the modeling, design, performance evaluation, and optimal control of stochastic systems. His recent work focuses on the modeling, analysis, and optimization of energy systems, reliability theory, maintenance optimization, and models for wireless sensor networks. He is a former president of the IISE Operations Research Division and former Department Editor of IISE Transactions. Professor Kharoufeh earned BS and MS degrees in Industrial & Systems Engineering from Ohio University and a PhD in Industrial Engineering & Operations Research from the Pennsylvania State University. He is currently an Area Editor of Operations Research Letters, Associate Editor of Operations Research, and a member of the Editorial Board of Probability in the Engineering Informational Sciences. Dr. Kharoufeh is a Senior Member of IISE and a Professional Member of INFORMS and the Applied Probability Society.About IISEIISE is the global association of productivity and efficiency professionals specializing in industrial engineering, healthcare, ergonomics, and other related professions. IISE is where these varied fields come together to advance the engineering profession through networking, training, and knowledge sharing. ###
Matt Cichowicz, Communications Writer

Feb

Feb
20
2018

Pitt Among Top Fulbright Grant Producers

Industrial, Office of Development & Alumni Affairs

University of Pittsburgh News Release The University of Pittsburgh is one of the nation’s top producers of Fulbright students and scholars for the 2017-18 academic year, according to the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Pitt is among only 16 institutions in the country to be named a top producer of both the Fulbright U.S. Student and Scholar programs. The Fulbright Program is the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program. Its U.S. Student Program provides grants for individually designed study and research projects for English Teaching Assistant Programs. The U.S. Scholar Program offers awards for teaching, research or both in over 125 countries to college and university faculty as well as other professionals. Pitt affiliates earned 10 student and six scholar awards this year. The Chronicle of Higher Education highlighted the achievement on Sunday. “This designation, which just 15 other institutions across the nation received, speaks to the University of Pittsburgh’s extraordinary capacity to attract student scholars,” says Pitt Chancellor Patrick Gallagher. “We are proud of their success and grateful that they are helping to advance Pitt’s mission of leveraging knowledge for society’s gain.” This is the seventh time in eight years Pitt has earned this distinction for the Fulbright U.S. Student Program. “We are extremely proud of our students’ success with Fulbright scholarships,” says Brian Primack, dean of the University Honors College. “The fact that we consistently maintain our status as a Top Producing Institution demonstrates Pitt’s commitment not only to high quality instruction and research but also extending our global reach.” Four Pitt alumni are currently on Fulbright English Teaching Assistant grants in host countries around the world, including Tiffani Anne Humble and Amber Montgomery in Jordan, Melissa Kukowski in South Korea and Marjorie Tolsdorf in Russia, while John McGovern, Daniel Snyder, Sophia Winston and Benjamin Zhu are teaching in Brazil Two Pitt graduate students — Emilie Rose Coakley and Trevor Thomas Wilson — are on Fulbright research grants in Indonesia and Russia. Pitt also was the only Pennsylvania institution on the list of top producing Fulbright U.S. Scholars. Those include the following: Caitlin Bruce of the Department of Communication within the Kenneth P. Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences is researching a project called Citizens Voices in Aerosol: Leon’s Graffiti Worlds at the Ibero-American University in Mexico. Lauren Jonkman of the School of Pharmacy will support teaching and research at a primary clinical pharmacy practice at the University of Namibia School of Pharmacy. Lisa Maillart of the Swanson School of Engineering last fall lectured and conducted research on Markov decision models for health care maintenance optimization at Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands. Mary Rauktis of the School of Social Work last fall lectured and conducted research on measuring the restrictiveness of living environments at out-of-home care for children and youth at the University of Porto in Portugal. Vanessa Sterling of Pitt Study Abroad and the University Center for International Studies will attend the Fulbright’s U.S.-Taiwan International Education Administrators Program in Taipei, Taiwan, this spring. Amy Williams of the Department of Music within the Dietrich School is lecturing and researching a project called Two Music Courses and an Original Song Cycle in Irish at University College Cork in Ireland. About the Fulbright Program Since its inception in 1946, the Fulbright Program has provided more than 380,000 participants — chosen for their academic merit and leadership potential — with the opportunity to exchange ideas and contribute to finding solutions to shared international concerns. Over 1,900 U.S. students, artists and young professionals in more than 100 different fields of study are offered Fulbright Program grants to study, teach English and conduct research abroad each year. The Fulbright U.S. Student Program operates in over 140 countries throughout the world. The Fulbright U.S. Student Program is a program of the U.S. Department of State, funded by an annual appropriation from the U.S. Congress to the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, and supported in its implementation by the Institute of International Education. The Fulbright Program also awards grants to U.S. scholars, teachers and faculty to conduct research and teach overseas. In addition, some 4,000 foreign Fulbright students and scholars come to the United States annually to study, lecture, conduct research and teach foreign languages. For more information about the Fulbright Program, visit http://eca.state.gov/fulbright. ###
Kevin Zwick, University of Pittsburgh News
Feb
15
2018

Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences spotlights Pitt INFORMS student chapter

Industrial

The University of Pittsburgh INFORMS Student Chapter primarily serves graduate students in the Industrial Engineering Department to encourage students to expand their networks and enhance their academic skills. In the past couple of years, we have made an effort to begin offering more academic and social events to our student members and have recently advertised our events more broadly to students in the business and engineering schools. We have a Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/groups/PittINFORMS/about/) and maintain our Chapter’s page (http://connect.informs.org/universityofpittsburgh/home) on the INFORMS website to update our members on upcoming events, as well as summarize recent events. Read the full spotlight here. About INFORMS With over 12,500 members from around the globe, INFORMS is the leading international association for professionals in operations research and analytics. INFORMS promotes best practices and advances in operations research, management science, and analytics to improve operational processes, decision-making, and outcomes through an array of highly-cited publications, conferences, competitions, networking communities, and professional development services.

Feb
8
2018

Pitt Undergraduates Finish in Second Place of Ergonomics Design Competition for Third Consecutive Year

Bioengineering, Chemical & Petroleum, Industrial, Student Profiles

PITTSBURGH (February 8, 2018) … Undergraduate students from the University of Pittsburgh Swanson School of Engineering finished in second place overall for the third year in a row at the International Ergonomics Design Competition hosted by Auburn Engineers, Inc.“We entered six teams this year, and two of them finished in the top five with one team finishing as the runner-up again,” said Joel Haight, associate professor of industrial engineering and director of Pitt’s Safety Engineering Program. Dr. Haight is faculty advisor to the Ergonomic Design Competition teams.Throughout the fall semester, students worked on a Preliminary Design Project to identify workplace stressors and apply ergonomic design principles to alleviate them. This year’s challenge centered on improving an operating room for veterinarians treating large dogs. The Final Design Project, which the students had to complete in 48 hours, involved the evaluation and redesign of a work station at a small engine repair shop.The Pitt teams comprised students from the departments of industrial engineering, bioengineering, chemical engineering, and psychology. According to Dr. Haight, the competition came down to the wire, with the Pitt students just barely edged out of the first place spot.“Our students were up against graduate students at almost all of the schools, and our top team came in just behind a team of graduate students from the University of Buffalo,” noted Dr. Haight.In addition to the two top five teams, the four other Pitt teams received honorable mentions, meaning they finished among the top 14 teams. A total of 28 teams competed, including students from the University of Michigan, Auburn University, Texas A&M, Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon (Mexico), Virginia Tech, Concordia, and others.In response to the success of Pitt’s undergraduate students’ performance over the past three years, David C. Alexander, president of Auburn Engineers and competition director, collaborated with Dr. Haight to write a joint paper about the competition and its contribution to education.“We submitted the paper to the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers’ annual conference in Orlando, and it’s been accepted. We will talk about the competition and industrial engineering education at Pitt to conference attendees this May,” said Dr. Haight. Image (left to right): Top five finishers Dr. Haight, Rip Rucker (IE), Lauren Czerniak (IE), Sean Callaghan (IE), and Connor Bomba (IE) Image (left to right): Dr. Haight, James Oosten (BioE), Katelyn Axman (BioE), and Matt Astbury (BioE) Image (left to right): Dr. Haight, Mackenzie Cavanaugh (IE), Aster Chmielewski (IE), Tom Kramer (IE), and Chris Herrick (IE) Image (left to right): Matt Jones (Psy), Charlie Gates (IE), and Dr. Haight, missing from photo: Jack Clark (ChemE) Image (left to right): Evan Poska (IE), Matt Hoge (IE), Chris C.J. Luther (IE), and Dr. Haight ###
Matt Cichowicz, Communications Writer

Jan

Jan
3
2018

Get Well Sooner

Industrial

PITTSBURGH (January 3, 2018) … One of the few places more nerve-wracking for a parent with a sick child than the emergency room is the waiting room outside the emergency room. Rushing to the hospital only to sit and wait can increase anxiety and worry, especially with new parents.“I’ve seen firsthand some patients whose total time in the emergency department was quite long, and during our busiest times, three hours or more of their time was in the waiting room,” says Anna Svirsko, a third-year graduate student studying industrial engineering at the University of Pittsburgh.Svirsko is part of a team of industrial engineers at Pitt’s Swanson School of Engineering who partnered with Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC to create a “Wait Time Indicator” and help patients and their families in the Emergency Department (ED) at Children’s Hospital estimate when a doctor will be ready to see them. The indicator is part of a larger project to reduce overall patient length of stay in the ED.“The indicator uses the average wait time over the past hour and the number of people currently in the waiting room to predict how long it will take until the next exam room will open,” says Louis Luangkesorn, assistant professor of industrial engineering at Pitt and faculty advisor to the students working at Children’s Hospital.Wait times are updated every three minutes and displayed in the ED waiting room as well as on Children’s Hospital’s website. In recent years, Children’s Hospital has seen an influx of patients, encouraging leadership eager to find a cure for the crowds.“We’ve seen a steady increase in our yearly patient volume nearly each of the past 15 years,” says Richard Saladino, MD, chief of pediatric emergency medicine at Children’s Hospital. “I think the new generation is becoming more informed and seeking medical care more often and at a lower threshold in recent years.”Children’s Hospital serves people from western Pennsylvania as well as Ohio and West Virginia. Unexpected spurts of patients can quickly cause the ED to become overcrowded and understaffed. Removing uncertainty encourages patients to stick around for treatment, or choose alternatives forms of care provided by Children’s Hospital, such as Children’s Express Care centers.“Families who become frustrated with a long wait will occasionally leave without being seen by a doctor if they don’t have a sense of when they will be seen,” says Dr. Saladino. “Perceived wait time is much different than actual wait time and therefore, being upfront with expectations can have a big impact on patient experience.” The underlying data behind the Wait Time Indicator is capable of predicting days or even hours when the ED can expect to see many patients. These “surge times” and staffing information are incorporated into another tool that can help guide clinicians on predicting when the ED will be busy, allowing them to call in more doctors.“The surge tool can identify a surge around two hours before it hits its peak. In the past, additional doctors usually wouldn’t arrive until after the peak and the crowd had already started to thin. Now, we can better anticipate the rush,” says Dr. Luangkesorn.Pitt students began working with the ED at Children’s Hospital when former associate professor Bryan Norman directed senior design projects to help solve hospital problems. The students started treating the ED’s ailments by using workplace efficiency techniques and strategies they were learning in their classes.“They started with semester-long projects, which were worthwhile experiences but limited in terms of what you could accomplish,” says Dr. Luangkesorn. “Children’s Hospital wanted to expand its relationship with Pitt Engineering to work on bigger problems.”Dr. Luangkesorn and other members of the Industrial Engineering faculty started actively recruiting students from their classes to work at Children’s Hospital. Over the past three years, about 15 to 20 students have been involved with projects aimed at reducing wait times, optimizing staff efficiency, increasing resource utilization and creating a better environment for patients.“The general goal of working with Children’s Hospital is to reduce treatment times and improve patient experience,” says Jayant Rajgopal, professor and graduate program director in the Department of Industrial Engineering at Pitt. “We started with a customer satisfaction approach to improving patient satisfaction at the hospital. We surveyed the patients, and one major complaint was that wait times were too long.”Now the Pitt industrial engineers attend weekly meetings with the ED doctors and staff. They are members of the Children’s Hospital Emergency Department Length of Stay Task Force.“We were invited to be a part of the Task Force about two years ago,” says Dr. Rajgopal. “We have a whole team of people committed to the ultimate goal of reducing overall length of stay in the emergency room—without compromising quality treatment.”The Pitt team has also introduced new strategies to prepare the Children’s Hospital staff for the urgency of an emergency. They implemented the “5S” methodology for organizing equipment. The “S-es” stand for “sort, set in order, shine, standardize, and sustain” and were originally part of a Japanese business principle that helped enable lean or “just-in-time” manufacturing.Students worked with the Environmental Services staff to improve how quickly rooms are cleaned, when previously Children’s Hospital staff members consulted a central computer to find which rooms needed cleaning. They now use iPads on the cleaning carts that give them updates on the move, saving back-and-forth trips to the stationary computer. “Cleaning faster means those rooms are available for the next patient sooner,” adds Svirsko.“The Wait Time Indicator is just one project of many,” says Dr. Luangkesorn. “Children’s Hospital has decreased average time to rapid triage by almost 70 percent, getting the patients in most immediate need of attention more quickly in front of a doctor. We’ve reduced average length of stay for all patients over the past few years, too, and we expect to keep getting better as more students get involved.” ###
Matt Cichowicz, Communications Writer