Orange County Engineering Council Recognizes UC Irvine Engineering at Annual Awards Banquet

Engineering faculty, student and, alumni honored for engineering accomplishments and contributions

The Orange County Engineering Council (OCEC), a non-profit umbrella organization established in 1962 to promote and improve the image of engineers and scientists as professionals, while recognizing the work they accomplish locally and nationally, honored five UC Irvine alumni, one current engineering student, and one Henry Samueli School of Engineering faculty member, at their 2007 annual awards banquet.

Ayman S. Mosallam, a professor in residence in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department, was given the Distinguished Engineering Educator Award, and Jeremy Roth was named an Outstanding Engineering Student.  UC Irvine alumni Hazel Vilchez, Lawrence Esguerra, Dianne M. Kam and Roger Chung received the Young Engineer Award, and Nam Chiang was given the Outstanding Engineering Merit Award.  Another SamueliSchool faculty member and recognized nanotechnology pioneer, Professor H. Kumar Wickramasinghe, served as the event’s keynote speaker.

Mosallam is a also the director of the Structural Engineering Testing Hall, and his research focuses on structural and earthquake engineering, specifically polymer composites, reinforced concrete, large-scale testing and seismic repair and rehabilitation.  He is the faculty advisor for the UC Irvine student chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers, and serves as chairman of the International Committee on Composition Engineering.  He has published more than 200 technical papers, chapters and reports, and has been involved in several major research projects working with the development and verification of innovative seismic repair and rehabilitation systems for reinforced concrete, masonry, wood and steel structures.  He is the author of the ASCE official "Design Manual on Composition Joints," currently at press.

Wickramasinghe, the banquet’s keynote speaker, joined UC Irvine in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science in 2006.  Wickramasinghe, a member of the National Academy of Engineering, received his B.Sc. in 1970 and his Ph.D. in 1974 in electrical engineering from the University of London.  Prior to joining UC Irvine, Wickramasinghe managed nanoscience and technology research at IBM’s AlmadenResearchCenter in San Jose, Calif.  Holding 70 patents, some of his most significant inventions and contributions to the nano field include the development of the vibrating mode atomic force microscope, the magnetic force microscope, the electrostatic force microscope, the Kelvin probe force microscope, the scanning thermal microscope, and the apertureless near-field optical microscope. Most of these scanning probe microscopes are standard instruments used today for nano-scale characterization.

Jeremy Roth, a mechanical engineering and materials science and engineering undergraduate student, is a member of Pi Tau Sigma Mechanical Engineering Honor Society, Golden Key International Honour Society and the UC Irvine mountain bike team.  He has been involved in research on solid oxide fuel cell electrolyte materials under the guidance of Professor Martha Mecartney through the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program, as well as The Henry Samueli School of Engineering undergraduate research fellowship.  Roth also completed research with Professor Albert Yee in patterning 2-D graphenenanowire carbon electronics via nano imprint lithography as part of the Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship in Information Technology.  MatSci, the materials science society at UC Irvine, was co-founded and is chaired by Roth, and has grown to almost 70 members after its founding in 2006.  The society sponsors a high school outreach program for materials science, as well as a micrograph of the quarter competition sponsored by Carl ZeissSMT.

Hazel Vilchez, '01, who holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and an M.B.A., was highlighted for her work at the Boeing Company in Long Beach.  She is a member of the C-17 Globemaster III Support Equipment Integrated Equipment Management team, which is responsible for ensuring that the United States Air Force has the proper support equipment dispersed worldwide for the C-17 aircraft.  She also maintains the Support Equipment Management System, which she developed, and will receive her M.S. degree in mechanical engineering this August while pursuing a third master’s degree in system engineering.

Lawrence Esguerra, '04, was recognized for his work on the Tetra Tech, Inc. design team, with responsibilities including preliminary design, final design, and construction phase engineering services for many high-profile projects.  Esguerra is also involved in Tetra Tech’s career fair activities, and the recruitment of interns and entry-level engineers.  Esguerra earned his B.Sc. degree in civil engineering, and was an active member of the student chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers during his time at UC Irvine.

Boeing Company Systems Engineer, Dianne M. Kam, '04, began her career at Boeing as part of the Integrated Simulation and Test Team for the Future Combat Systems Program, and is now a design and analysis engineer for the Air Force’s B-1 Bomber program.  The B-1 Bomber program is undertaking significant avionics systems upgrades to bring the technology of the aircraft into the 21st century.  Kam graduated from UC Irvine with dual B.Sc. degrees in mechanical and aerospace engineering, and is a member of the OrangeCounty chapter of the Society of Women Engineers.

Senior Project Engineer, Roger Chung, '99, of VA Consulting, Inc.’s Orange County Division, has seven years of experience in the field of water resources, and recently prepared the hydraulic modeling of the flood control conveyances integrated into the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic Golf Course.  He also prepared and processed a Conditional Letter of Map Revision application with the Federal Emergency Management Agency for removal of floodplain areas situated in the back basin of Lake Elsinore.  He is actively involved with the ASCE Orange County Branch Hydrology and Hydraulics Technical Group, and volunteers his time assisting students in the senior design project class at UC Irvine.  Chung earned a bachelor’s degree in civil and environmental engineering.

Nam Chiang, '85, M.S. '86, an aerospace engineer at the Boeing Company, has made significant contributions in the area of formation flying, in which he has led a team in the militarization of Terminal Collision Avoidance System technology.  In a previous position at McDonnell Douglas, Chiang worked with the C-17 flight controls and flight management systems, specifically on systems such as stall warning, navigation and formation flying.  Chiang earned a bachelor’s and master’s degree in electrical engineering at UC Irvine.

In addition to assisting the science and engineering industries, the OCEC also supports science and engineering education, including the Orange County Science and Engineering Fair at the junior and senior high school levels, the Future Scientists and Engineers of America after-school program, and the Mathematics, Engineering and Science Achievement (MESA) program.  The Council also hosts a Leader’s Night for networking among the presidents and CEO’s of technical societies, science engineering, and scientific corporations in OrangeCounty.

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