2023 Tandon Faculty Awards
At Tandon, we take the time each year to honor exemplary faculty members for their teaching skill, dedication to their students, and commitment to our school.
Excellence in Research Award
Elisa Riedo, a Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and affiliated Professor of Mechanical Engineering, is also a Professor of Physics at NYU’s College of Arts and Science. She is a 2023 recipient of the Excellence in Research Award, which is given annually to a senior faculty member or members in recognition of significant and sustained research accomplishments.
She has made major strides in what has long been considered the holy grail for orthopedic research: devising a method for not only creating artificial bone tissue that precisely matches the real thing, but does so in such microscopic detail that it includes tiny structures potentially important for stem cell differentiation, which is key to bone regeneration. She has also discovered a method of fabricating-state-of-the-art electronic circuits with atomically thin materials, and is collaborating with industry partners to prototype an electronic microchip that can be embedded in a watch or smart band to monitor a variety of human health threats. Her most recent papers report the results of her work with silicon carbide (SiC), an extremely hard material with many useful properties and applications; she has discovered that when a layer of graphene (a type of carbon) is grown on SiC, it can make the material even harder – as much as 100% harder at low pressures and up to 30% at high pressures – and that the yield point (at which it starts to deform) increases by up to 77%. In what was among the most exciting news of the past few months, she also uncovered a new fundamental law of physics that can lead to the design of two-dimensional materials in ways that reduce friction and minimize energy loss, potentially informing new breakthroughs in quantum computing, more efficient manufacturing processes, and greener vehicles.
Oded Nov — who chairs the Department of Technology Management and Innovation and is a faculty member of the Center for Urban Science and Progress — has also received a 2023 Excellence in Research Award.
His research interests include human-computer interaction, interactive technology and decision-making, digital health, computer-supported cooperative work, and citizen science, and he recently undertook a broad investigation into how to best bring inclusive tech into the clinic, empowering healthcare workers to take advantage of data-driven research and improve health outcomes for patients. Additionally, he has explored the use of AI-based chatbots to enhance patient-provider communication and has examined the intricacies of collaboration and cooperation among Wikipedia contributors using the framework of game theory. Another important recent accomplishment was the development of an AI-based system that can flag errors in the ordering process for prescription drugs, which are often caused or worsened by the intricacies of electronic health records. His innovation may not only reduce prescription-drug errors but also relieve pharmacists’ workloads and better ensure patient privacy and security.
Junior Faculty Research Award
Assistant Professor of Computer Science and Engineering Christopher Musco is the winner of this year’s Junior Faculty Research Award, presented annually to tenure-track members of the faculty to acknowledge their publications in top-tier venues, funded research proposals, student mentoring, and recognition by professional societies. Christopher is working to democratize big-data processing by developing new algorithms capable of efficiently processing the world’s largest datasets without the need for the world's largest supercomputers.
Distinguished Teacher Award
Associate Professor of Civil and Urban Engineering Semiha Ergan — who is also appointed to the Department of Computer Science and Engineering and serves as an associated faculty member at Center for Urban Science and Progress — has received the 2023 Distinguished Teacher Award, which is bestowed upon someone who has demonstrated sustained excellence in teaching over the past five years and which is considered the premier teaching award at NYU Tandon. The honor recognizes the consistently positive feedback she receives from those in her courses, her high instructor evaluations, the mentoring she enthusiastically provides to students at all levels, and her tireless efforts to improve every aspect of the Tandon experience.
Jacobs Excellence in Education Innovation Award
The 2023 Jacobs Excellence in Education Award, aimed at recognizing and fostering innovation and excellence in teaching, goes to Associate Professor of Computer Science and Engineering Rachel Greenstadt, in honor of her unwavering commitment to innovation in teaching and her development of inclusive and interactional strategies. Her research focuses on building more trustworthy intelligent systems that function both autonomously and with integrity, and her students learn to be independent thinkers with a solid grasp of ethical engineering.
Dean’s Award for Excellence in Online Education
Erin McLeish of the Department of Computer Science and Engineering is receiving the Dean's Award for Excellence in Online Education, given to instructors who have demonstrated excellence, through personal commitment to students and the development and delivery of innovative online education material. Erin’s students have high praise for her carefully selected lecture videos, and she is especially known for making complex topics easy to understand in an intuitive and fun way — a skill very much appreciated by everyone lucky enough to study with her.
Inclusive Excellence Award for Faculty
Ingrid Paredes, an Industry Assistant Professor in the General Engineering program, is the recipient of the Inclusive Excellence Award for Faculty. The award was established to honor a Tandon faculty member who demonstrates inclusive leadership and manifests the ideals of diversity, belonging, and equity through research and scholarship, creative work, teaching, mentoring, and service. She emphasizes the social and environmental implications of the topics she covers to her students — contextualization that is crucial in understanding the broader impact of their education, innovation, and future endeavors. Her passion for inclusion and justice is unparalleled, as evidenced by her contributions to the growth of inclusive understanding among General Engineering’s many teaching assistants and her pivotal involvement in the IDBE summer research program.
Andrea Silverman from our Department of Civil and Urban Engineering and Center for Urban Science and Progress has been elevated to the rank of Institute Associate Professor, in recognition of her significant accomplishments in research, teaching, and service, and the expectation that she will be a leader in her field. Andrea, who is also an NSF CAREER Award laureate, conducts research on the disinfection of waterborne pathogens, wastewater-based epidemiology, wastewater treatment, and urban flooding, in an effort to protect public health and environmental quality. She has been celebrated for her study of the degradation of bacteria, viruses, and antibiotic resistance genes in the environment when exposed to sunlight, and she is also well-known at Tandon for her work on FloodNet, an initiative that brings together communities, researchers, and New York City government agencies, to develop water-level sensors and collect data on the frequency, severity, and impacts of flooding in New York–important work in an era of increasingly devastating weather events.