Sriram Honored as Outstanding Engineer of the Year
The Maryland Science Center has named Clark School Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering (ChBE) assistant professor Ganesh Sriram its 2011 Maryland Outstanding Young Engineer. He was nominated for the honor by Fischell Department of Bioengineering professor and Chair William Bentley, the last member of the Clark School faculty to receive the award in 1998 during his appointment in ChBE.
The Maryland Outstanding Young Engineer (OYE) Award, established in 1988, is sponsored by the Maryland Academy of Sciences. According to the Science Center's web site, the award, given in the name of the museum's past Chairman of the Board and planetarium founder Allan C. Davis, was created "to encourage the important work of young scientists and engineers residing in the State of Maryland and increase public awareness of their accomplishments." Sriram will be presented with the award's Allan C. Davis medal and a $2500 cash prize at a reception May 26.
Sriram, who received his Ph.D. in chemical engineering from Iowa State University in 2004, specializes in metabolic engineering and systems biology. His research program includes projects on metabolic flux analysis, gene regulatory network analysis, biofuels, and new approaches to treating human diseases including malaria and diabetes.
Since joining ChBE in 2008, Sriram and his students have won several high-profile grants and awards. In 2010, he was the co-PI on two projects funded by National Science Foundation (NSF) grants: one, for $3.2 million, will support an effort to turn poplar trees into a viable biofuel crop, while the other, for $1.9 million, will allow the university to acquire a superconducting 800 MHz Nuclear Magnetic Resonance spectrometer for the study of complex problems in biology and medicine. Three undergraduate students who conduct their research in Sriram's Metabolic Engineering Laboratory have recently won university and national awards: Emily Lin won a 2009 American Society of Plant Biologists Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship and a 2010 University of Maryland Undergraduate Researcher of the Year award for her work on carbon traffic; Matt Conway won a 2011 Howard Hughes Medical Institute Undergraduate Research Fellowship for his proposed study of metabolic flux analysis in yeast cells; and Ho-Man Yeung received a 2011 University of Maryland Library Award for Undergraduate Research for his efficient and effective use of information resources while studying mass fragmentation patterns of the sugars for metabolic flux analysis.
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May 16, 2011