In recognition of the exemplary accomplishments in research, scholarship, and creative activity by faculty members and graduate students at Illinois Institute of Technology, the Office of the Provost, the Office of Research, and the Illinois Tech Chapter of Sigma Xi sponsor the annual Sigma Xi/IIT Awards for Excellence in University Research. Sigma Xi is a scientific research society of nearly 75,000 scientists and engineers who have been elected to the society because of their research achievements or potential. Honors went to:
- Electrical engineering student Zhiyi Li, who has been involved with state-of-the-art research on optimization techniques applied to the modeling of large-scale infrastructure systems including electric power systems, transportation systems, and cyber-physical systems.
- Assistant Professor Kenneth M. Tichauer, head of a lab whose primary focus is the development of quantitative approaches of collecting and analyzing molecular imaging data for cancer applications. His team is also the finalist team in the Nayar Prize I for the ADEPT Cancer Imager project.
- Professor Philip R. Troyk, whose research work focuses on the design and deployment of neural prostheses—implantable electronic devices that interface with the nervous system and are intended to compensate for neural deficit or disease. He is currently the principal investigator on the funded project “The Intra-Cortical Visual Prosthesis (ICVP).”
Chen Li, a Ph.D. candidate in chemistry, was selected as a “CBSB2017 Outstanding Young Researcher” for the May 2017 workshop “From Computational Biophysics to Systems Biology (CBSB2017)” at the University of Cincinnati. Li spoke about a new method that predicts how the binding of small molecules affects a protein’s conformational equilibria.
Aislinn Davis (BIOL 3rd year) won an honorable mention for her poster presentation at the 2017 Chicago Area Undergraduate Research Symposium (CAURS). She worked with Jialing Xiang, professor of biology, whose research is focused on answering basic biological questions at the molecular level related to human diseases. Xiang’s areas of expertise include programmed cell death, signaling transduction, and cancer biology. One of the major projects involves proapoptotic and tumor suppressor Bax. Her team identified a unique Bax isoform, Bax delta 2, which may serve as a prognostic marker for cancer chemotherapy.
“Understanding the role and mechanism of Bax delta 2 in the cell could eventually help us understand how to make certain tumors more receptive to chemotherapy,” says Davis.
Jay Schieber, Armour College of Engineering professor of chemical engineering, director of the Center for Molecular Study of Soft Condensed Matter, and professor of physics, has been elected a Fellow of the Society of Rheology in recognition of his extensive scientific and technical contributions to rheology and service to the Society of Rheology. Rheology is a branch of physics that studies the deformation and flow of matter.
Computer Science Chair Presented a Featured Address at the 2017 IEEE International Conference on Data Engineering
Eunice Santos, Ron Hochsprung Endowed Chair, chair of the Department of Computer Science, and professor of computer science at Illinois Tech, gave the featured address during the first Women in Data Science and Engineering (WDSE) workshop at the 2017 IEEE International Conference on Data Engineering in April. She presented “Modeling and Analyzing Socio-Cultural and Dynamic Information in Social Networks” and discussed methods for mentoring and increasing the pipeline for women in computer science and data science.