February 2017


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"Stephen G. Nash" <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 27 Feb 2017 15:06:40 +0000
"Stephen G. Nash" <[log in to unmask]>
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List of Announcements (details below):

·         This Week at the Volgenau School

·         VSE in the News

·         Photo of the Week

·         Upcoming Events at the Volgenau School

·         Three-Minute Thesis Competition: Preliminary Rounds (Fri Mar 3)

·         Funding Opportunity:  Nano-Biosensing (NSF)

·         Funding Opportunity:  Disability and Rehabilitation Engineering (NSF)

·         Funding Opportunity:  Engineering of Biomedical Systems (NSF)

·         Funding Opportunity:  Distributed and Collaborative Intelligent Systems and Technology (Army)

·         Duminda Wijisekera Receives Funding from NCSU & Dept. of Defense

·         Lance Sherry & John Shortle Receive Funding from MITRE


This Week at the Volgenau School

Enrollments in the Volgenau School are about 7% higher in Spring 2017 than they were in Spring 2016.  There is growth at all levels - undergraduate, masters, & PhD.

This is good news.  Our programs are popular, and the enrollment growth allows us to expand our offerings and capabilities to match our long-term aspirations.

Our enrollments have been increasing at rates like this for years.  In Spring 2011 we had 4,194 students, and in Spring 2017 we have 6,519 students.  Based on preliminary admissions data for Fall 2017, they will continue to increase.

Growth like this has side effects.  When we bring in new students we need more faculty to teach them, more teaching assistants to support large classes, and more space for offices, classrooms, and labs.  Since teaching assistants are often doctoral students, increases in undergraduate enrollments have an impact on our graduate enrollments goals.

Until this year and the introduction of the new budget model, we had few tools to manage this growth.  The new budget model has given us additional resources, allowing us to hire 34 new faculty.  It has also made it possible to increase our stipends for teaching assistants and research assistants, which should enable us to recruit doctoral students more effectively.

In the short term our biggest challenge is space.  The university does not have a "space model" to match the new budget model.  That is, there is no direct connection between our enrollments and the space the university makes available to us.  This is starting to change, and we are starting to see new opportunities, but we are a long way from having the space that we need.

Longer term, a challenge will be doctoral enrollments.  Although doctoral enrollments are up this year, we have seen gradual declines in the last decade.  We will need to increase our doctoral enrollments to keep pace with our needs for teaching assistants and our ambitions for research.  Increasing our stipends for doctoral students is one part of this project.  We will be attacking this problem in many ways over the next few years, since it is critical to the future of our School.


VSE in the News

Here is a list of news stories about VSE that have been posted:

Beyond Mason

·         Washington Post: Mason's Long & Kimmy Nguyen Engineering Building is mentioned in report on 2000s building boom on Virginia college campuses<https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/magazine/you-may-not-recognize-your-old-college-campus/2017/02/21/d83d9304-e183-11e6-ba11-63c4b4fb5a63_story.html?utm_term=.41ebcb5d281d>.

·         Phys.Org<http://phys.org/>: Mason researchers are developing a tool that combines computer software and crowdsourcing to help intelligence analysts make better decisions in high-pressure situations.<https://phys.org/news/2017-02-intelligence-analysts-smart-decisions.html> This article was picked up from the Mason News article about the IARPA Co-Arg grant written by Michele McDonald.

·         Malaysian Digest: Mason's Duminda Wijesekera said humans can provide the best evidence for proving that the money from the sale of human vital organs end up in the hands of ISIS <http://www.malaysiandigest.com/frontpage/29-4-tile/659458-syrian-refugees-sell-their-organs-in-turkey-money-ends-up-in-the-hands-of-isis.html> .

·         Bozeman Daily Chronicle (Montana): Feature on Mason alum Anousheh Ansari, the first self-funded woman to visit the International Space Station and the first Muslim woman to travel to space.<http://www.bozemandailychronicle.com/news/montana_state_university/dreams-into-reality-entrepreneur-space-traveler-encourages-female-students-at/article_26e6debb-9555-5200-ac59-c535c387044c.html>

On the Mason News page (https://www2.gmu.edu/news)

·         Engineers Week 2017 highlights diversity.<file:///C:\Malaysian%20Digest\Ā Mason'sĀ Duminda%20Wijesekera%20said%20humans%20canĀ provide%20the%20best%20evidence%20for%20proving%20that%20the%20money%20from%20theĀ saleĀ of%20human%20vital%20organs%20end%20upĀ in%20the%20hands%20of%20ISIS> Includes a list of activities for the week. This article also ran in The George

On the Volgenau site (https://volgenau.gmu.edu/news/latest-news)

·         Driven to Serve: IST's Class Act<https://volgenau.gmu.edu/news/384701>. Volgenau School of Engineering Information Sciences & Technology (IST) students use capstone projects with local non-profits and promote the Mason tradition of service.

·         Promoting career readiness for Volgenau students<https://volgenau.gmu.edu/news/384981>. Sean McGowan and University Career Services coach students on how job search techniques and strategies.

·         Engineers Week 2017 highlights diversity.<https://volgenau.gmu.edu/news/385086> Wide variety of activities showcases trans-disciplinary work of engineers.

If you have suggestions for other stories, please submit them to Martha Bushong, [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>.


Photo of the Week


Volgenau students participated in the inaugural transportation race Wednesday afternoon as part of Engineers Week. Events wrap up on Friday at the Johnson Center Cinema with the screening of "Dream Big" and announcement of the winner of the week-long competition for the Engineers Week Cup.


Upcoming Events at the Volgenau School

Whether you're looking for a specific event or browsing, our calendar lets you know what's happening at Volgenau. Here is a sample of what's coming in the next several weeks. For more information visit our calendar<https://volgenau.gmu.edu/events#/?i=1> on the web. From this page you can share the event on social media, get updates, forward to friends, or save it to your own calendar.

March 1 - 5:30 p.m.                Celebrate Technology Reception and Basketball Game (more information)<https://content.gmu.edu/node/313606>
March 2 - 11:30 a.m.  BENG800 Seminars
                                                CEIE's SAME Chapter Meeting
March 21 - 3:30 p.m.  Graduate Student Coffee hosted by Bioengineering
March 28 - 7:30 p.m.  ASCE Student Mixer
March 30 - 11:30 a.m.            CEI Annual Meeting and Luncheon

For information on getting your event posted via 25Live, please visit scheduling.gmu.edu<http://scheduling.gmu.edu/>.


Three-Minute Thesis Competition: Preliminary Rounds (Fri Mar 3)

The preliminary rounds of the Three-Minute Thesis competition will be held on Friday, March 3, in the HUB Rooms 4 & 5.  There are 48 doctoral students entered, of whom 20 are from the Volgenau School of Engineering.  Below you can see when our students are competing.  I encourage you to drop by.  If you would like to see the complete schedule, let me know.

I would like to thank the faculty from VSE who volunteered to be judges in the competition:  John Shortle, Shanjiang Zhu, David Lattanzi, Edward Huang, Elise Miller-Hooks, Max Albanese, Jeffrey Leaf, Jessica Lin, Burak Tanyu, and Viviana Maggioni.

Round 1: 9-10:30 am
Murmuria, Rahul
Balint, John
Akhlagh, Nima
Vasileia Georgiou

Round 2: 10:30 am-noon
Tariverdi, Mersedeh
Connell, Warren
Snyder, Bradley
Rasheed, Nashaat

Round 3: noon-1:30 pm
Wang, Xing
Diehl, William
Yang, Zhuo
Bandara, K R Damindra

Round 4: 1:30-3 pm
Hughes, David
Abbaspour, Aiyoub
Ullah, Saad
Mbaziira Alex

Round 5: 3-4:30 pm
Asadabadi, Ali
Aram, Soroor
Venkatesaan Sridhar
Gebremariam Fitsum


Funding Opportunity:  Nano-Biosensing (NSF)

Sponsor:  Directorate for Engineering/NSF
Deadline Date:  20-Oct-2017
Program URL: https://www.nsf.gov/funding/pgm_summ.jsp?pims_id=505340&org=NSF&sel_org=NSF&from=fund

Synopsis:  The Nano-Biosensing program supports fundamental engineering research on devices and methods for measurement and quantification of biological analytes.


Funding Opportunity:  Disability and Rehabilitation Engineering (NSF)

Sponsor:  Directorate for Engineering/NSF
Deadline Date:  20-Oct-2017
Program URL: https://www.nsf.gov/funding/pgm_summ.jsp?pims_id=505335

Synopsis:  The Disability and Rehabilitation Engineering program supports fundamental engineering research that will improve the quality of life of persons with disabilities through: development of new technologies, devices, or software; advancement of knowledge regarding normal or pathological human motion; or understanding of injury mechanisms.


Funding Opportunity:  Engineering of Biomedical Systems (NSF)

Sponsor:  Directorate for Engineering/NSF
Deadline Date:  20-Oct-2017
Program URL: https://www.nsf.gov/funding/pgm_summ.jsp?pims_id=501023

Synopsis:  The goal of the Engineering of Biomedical Systems (EBMS) program is to provide research opportunities to develop novel ideas into discovery-level and transformative projects that integrate engineering and life sciences in solving biomedical problems that serve humanity in the long-term. EBMS projects must be at the interface of engineering and biomedical sciences and include objectives that advance both engineering and biomedical sciences. The projects should focus on high impact transformative methods and technologies. Projects should include: methods, models and enabling tools for understanding and controlling living systems; fundamental improvements in deriving information from cells, tissues, organs, and organ systems; or new approaches to the design of systems that include both living and non-living components for eventual medical use in the long-term.


Funding Opportunity:  Distributed and Collaborative Intelligent Systems and Technology (Army)

Opportunity Title:  Distributed and Collaborative Intelligent Systems and Technology (DCIST) Collaborative Research Alliance (CRA)
Sponsor:  Department of the Army
Sponsor Number:  W911NF-17-S-0004
Deadline Dates:  28-Apr-2017 [LOI/Pre-App], 14-Jul-2017
Program URL: https://www.grants.gov/custom/viewOppDetails.jsp?oppId=291951

Synopsis:  The United States Army Research Laboratory (ARL) has established an enterprise approach to intelligent systems that couples multi-disciplinary internal research, analysis, and operations with extramural research and collaborative ventures. The purpose of this Program Announcement (PA) is to solicit proposals to establish a new collaborative venture - The Distributed and Collaborative Intelligent Systems and Technology (DCIST) Collaborative Research Alliance (CRA) - that seeks to advance the theoretical foundations of intelligent systems science and help fulfill the research and development goals of the U.S. Department of the Army. The PA is expected to result in a single award to a Consortium of organizations, led by an institution of higher education, that may include institutions of higher education, industrial (large and small businesses) and non-profits entities.


Duminda Wijisekera Receives Funding from NCSU & Dept. of Defense

Duminda Wijisekera of the Center for Assured Research & Engineering received $85K from North Carolina State University and the Department of Defense for his project, "Global Impact of Conflict Economies Due to Evolving Clandestine Organ Trade."


Lance Sherry & John Shortle Receive Funding from MITRE

Lance Sherry & John Shortle of the Center for Air Transportation Systems Research and the Systems Engineering & Operations Research Department received $35K from the MITRE Corporation for their project, "Design of a sUAS Airworthiness Assessment Tool."


Stephen G. Nash
Senior Associate Dean
Volgenau School of Engineering
George Mason University
Nguyen Engineering Building, Room 2500
Mailstop 5C8
Fairfax, VA 22030

[log in to unmask]
Phone: (703) 993-1505
Fax: (703) 993-1633