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OSU lecturer recognized as distinguished faculty
Dr. Jennifer Glenn, industrial engineering and management lecturer, recently received a Distinguished Faculty Award from the Order of Omega, a leadership honor society, and the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs at Oklahoma State University.  “This award is very meaningful to me since my job as a lecturer focuses on teaching,” says Glenn. “I love mentoring college students, teaching them concepts and encouraging them in their studies, and I am thankful that the students deem this valuable and chose to honor me with this award.” Glenn is an OSU alumna who earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in industrial engineering and management. Her areas of interest include applied statistics and process improvement, economic analysis, service systems and processing and engineering education and mentoring. “The award for Jennifer is outstanding and well-deserved,” says Randy Seitsinger, associate dean of academic affairs for the College of Engineering, Architecture and Technology. “I really appreciate the effort she devotes to teaching and her commitment to students.” In 2012, Glenn received the CEAT Diversity Faculty of the Year award, and in 2015 she received the Excellent Young Teacher award for CEAT by the Halliburton Foundation. She currently serves as an advisor to the Society of Women Engineers. About Order of Omega The purpose of Order of Omega is to recognize those fraternity men and women who have attained a high standard of leadership, to encourage them to continue along this line and to inspire others to strive for similar attainment.
Wed, 10 May 2017 11:13:20 -0500
OSU student Nick Nelsen awarded Goldwater Scholarship
Oklahoma State University student Nicholas H. Nelsen has been selected as a 2017 Barry Goldwater Scholar, one of the most prestigious honors in the nation for students seeking careers in the natural sciences, mathematics, and engineering. Nelsen, from Stillwater, is an OSU Honors College junior in a triple degree program, which includes honors bachelor’s degrees in mechanical engineering and mathematics, and a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering. He is the 20th student from OSU to be awarded this highly-competitive national scholarship. Nelsen has an extensive history of undergraduate research at OSU, including projects focusing on the fluid dynamics of blood flow in the heart and the mathematics of lung-like fractals. His mentors include Dr. Arvind Santhanakrishnan and Dr. Henry Segerman. Nelsen has shared his research at the American Physical Society’s Division of Fluid Dynamics annual meeting in Portland, Ore., and the Gulf Coast Research Symposium at Rice University in Houston. He has won awards presenting at the 2017 Joint Mathematics Meetings in Atlanta, the 2017 Oklahoma/Arkansas Mathematical Association of America section meeting in Norman, and the EPSCoR Oklahoma Research Day at the State Capitol. “A multitude of strong programs and excellent faculty here at OSU have allowed me to thrive as I explore my diverse set of research interests in both engineering and mathematics,” Nelsen said. “I am honored and humbled to represent OSU as the newest Goldwater Scholar.” Nelsen’s career goal is to earn a doctorate in mechanical engineering or applied mathematics and pursue a research and development career at a national laboratory or major research institution within the field of theoretical and numerical fluid mechanics. He is a National Merit Scholar and the recipient of the Niblack Research Scholar award, Wentz Research Grant, and Kerr Research Fellowship. While on campus, Nelsen has been active in Pi Mu Epsilon, the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Pi Tau Sigma, and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. OSU students Alicia Aguilar, a junior from Edmond, and William “Colby” Starr, a junior from Tulsa, were awarded honorable mentions in the national Goldwater Scholarship competition. Aguilar is double majoring in chemical engineering and biochemistry. She plans to earn a medical doctorate and a doctorate of philosophy, and study specific signal pathways linked to autoimmune disease. Starr, who is double majoring in microbiology and molecular genetics, as well as biochemistry and molecular biology, is also minoring in religious studies. He plans to earn a doctorate and study antibiotic resistance mechanisms to further understand and eradicate bacterial infections. A total of 240 Goldwater Scholars were selected this year, based on academic merit and the potential for a research career, from a field of 1,286 natural sciences, mathematics, and engineering students nominated by campus representatives from among 2,000 colleges and universities nationwide. The one- and two-year scholarships cover tuition, fees, books, room and board up to a maximum of $7,500 per year. The Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation was established by Congress in 1986 to serve as a living memorial to honor the lifetime work of Senator Barry Goldwater, by providing scholarships to college sophomores and juniors who intend to pursue research careers in the natural sciences, mathematics, and engineering.  Today, Goldwater alumni can be found conducting research that is helping defend the nation, find cures for catastrophic diseases, and teaching future generations of scientists, mathematicians, and engineers. By Jim Mitchell
Wed, 10 May 2017 11:20:50 -0500
OSU student team receives more than $90,000 at Rice Business Plan Competition
Rice Competition Oklahoma State University student startup team MITO Material Solutions has once again proved itself by placing second at the prestigious Rice Business Plan Competition, an annual collegiate pitch competition hosted by Rice University. MITO is composed of MBA student Haley Kurtz, chief executive officer, and mechanical engineering technology student Kevin Keith, chief operating officer, and are coached by assistant professor of Entrepreneurship Richard Gajan in the Spears School of Business. MITO’s product is an adhesive epoxy additive which allow manufacturers to double the durability or significantly decreases the weight of composite materials utilized in the aerospace, recreation and automotive industries. MITO received $50,000 in investment prizing for placing second, provided by the Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship and sponsored by Finger Interest and the Anderson Family Fund at the Greater Houston Community Foundation. Keith placed fifth in the Mercury Fund Elevator Pitch Competition and received $500 in cash. Kurtz received a total of $40,000 in investment prizing for winning the Courageous Women Entrepreneur award, provided by nCourage Entrepreneurs Investment Group. “The Rice Business Plan Competition is the richest and largest business plan competition in the nation,” Kurtz said. “It was an honor to compete with more than 40 teams from five continents and place second in the competition. We were kind of the underdog in this competition, as the Rice Business Plan Competition hosts a lot of more technology-focused startup teams, but we had the upper hand of being able to clearly present an executable plan on how to take our product to market. “We have learned so much throughout this competition, and we are grateful for the support from our advisor, Richard Gajan, and the OSU entrepreneurial ecosystem.” Previously, MITO placed second in the Baylor Business New Venture Competition in February and took home $35,000 in investment prizing. The team also placed first in the 2016 Donald W. Reynolds Governor’s Cup, hosted by i2E in Oklahoma City, in the High Growth Graduate Division and was awarded $20,000. MITO Material Solutions is a part of accelerateOSU, the institute for new venture creation in the School of Entrepreneurship at OSU’s Spears School of Business. The program provides entrepreneurial startups a platform that allows exploration of business ideas and resources. Gajan is the director of the program. “accelerateOSU has replaced the Student Startup Central that we used to have and has moved to a location in downtown Stillwater,” Gajan said. “It will serve as a platform for startups in all stages of development and offers resources and guidance. The institute will also be open to the community as well as OSU students, as we hope to cultivate an entrepreneurial spirit in the city of Stillwater.” To learn more about MITO Material Solutions, visit To learn more about accelerateOSU, visit For more information about the Rice Business Plan Competition, visit By: Ariel West PHOTO: CUTLINE: From left, Richard Gajan, Haley Kurtz, Kevin Keith and Range Vaidyanathan at the Rice Business Plan Competition.
Thu, 13 Apr 2017 11:02:37 -0500
Poetry as the building blocks of engineering
Quite the juxtaposition of words, yet exactly those used as inspiration by James Manimala, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering. Manimala discovered a correlation between the two subjects while analyzing the poem “I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud” by William Wordsworth. The fourth line of its second stanza reads “A host, of golden daffodils”. In reflection on that particular phrase, Manimala focused on the long “o” repeated throughout the line and how the subtleness of the sounds impacted the overall effect of the piece. Poets and writers refer to this literary device used as a building block of verse as “assonance.” In that moment, he realized the same principle could be applied to his research in mechanical metamaterials. Just as the soft sound of the long “o” created a desired rhythm, he could make repeated alterations within existing materials to achieve the desired effect he sought. Manimala’s research focuses on introducing internal features into materials to get a desired transformation across structures. In practical terms, if a host material can be altered through “clever little dynamics” to change the material, then existing materials can be transformed to realize unprecedented dynamic characteristics. He compares the process to crafting a recipe that has a complicated list of exotic ingredients, but he gets to determine how much of which ingredients to use and in what way to control the flavor of the dish. When applied to metamaterials, this is a groundbreaking approach based on integrating mechanical assonance and inertance. Such metamaterials can steer, focus, disperse or even reject mechanical disturbances and also act as “tuned mass participants”, which have a relatively small static mass but a dynamic mass presence a few orders of magnitude greater. The uniqueness of Manimala’s research is one of the characteristics that sets it apart. The foundations of his theory were published recently in the Journal of Applied Physics and the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America. The publications led to his receiving the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Young Faculty Award, which provides $498,000 over two years with the possibility of a $500,000 follow-on director’s fellowship. DARPA historically funds high-risk, high-payout projects that have the potential to alter the footprint of modern technology. Due to the nature of DARPA, Manimala’s research will focus on defense applications, including microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). The basic technology of MEMS has existed since the 1980s and has since been utilized for atomic clocks, inertial sensors for missiles and even for micro-robots in biomedical applications.  Manimala will use his mechanical assonance principle to explore mechanical encryption for crucial military devices. In other words, he will encode the device in a way that can only be decoded through his specific type of signal processed through mechanical assonance. This development, if successful, will transform the way MEMS are used for defense purposes. Through this project, OSU will partner with such universities as Stanford and Purdue. Manimala’s experiments require highly specialized types of materials and miniaturized manufacturing that are only available at those academic institutions or at national labs such as Sandia. Manimala’s project will also build relationships with a variety of Department of Defense agencies through site visits and communicating with warfighters and defense technologists. He also anticipates working with a handful of national laboratories and defense suppliers due to the specific nature of his research. Over the course of the two-year project, Manimala and his team will perform experiments on a microscopic level. They will utilize the Solid and Structural Dynamics Lab (SSDL) on OSU’s campus to analyze the effects of vibrations on metamaterials up to the microscale — about the width of a human hair. By the end of the project, Manimala expects to have a device prototype for DARPA to review. Manimala’s groundbreaking theory also has practical application outside of defense purposes. He says the principle is scalable and can be applied to macroscale areas such as space and nuclear infrastructure as well as the medical field. In space, Manimala says mechanical assonance can be applied during launch situations where the event is typically forceful and violent. “When launching a device into space, you need to isolate sensitive payloads from adverse vibrations,” he says. “These payloads have to survive the launch. Assonance-based vibration isolators provide a means to sequester or redirect undesirable mechanical disturbances to protect such valuable assets during their journey into space.” The same idea is used when considering the applications for nuclear infrastructure. For example, the earthquake and ensuing tsunami that hit Japan in 2011 caused serious concern for the nuclear power plant located on the island. Through the utilization of mechanical assonance, the materials used to build a nuclear power plant could be altered to manipulate and reject the energy of the waves caused by a natural disaster, rendering the structure more secure. Manimala also recognizes the potential for energy harvesting through his principle. He uses the medical field as an example, specifically ongoing research on pacemakers. These devices are implanted in the body through an invasive surgical procedure. The battery life currently only lasts six to 10 years, meaning someone struggling with a severe health issue must go back under the knife. Mechanical assonance may provide a solution by creating a harvester that can cope better with fluctuations in the heart’s vibrations. In other words, the human heart is constantly beating and producing kinetic energy but there is variability depending on the heart rate. Manimala’s application of assonant metamaterials within the pacemaker could provide the passive-adaptive stability needed to harvest energy from the person’s beating heart to power the device indefinitely. This technology could drastically change the quality of life for millions of people who live with the device. Manimala’s theories and his future discoveries promise to bring forth results that will alter the footprint of structural materials. His work at OSU could affect society on a global scale and significantly alter the military, space and energy industries. Five simple words with three long o’s could be the key to a new era of metamaterials engineering.
Tue, 11 Apr 2017 12:12:49 -0500
Three Minute winners meet head-to-head in 2017 3MC competition
The Oklahoma State University Graduate College will host its second President’s Fellows’ Grand Three Minute Challenge (3MC) competition April 13 in the Student Union Theater at 3:30 p.m. The 3MC competition celebrates the success of the Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) and Three Minute Presentation (3MP) in a head-to-head competition of winners from the OSU 2016 3MP and the 2017 3MT®. The 3MC is sponsored by the OSU President’s Fellows, a society made up of passionate and loyal OSU alumni and supporters of university priorities through the leadership of President Burns Hargis. The first 3MT® competition at OSU was held in 2013. Two years later, OSU launched its 3MP competition, the first in the country. The 3MT® competition is reserved for thesis master’s and Ph.D. students, while the 3MP is for non-thesis students, education specialists and graduate certificate students. As with the 3MT® and 3MP, students in the Three Minute Challenge must present their thesis or dissertation research for the 3MT® winners or disciplinary non-thesis topic for the 3MP winners and its significance in less than three minutes, using only one PowerPoint slide, to a general audience. Students are judged on their communication style, comprehension of material and audience engagement.  Deepak Kumar, a master’s student in Food Science, was awarded first place for his presentation on increasing protein in the diet of people from developing countries using microbes to reduce malnutrition in the 3MT® finals last month. Kumar is currently gearing up to compete in the Grand Challenge. "It’s a great feeling to move to the next level in the competition, and I look forward to competing with non-thesis folks,” he said. “Now that I have my script ready, I try to repeat it at least 20 times a day while walking or driving my car to work. My confidence increases every time I practice my speech." The 3MT® and 3MP finalists and People’s Choice winners who will compete in the 3MC with Kumar are: Natalie Miller, a non-thesis master’s student in communication sciences and disorders Grant Lapke, a non-thesis master’s student in international agriculture Tanner Roark, a non-thesis master’s student in international agriculture Siddharth Suresh, a non-thesis master’s student in telecommunications management Varsha Akkaloori, a non-thesis master’s student in business analytics Deepak Kumar, a thesis master’s student in food science Jennifer Rudd, a doctoral student in veterinary biomedical sciences Joyce Nabissaalu, a doctoral student in design, housing and merchandising Eranda Ekanayake, a thesis master’s student in mathematical and aerospace engineering Christina Sharkey, a doctoral student in psychology For more information, visit
Wed, 10 May 2017 13:02:48 -0500
CEAT’s Center for Local Government Technology offers training courses
The College of Engineering, Architecture and Technology’s Center for Local Government Technology (CLGT) has several training courses available beginning Monday, April 10.  Upcoming classes include: April 10: Designing Pedestrian Facilities for Accessibility (DPFA), Kiamichi Technology Center, McAlester, OK April 12: Designing Pedestrian Facilities for Accessibility (DPFA), Eastern Okla. Co. Tech Center, Choctaw, OK April 15: Traffic Incident Management Basics, Cherokee Nation EMS Center April 17: Designing Pedestrian Facilities for Accessibility (DPFA), Great Plains Technology Center, Lawton, OK April 19: Designing Pedestrian Facilities for Accessibility (DPFA), Autry Technology Center, Enid, OK April 19: Unit V – Personal Property Appraisal, Home2 Suites, Tulsa, OK April 27: Pilot Escort Training, CLGT Building, Stillwater, OK NOTE: Certain classes are offered in multiple locations on different dates. The courses are targeted for people in leadership positions in government entities. These include city and county government employees, as well as tribal government employees, elected officials and those in management positions. In addition, engineers and architectural designers can also benefit from the classes. “We offered some courses last year, and they were really well received,” says Doug Wright, director of CLGT. “There was such a big demand that former class attendees and the civil rights division at ODOT requested that we do these four new classes.” To see a full list of classes and to enroll, visit About CLGT The Center for Local Government Technology is a public service outreach program of the College of Engineering, Architecture and Technology. CLGT is committed to providing the highest quality educational programs, training, technical assistance and customized services to various customer groups who specialize in serving the public, such as county officers and employees, municipal officers and employees, state agencies and professional associations.
Wed, 10 May 2017 11:24:06 -0500
Health Leaders Gather to Improve Health Access in Rural Oklahoma
Government officials, tribal leaders, health care administrators, physicians, and educators will convene to explore ways to improve healthcare delivery and access in rural Oklahoma. Oklahoma currently ranks 46th in the nation in overall health according to the United Health Foundation. Oklahoma’s poor health status can be attributed to the shortage of primary care physicians and to the maldistribution of specialists who prefer to practice medicine in urban areas. Accessing health care is particularly challenging for Oklahomans living in rural and tribal communities. Many small towns do not have a primary care physician much less a specialist physician. OSU Center for Health Sciences has launched Project ECHO, an innovative care model, to bring specialty medicine to rural areas of the state. “We are examining the efficiency of the traditional model of healthcare delivery where the patient travels to the doctor’s office. Some rural Oklahomans may not have the time, money or car to travel to see a specialist in Tulsa or Oklahoma City. Project ECHO lets us flip the model and bring the care to the patient,” says Kayse Shrum, D.O., president of OSU Center for Health Sciences. To address this problem of access to specialty care, Shrum has joined forces with President Pro Tempore Mike Schulz (R-Altus), Speaker Charles McCall (R-Atoka), Senator Kim David (R-Porter) and Representative Leslie Osborn (R-Mustang) to host the OSU-CHS Rural Health Leadership Summit at OSU Oklahoma City on April 12th. Leaders will discuss healthcare issues facing their rural and tribal communities and how innovative solutions such as Project ECHO can address these issues. "We're very excited about Project ECHO and how it can help improve health outcomes in rural Oklahoma. It’s is a great way to allow rural providers to gain access to specialty knowledge at OSU Center for Health Services,” says Dr. Johnny Stephens, chief operating officer at OSU Center for Health Sciences. Featured speakers, panelists and moderators for the event include: President Pro Tempore Mike Schulz, Oklahoma State Senate Speaker Charles McCall, Oklahoma State House of Representatives Senator Kim David, Chair, Senate Appropriations Committee Representative Leslie Osborn, Chair, House Appropriations and Budget Committee Secretary Chris Benge, Chief of Staff and Secretary of Native American Affairs Dr. Judy Goforth Parker, Administrator, Chickasaw Nation Division of Health Todd Hallmark, Executive Director of Health Operations, Choctaw Nation RADM Kevin Meeks, Acting Deputy Director of Field Operations, Indian Health Servic Dr. Doug Nolan, Medical Director, Cherokee Nation Diabetes Program Natalie Shirley, President, OSU-OKC, and Secretary of Education and Workforce Development Dr. Kayse Shrum, President, OSU Center for Health Sciences Dr. Johnny Stephens, Chief Operating Officer, OSU Center for Health Sciences Shawn Terry, Secretary of Health, Muscogee (Creek) Nation Dr. Jason Beaman, Director, OSU-CHS Psychiatry TeleECHO® Clinic Dr. Crystal David, Clinical Pharmacist, OSU Center for Health Sciences Dr. Joseph Johnson, Medical Director, OSU-CHS Project ECHO® Dr. Samuel Martin, Director, OSU-CHS Addiction Medicine TeleECHO® Clinic The event will take place at OSU-OKC. Due to the limited space the event is by invitation only. The conference will be streamed live beginning at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, April 12th at: For more information on the event contact: Dan Threlkeld Director of Media 918-200-2617
Wed, 10 May 2017 11:24:38 -0500
OSU hosts inaugural CADRE conference for advanced digital research
The CADRE conference April 11-12 will cover a variety of computational research tools including data visualization. OSU students work in the McCasland Foundation Data Visualization Studio in Edmon Low Library. The Coalition for Advancing Digital Research and Education (CADRE) will hold its inaugural conference at the Wes Watkins Center on the campus of Oklahoma State University April 11-12. Admission is free for all computational and data-driven researchers, aspiring researchers, faculty, students and staff in higher educational institutions throughout the region as well as K-12 educational facilitators. The conference is the product of an ongoing collaboration between the OSU High Performance Computing Center (HPCC), a division of the OSU Vice President for Research, and OSU Libraries’ Research Data Services to bring additional research computing resources and training to the OSU campus. This successful partnership inspired the formation of CADRE, a multidisciplinary, campus-wide initiative to build a comprehensive and collaborative environment for OSU’s computational and data-intensive researchers. “In the academic research environment, there is a growing reliance on advanced computing and digital resources, but researchers sometimes have difficulty locating these resources, if they even learn of them at all,” said Dr. Dana Brunson, OSU assistant vice president for research cyberinfrastructure and OSU HPCC director. “The CADRE conference provides a prime opportunity for researchers, librarians and cyberinfrastructure professionals to come together and discuss these resources, which can result in better, faster and more thorough research as well as produce new and exciting collaborations.” A networking reception and poster session is set for April 11, with the conference’s main activities on April 12 from 8 a.m.--4:30 p.m. at Wes Watkins Center. John Towns, executive director for science and technology at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA), will be the featured speaker on April 12. The plenary speaker, Kelly Gaither, serves as director of visualization at the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) at the University of Texas in Austin.  Other conference events include a series of afternoon breakout sessions from researchers and educational facilitators throughout the region. A breakout session for K-12 facilitators will include two of Oklahoma’s regional STEM alliances and the 2017 National Center for Women in Information Technology (NCWIT) Aspirations in Computing awards ceremony for the Oklahoma region, which recognizes high school girls with an interest in computing. The conference also features a vendor exposition to connect regional researchers with industry leaders and resource providers, including Intel, the conference’s Gold sponsor, which has a long history of contributing to community and open-source initiatives benefitting research computing. PHOTO:
Fri, 07 Apr 2017 09:37:58 -0500
OSU grad student awarded Fulbright to teach in Israel
Candace Square Candace Square, a graduate student at Oklahoma State University, has been awarded a Fulbright U.S. Student Award that will take her to Israel for the 2017-2018 academic year. The program places recent American graduates in schools around the world where they act as an ambassador for the United States, help improve foreign students’ English language abilities, and learn about the country’s people and culture. Square, a graduate of Broken Arrow High School, is scheduled to graduate from Oklahoma State University in May with a master’s degree in communication sciences and disorders. She received her bachelor’s degree in health and exercise sciences with a minor in psychology from the University of Oklahoma. “I am very grateful to be selected for a Fulbright award, and truly blessed to have the opportunity to teach English in Israel,” Square said. “I am committed to bridging the gap between American and Israeli cultures, and I certainly expect to gain many insights from this experience, which I will cherish and share throughout my life." Square, who will be teaching at a college in Tel Aviv, explains she was inspired to visit Israel early in life. “I grew up going to an event at my church called A Night to Honor Israel. The first time I attended, it sparked my curiosity, which grew into a fascination for Israeli culture and history. There’s no better way to learn more about the culture than to be immersed in the country.” The Fulbright U.S. Student Program is the country’s largest student exchange program, offering opportunities to students and young professionals for graduate study, advanced research, university teaching, and primary and secondary school teaching worldwide. Funded by an annual congressional appropriation to the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, the program was initiated by Senator J. William Fulbright in 1946 for the promotion of international goodwill through the exchange of students in the fields of education, culture and science.
Fri, 07 Apr 2017 09:25:38 -0500
OSU students win at National Trumpet Competition
Dr. Ryan Gardner is flanked by national contest award winners Natalie Upton and Noah Mennenga. The trio is joined by alumnus Nick Doutrich. For the fifth time in four years, Oklahoma State University has earned a first place award at the National Trumpet Competition, held recently in Denver, Colorado. OSU senior Natalie Upton, from Prosper, Texas, won first place in the solo undergraduate division at the contest, held on the campus of Metropolitan State University March 25-26. Sophomore Noah Mennenga, of Cottage Grove, Wis., took third place. OSU alumnus Nick Doutrich finished third in the large ensemble division with Southern Methodist University. With Upton’s win, OSU becomes the only university to win every collegiate category at the competition including undergraduate solo, graduate solo, small ensemble, and large ensemble divisions. Dr. Ryan Gardner, associate professor of trumpet, has been in charge of the trumpet studio and trumpet ensembles in the OSU Department of Music since 2011. PHOTOS:
Fri, 07 Apr 2017 09:22:18 -0500