March 09, 2009

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By Kathryn Kopchik

LEWISBURG, Pa. — Margot Vigeant, associate professor of chemical engineering at Bucknell University, has been named the 2009 recipient of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) Chemical Engineering Division Ray W. Fahien Award. She will receive the award at the ASEE Annual Meeting this summer in Austin.

The award honors Ray W. Fahien, the founding editor of the Chemical Engineering Education journal. It is given annually to an educator within 10 years of initial appointment who has shown evidence of vision and contribution to chemical engineering education. Selection is based on outstanding teaching effectiveness and educational scholarship.

"Professor Vigeant's teaching and pedagogical work truly stand out in their ability to reach beyond our discipline, our college, and even Bucknell, and those attributes certainly contributed to this ASEE award recognition, appropriately named in honor of a true pioneer in chemical engineering education," said Jeff Csernica, Bucknell professor of chemical engineering and department chair.

Teaching excellence award
Vigeant, who joined the faculty at Bucknell in 1999, is a graduate of Cornell University. She holds master's and doctoral degrees from the University of Virginia, where she received the Faculty Award for Excellence in Doctoral Studies in 1999. She is the recipient of the 2006-07 Presidential Award for Teaching Excellence at Bucknell.

Her citation read, in part, "She works tirelessly to broaden and improve the engineering curriculum and to build academic bridges between the College of Engineering and the College of Arts and Sciences by designing engineering courses that also reach out to non-engineering students. Students appreciate her ability to foster class interaction and praise her willingness to help and her enthusiasm."

Her teaching specialties are surface chemistry, separations, and engineering critical analysis, bioprocess engineering, thermodynamics, engineering and society, and first-year engineering.

Her research interests include the adhesion of bacteria to surfaces and its relationship to biofilm formation; applications of biofilm formation/prevention to environmental and health problems; and total internal reflection microscopy methods and their improvement and use on the study of cellular adhesion to surfaces.

Founded in 1893, the American Society for Engineering Education is a nonprofit organization of individuals and institutions committed to furthering education in engineering and engineering technology.

It accomplishes this mission by promoting excellence in instruction, research, public service, and practice; exercising worldwide leadership; fostering the technological education of society; and providing quality products and services to members.

Contact: Division of Communications


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