Award Winner Recognition

Award of Distinction

Huy Tran

Ms. Huy Tran, Director of Aeronautics at NASA Ames Research Center (ARC), manages research and technology development, field testing of airspace traffic management and operations, autonomous systems, systems analysis, vertical flight, and aeroacoustic and computational fluid dynamics. Her research areas include subsonic rotary wing, fixed wing aircraft, entry descent and landing for Mars and earth spacecraft, and vehicle systems analysis capabilities.  She ensures safe operations of the Unitary Wind Tunnel, the world's largest wind tunnel and the Vertical Motion Simulator.  As the Technical Manager for Aerospace Programs at ARC, she manages an over $400 million per year portfolio across 6 NASA centers performing research in a variety of areas including high-end computing, advanced networking and communications, intelligent systems, foundational research in information systems, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and data mining of complex systems.  She was lead inventor of the Phenolic Impregnated Carbon Ablator , the primary heat shield for the Stardust Sample Return Capsule, Mars Science Laboratory, Space-X Dragon cargo and crew Dragon capsules, and the Mars 2020 that carried the Ingenuity Helicopter, which made the first vertical flights on Mars.

The Newnan Brothers Award for Faculty Excellence

Yasser Dessouky, ISE

Dr. Yasser Dessouky has extensive research and consulting experience in developing models to analyze improvements in the design and efficiency of systems and workflow patterns.  He has gained recognition in the areas of modeling and analysis of systems/processes. Dr. Dessouky has more than 45 publications and grants in excess of $1M in these research areas. He also serves as an editor-in-chief of Computers and Industrial Engineering. His professional practice includes work with organizations such as Applied Materials, Texas Instruments, General Electric, Ford Motor Company, United Parcel Service, and Desert Samaritan Hospital to name a few. He is grateful that San Jose State University has allowed him to pursue his passion and dream of being a teacher-scholar, and he can still remember the feeling of belonging in his first lecture in 1997. The diversity in the room was uplifting! Prior to joining the faculty at San José State University, Dr. Dessouky served on the faculty at Miami University, Ohio. He earned his doctorate and master’s degrees in industrial and management systems engineering from Arizona State University and a bachelor’s in industrial engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is also a proud parent of 24-year-old triplets who all finished college in four years and are working adults.

Dean's Service Award

Monica Serna, Academic Advisor, Engineering Student Success Center

I started out in the College of Engineering as a front desk student assistant in the Computer Engineering department in 2015. I really enjoyed working with the students, faculty, and staff. I especially liked helping the students with questions and helping them file their paperwork for graduation. I came to know all the “ins-and-outs” of the department. So, after I graduated, I eagerly applied for the undergraduate advisor position for the CMPE Department and, thankfully, joined the CMPE team in the Spring of 2019. Most recently I have joined the fantastic ESSC family. I’ve experienced a lot of changes and astounding times these last few years, but I have been so grateful to be a part of our students’ academic journey. Seeing each of our students accomplish their goals and helping them reach them is very rewarding. I continue to strive to be a constant support in their ever-changing lives and a place to go when they need guidance. I’m looking forward to supporting our students for many more years to come.

Faculty Award for Excellence in Teaching

Maria Chierichetti, Aerospace

Maria Chierichetti joined the department of Aerospace Engineering at San Jose State University as a full-time assistant professor in Fall 2019. She was attracted to SJSU by the balance between teaching and research of its diverse engineering faculty, and by SJSU commitment to student success. Since joining SJSU, Dr. Chierichetti has been involved in several activities that promote student success: she has implemented novel pedagogies in her classes, such as specification grading and mastery learning, she coaches students by implementing active learning strategies in her classes, and she mentors engineering faculty to improve their teaching. As the pandemic started, she has investigated how students’ learning and experience have been affected. She is very interested in investigating the safety of transportation systems, both on the ground and in the airspace. She is currently a research associate for the Mineta Transportation Institute. Before joining SJSU, she worked as a faculty member at Worcester Polytechnic Institute and at the University of Cincinnati. She earned her PhD in aerospace engineering at Georgia Tech in 2012, as well as BS and MS degrees from Politecnico di Milano (Italy) in 2004 and 2007 respectively. She is an Amelia Earhart Fellow – Zonta International Foundation.

Faculty Award for Excellence in Scholarship

Anand Ramasubramanian, Chemical and Materials

Anand Ramasubramanian is a Professor of Chemical Engineering. He received his MS in Chemical Engineering from Indian Institute of Science, and his PhD in Bioengineering from Rice University in Houston, Texas. He served as Assistant and Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering at The University of Texas at San Antonio. He moved from Texas to California to live and prosper in the SF Bay Area. At SJSU, he can often be seen in his comfortable chair, pretending to think about platelet mechanobiology, or chatting with his students and neighbors.

Faculty Award for Excellence in Service

Anil Kumar, Industrial and Systems Engineering

I joined SJSU in 2015 and have had a wonderful time thus far. The location was the main draw for joining SJSU. Outside of college, I like spending time with my family, exploring the outdoors, learning about new cultures, trying new things (especially food!), and cooking. A fun fact about me is that I can find humor in any situation.

Award for Outstanding Lecturer

Michael Oye, Chemical and Materials     

It was back in 1999 when I gained my first engineering experience as an undergraduate student hired through SJSU Foundation on an NSF GOALI grant (for an internship at IBM Almaden). I lived on campus in Hoover Hall (which was recently replaced with SRAC), and as such I have always had a special affinity for SJSU for the past quarter century.

I’ve been teaching Engineering courses at SJSU since 2009 and have been incorporating CommUniverCity projects in each semester since 2012. I believe that CommUniverCity projects not only benefit the local community, but also SJSU faculty and students as well because they can get involved with real-world projects that have farther reaching impacts than just what happens in the classroom.

I enjoy meeting with other fellow SJSU Spartans from other colleges because it’s great to hear about different perspectives on things that impact our lives. I find everyone to be passionate about what they are doing and it’s a great way to continually renew our sense of purpose.

About a few years ago, I completed an MBA from Berkeley by spending 4 years taking courses on the weekends. So on any given week, I could be giving an exam at SJSU, while also taking one at Berkeley! This gave me an interesting perspective on what it’s like to be a student, and the expectations students have on faculty.

Staff Award for Excellence in Service

Lydie Rashel, Mechanical Engineering

I always wanted to work in a scholarly environment. In fact, I initially wanted to be a teacher of comparative literature.  Among other things, I especially love traveling and gourmet cooking with my husband. I also love reading and spending quality time with my family and friends.

I am a Second Degree Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do and a Kirigami in Shinkendo. Surprising fact: I never thought that I would meet my soulmate at SJSU.

I am committed to living a healthy lifestyle which includes fitness activities and eating healthy every day. I am blessed to have a husband who inspires me by leading the way by example. I am also passionate about learning foreign languages which I get to practice every day. This makes SJSU a fun place for work.

The Scott T. Axline Memorial Student Award for Excellence in Service

Kathy Tong, Chemical Engineering

I chose SJSU because after high school I did not feel ready to leave the Bay Area quite yet and felt that there was still opportunities for me to grow as an individual within this campus. I also still wanted to still be close and care for my loved ones. I love to go hiking around the San Jose area, spend my free time playing games and watching shows. As of last year, I started glass painting which has been incredibly fun to do when I have the spare time. I am a food GPS whenever it comes to Asian cuisine as I am an avid foodie for at least the Bay Area.

I am incredibly interested in sustainability since I chose this major in hopes of giving back in some form as I enter my professional career. It was through this interest that I chose to minor in Environmental Studies with an emphasis in Water Resource and Management along with taking up an undergraduate research role for an Aerosol Chemistry Lab for 4 years.

Eloisa Kaye Difuntorum, Electrical Engineering

Growing up in the Philippines, I was inspired to pursue Electrical Engineering to devote my time to the advancement of electronics, so I can give back to the same technology that enabled me to connect with my family located thousands of miles away. San José State University is at the heart of Silicon Valley, and with its diverse population of students and with endless opportunities to get involved with the community, I knew that it was the school for me. Outside of academics, I enjoy running and playing basketball with my friends on the SJSU Intramural Team. I also enjoy reading about self-development and trying out new café spots around Downtown San Jose. One of my goals in life is to become a polyglot, which is someone that is fluent in four or more languages. Para sa ngayon, yo entiendo algo de español y un peu français et 조금 한국어. If you ever see me on campus, feel free to wave and I'll most likely wave back. Thank you for reading!

The Donald Beall Student Award for Engineering Accomplishment

Kimberly Martinez, Industrial and Systems

After completing my undergraduate degree, I was left with a passionate motivation to learn more about how humans make decisions and problem solve under pressure. I wanted to pursue an in-depth hands-on learning experience, that’s when I came across SJSU and the M.S. HF/E program. I knew SJSU would grant me the challenging opportunities I needed to help me develop in both industry and research environments. 

My current fixation and area of interest is in understanding and improving human-machine interactions during semi-autonomous driving. Specifically, I’m researching the effects of tactile displays during semi-autonomous driving to develop a deeper understanding of how tactile displays can utilize a variety of in-vehicle locations.  It also helps me comprehend patterns to convey more meaningful feedback information necessary to understanding how structured tactile patterns can intuitively and reliably transmit more complex information. the location or the status of surrounding vehicles or certain vehicle maneuvering commands, to support the driver during the takeover. 

In my free time you can find me reading a book, watching sci-fi (probably Star Trek), or out on a hike. Most people probably don’t know how much of a sci-fi fan I am, let alone a Star Trek fan, and may find that surprising.