Clark School Alumni e-Newsletter

Meet Catherine Stewart, Your Engineering Alumni Chapter Board President

Catherin Stewart '03 Hello, fellow Alumni! My name is Catherine Stewart, and I am the new president of the Engineering Alumni Chapter Board. My job, and the board’s, is to help you to strengthen your ties to the Clark School, and thus help the Clark School continue its rapid advancement in engineering education, research, and entrepreneurship.

I graduated from the Clark School in 2003 with a B.S. in mechanical engineering, and was involved with the Solar Decathlon and Pi Tau Sigma (the Mechanical Engineering Honor Society) among many other activities. Now I'm pursuing a Master's degree in engineering and public policy from UM while working full-time at Constellation Energy. Together with Josey Simpson, our new director of alumni relations, I will show you how you can help our current students succeed, lead prospective students to apply, and contribute to the Great Expectations campaign in a way that makes sense for you. Let’s do our part for the school that has done so much for us! Go Terps!

Classes of '58 and '68, It's Not Too Late to Reunite With Us October 23!

The Clark School and the University of Maryland welcome the classes of 1958 and 1968 to campus for a reunion celebration on October 23rd at 6 p.m. At the reception, you and your guests can reminisce about your student years and learn about the school’s exciting future. Tour the state-of-the-art Kim Engineering Building and enjoy hors d’oeuvres in the company of your friends. Please RSVP by sending email to Josey Simpson or call 301-405-2150 as soon as possible if you would like to attend.

Young Alumni, Join Us to Celebrate Homecoming, October 24

Kick off Homecoming 2008 with a special event just for young alumni from 8-10:30 p.m. on October 24 at the Riggs Alumni Center. Enjoy all the benefits of a professional networking event, but in a fun, no pressure social setting. Then reminisce with old friends and make new ones over drink specials and heavy hors d'oeuvres. $5 for Alumni Association members; $10 for non-members. RSVP online.

Meet the Hybrid Power System Inventor at Innovation Hall of Fame Induction, October 30

Alex J. Severinsky, inventor of the Hyperdrive power-amplified internal combustion engine power train used in the Toyota Prius and other hybrid vehicles, is the 2008 inductee into the Clark School's Innovation Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony will be held at 4:30 p.m. on October 30 in the Kim Building. The ceremony will be followed immediately by the White Symposium on Innovation (see below).

"Intellectual Property: How Well Does the System Protect the Individual Innovator?" October 30

The 2008 Charles and Helen White Symposium on Engineering Innovation will be held on October 30 at 5 p.m. in the Kim Engineering Building Lecture Hall, immediately following the induction of this year's Clark School Innovation Hall of Fame nominee. The focus of this year's symposium is on protecting the intellectual property rights of inventors. All are welcome to attend and the event will also be webcast live for the first time ever.

Stephen Ruffa '82 Closes Out Fall Whiting-Turner Lecture Series, November 6

Stephen Ruffa (B.S. '82, aerospace engineering) is the author of Going Lean, and will discuss lean dynamics in manufacturing during his lecture on November 6 at 5 p.m. in the Kim Building Lecture Hall. For more information on Ruffa, the lecture series or past speakers, please visit the lecture series web site.

Microscale Pumps, Turbines to be Reality

A team of researchers at the Clark School, led by Associate Professor Reza Ghodssi and funded by the U.S. Army Research Laboratory and U.S. Army Research Office, has recently succeeded in manufacturing micromachines—tiny pumps, motors, and turbines that, integrated in a microscale liquid-fuel power generation system, will significantly reduce a soldier’s battery load. The engineers' advances also hold promise in technologies for health care (micropumps for implantable medical devices) and first responders (bio-chemical sensors).

Professional Sustainable Energy Engineering Degree a U.S. First

The Clark School has developed a new Master of Engineering program that will meet the emerging market demand for sustainable energy engineers and be accessible in its entirety online. The new Master of Engineering in Sustainable Energy Engineering was developed by faculty in mechanical, nuclear, reliability, chemical & biomolecular, and systems engineering. It is offered on-campus and online through the Office of Advanced Engineering Education.

Great Expectations: Clark School Update

The campus is celebrating reaching the halfway point of the Great Expectations campaign on October 23 with a milestone event at the Reckord Armory from 5 to 8 p.m. For more information, contact Tina Murphy, 301-405-4638. To learn more about the Great Expectations campaign and how you can make a difference in the Clark School’s progress, please contact Stu Stabley.

Creative Ways to Give

Want to directly assist student programs with your gift? Visit the Clark School's new Creative Ways to Give web site for ideas like this one: Give the Gift of Learning – Send two child-focused, child-sized, manually powered laptops from the “One Laptop Per Child” project to young children in the developing world. One will be delivered by Engineers Without Borders to Burkina Faso and the other will be sent to a child in Afghanistan, Cambodia or Rwanda. Investment: $400 for 2 computers. For more ideas and details, please contact Darleen Lugenbuhl.

Clark School Alumni SpotlightImproving the College Park Campus

Knight HallJ. Vinton Schafer & Sons, Inc. President Ronald E. Knowles (B.S. '70, civil engineering) and Project Manager Edward "Wayne" Gutermuth, Jr. (B.S. '98, civil engineering), are back on campus building Knight Hall (pictured), the new home for the Merrill College of Journalism, in addition to renovating Tawes Hall next door. The company, which is the sixth largest construction firm in the Baltimore area, is also in the planning phase of work for other potential projects on campus.

Blast from the Past: Help Us Uncover Clark School History

Mystery PhotoDo you recognize anyone in this photo? Send any information you have to Missy Corley. Help us identify the people pictured and we will send you a Clark School decal for your car! Thank you to James Pickett (B.S. '95, mechanical engineering) who wrote to say he recognized Julie Perez (B.S. '96, aerospace engineering; front row, far left) in last month's photo.

Join TerpNation!

TerpNation is a new social and career tool brought to you by the Maryland Alumni Association that replaces the Terp Alumni Network. Connect online with friends (and friends-of-friends-of-friends) based on shared interests, common acquaintances, professions, locations and more. TerpNation is free and exclusive to Maryland graduates (former Terp Alumni Network members will need to re-register with TerpNation). Register now and watch your Terp connections grow!

Help Us Tell Prospective Female Students About the Clark School

In an effort to interest more women in entering the field of engineering, the Clark School has created a new section of its web site, called The Women’s Community, to feature our excellent female faculty, staff, alums and students. Thanks to Carol Caldwell (B.S. '81, fire protection engineering) for replying last month (see also her alumni note in the next section). If you’re an alumna, please contact Missy Corley about adding your name and career highlights to the site. Your example may inspire a young woman to explore engineering.

Update Your Personal Information

Stay in touch with the Clark School by making sure we know how to reach you with announcements, news and more. Visit the Alumni Association web site to update your preferred contact information or contact Josey Simpson.

Your Name Here—Sponsorship Opportunities

Thanks to new Corporate Partner LGS Innovations for sponsoring this month’s edition of the Clark School's e-newsletter. There are many chances throughout the year to put your name and support behind the activities of the Clark School. Sponsorship opportunities include not only this e-newsletter but also alumni receptions and student projects! Contact Stu Stabley to learn how you can make a difference!

Find Work with Our Corporate Partners

Are you looking for a job? The Clark School's Corporate Partners are always looking to fill positions with experienced engineers! Below are direct links to their recruiting web sites:

Alumni Notes

Each month, we randomly select a name from the Alumni Notes featured in this e-newsletter to win a Clark School t-shirt! This month’s winner is Curtis Taylor! Don’t miss your chance to win the next t-shirt – send us your news today by emailing Josey Simpson!

Naba Barkakati (Ph.D. '83, electrical engineering) has a new book out—Linux All-In-One Desk Reference for Dummies—his 26th book on computers. Barkakati is a senior-level technologist with the U.S. Government Accountability Office.

Carol Caldwell (B.S. '81, fire protection engineering) lives in Christchurch, New Zealand with her husband, Charley Fleischmann (B.S. '85, civil engineering and fire protection engineering). Caldwell now runs her own business after having worked for Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories and Sandia National Laboratories. For more information on Fleischmann, please see the Fall 2008 issue (PDF, p. 19) of E@M Magazine.

John Chino (M.S. '73, mechanical engineering) has been named vice president of programs, quality and engineering at Clark School Corporate Partner Northrop Grumman.

Tim Cole (B.S. '85, mechanical engineering), a manager with Clark School Corporate Partner ATK Space, led a team of engineers who developed 45 new tools for the upcoming STS-125 Hubble Servicing Mission 4. He and Russ Stein (below) both wrote to tell us that their team consists of more than 20 Clark School alumni.

Pete Distler (M.S. '84, electrical engineering) is president of Smarter Agent, LLC.

John Fines (B.S. '95, electrical engineering) will have his Master's thesis, "Machine Tool Positioning Error Compensation Using Artificial Neural Networks," published in Engineering Applications of Artificial Intelligence.

Derrick Frost (B.S. '93, electrical engineering) has launched, an interactive program guide to internet video. Frost is founder and CEO of the company.

Vivek Khuller (M.S. '93, electrical engineering) is president and CEO of DiVitas Networks, a provider of mobile communications.

Barry Lake (B.S. '83, mechanical engineering) is president of Rollins-PCI Construction of Mt. Airy, Md.

Charles Polinger (B.S. '67, mechanical engineering) has been recognized for his service as past director of the U.S. General Services Administration's heating, refrigeration and steam distribution program.

Kevin Schoonover (B.S. '06, aerospace engineering) is a preliminary design project engineer with Clark School Corporate Partner ATK.

Stephen J. Stafford (B.S. '03, electrical engineering) is engaged to UM alumna Amanda Beth Harrison (B.S. '03, transportation and logistics, and marketing).

Russ Stein (B.S. '01, mechanical engineering) is a mechanical engineer with Clark School Corporate Partner ATK, where he works with Tim Cole (see above) and 20 other Clark School alumni ranging from the classes of 1970 to 2008.

Curtis Taylor (B.S. '98, mechanical engineering) is an assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at the University of Florida.

Shih-Huang Tung (Ph.D. '07, chemical engineering) is an assistant professor in the Institute for Polymer Science and Engineering at National Taiwan University.

Todd M. Wallenstein (B.S. '00, biological resources engineering) received his M.S. in mechanical engineering from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, and is a project engineer for K2M in Leesburg, Va.

Fateh N. Wattar (Ph.D. '82, civil engineering), of Hill International, a construction risk management company, has been promoted to vice president of operations for Northern Emirates, UAE.

The Clark School Mourns the Passing of…

Over the past month, we learned of the deaths of Arthur R. Denues (Ph.D. '39, chemical engineering) and Sukij Yongpiyakul (B.S. '88, electrical engineering; and a former UM employee).

Tell Us Your News

Clark School Alumni, we produce this e-newsletter so we can tell you about the school, but also so you can tell your fellow alumni about yourselves. Send us news about your recent career moves and personal events and we will include them in upcoming issues. Please send your news to

Feel Free to Forward!

We encourage you to forward this message to friends and colleagues! If you do not normally receive this e-newsletter and would like to sign-up for it, please send email to

This e-mail was approved for distribution by Josefina P. Simpson '84,
director of alumni relations.

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Alumni Calendar

Clark School News

Operations Academy Wins Education Award

O'Connor Honored for Lab Tour

Davis Awarded NSF Fellowship

Petrov Wins Atanasoff Award

New Series Emphasizes Engineering Education

UM Hosts New Robot Speedway Oct. 4

Sustainable Energy Degree a U.S. First

Student Named Chair of a VT Advisory Board

Greenhorne & O'Mara Pilots Intern Program

Commerce Dept. Taps Abshire for Committee

TRX Systems Finalist in Security Challenge

Microscale Pumps, Turbines to be Reality

Desai Awarded $1.27M NIH Grant

Renewal of Funding for Ghosh, Battery Research

Breger Takes Diabetes Technology Bronze

Shihab Shamma Named to NIH Study Section

Honor for Hybrid Power System Inventor

UM a Leader in Black Ph.D.'s

Hinman Alum Recognized by BusinessWeek

Media Coverage

Innovations Digest features Prof. Gilmer Blankenship's course on autonomous robots.

Hagerstown Herald-Mail features alumna in article on homeschooling.

Prof. Sean Humbert comments on pterodactyl-inspired aircraft design for Discovery News.

Small Times covers Prof. Reza Ghodssi's work on microscale turbines.

The Washington Post interviews alumnus Hugh Grunden (B.S. '82, civil engineering) regarding his successes with Easton (Md.) Utilities.

Reporters from WUSA 9 and NBC 4 in Washington, D.C., try out the Glenn L. Martin Wind Tunnel's hurricane-force winds.

PCWorld covers the University of Maryland WiMax Lab, run by ECE affiliate professor Ashok Agrawala.

Departmental & Institute News

Aerospace Engineering


Biological Resources Engineering

Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Electrical and Computer Engineering

Fire Protection Engineering

Materials Science Engineering

Mechanical Engineering

Maryland Technology Enterprise Institute

Institute for Physical Science and Technology

Institute for Research in Electronics and Applied Physics

Institute for Systems Research

Maryland NanoCenter

Center for Advanced Transportation Technology

Project Management Graduate Program

Office of Advanced Engineering Education

Master's Program in Telecommunications

Women in Engineering