University of Houston Cullen College of Engineering


Four Cullen Faculty Members Honored at UH Faculty Awards Dinner

Vemuri Balakotaiah, Excellence in Research and Scholarship Award
Vemuri Balakotaiah, Excellence in Research and Scholarship Award

Four faculty members of the University of Houston Cullen College of Engineering were honored last week at the university faculty awards presentation. Vemuri Balakotaiah, Karolos Grigoriadis, David Shattuck and Osman Ghazzaly were among 15 scholars honored at the event held April 22 at the UH Hilton Hotel.

Vemuri Balakotaiah
Excellence in Research and Scholarship Award

Balakotaiah, a John and Rebecca Moores Professor of Chemical Engineering, received the award for the professor rank. A UH chemical engineering graduate, he is a leading scholar in chemical reaction engineering and fluid dynamics.

Called "one of the best chemical engineers in his field" by one advocate of his nomination, Balakotaiah has published more than 100 research articles. He joined the UH faculty in 1983. Balakotaiah's research has applications in reactors used routinely in the chemical and petroleum industries.

"Professor Balakotaiah has carried out seminal research, publishing many research articles of impressive depth, and attacking problems with a mastery that few can match. He is certainly the best of the young generation in the country in the area of nonlinear reacting systems," said Michael Harold, UH Department of Chemical Engineering chair.

Karolos Grigoriadis
Excellence in Research and Scholarship Award

Grigoriadis, the Bill D. Cook Associate Professor in Mechanical Engineering, received the award for the associate professor rank. He developed innovative control design methodologies to solve control problems in complex engineering systems. His research has applications in engine control, space structure control and other aerospace and mechanical systems.

"Because of his application-oriented research, it is no wonder that he attracts significant research sponsorship from a variety of funding agencies such as NASA and Cummins Engine Company," said a colleague in support of Grigoriadis' nomination.

One of the most internationally recognized faculty members in the UH Department of Mechanical Engineering, Grigoriadis has received numerous awards for research and teaching. In addition to his research, he has guided six Ph.D. students and 13 master's students since joining the engineering college in 1994.

David Shattuck
El Paso Corporation Faculty Achievement Award

Though Shattuck is an associate computer and electrical engineering professor, he has spent much of the past 23 years teaching his engineering students to become better communicators. He feels that the most effective engineers must also have the skills to convey their talents to others.

Colleagues commend his dedication and respect for his students, challenging higher-level students, while simultaneously developing basic skills of all students.

"Dave spends a great deal of his valuable time engaged with his students and their course responsibilities," said Jeffery Williams, associate electrical engineering professor.

Shattuck said his goal is to help engineering students begin to think more like professional engineers.

"I believe we must teach students the fundamental concepts that underlie the current skills and technologies being used," he said.

Osman Ghazzaly
El Paso Corporation Faculty Achievement Award

Ghazzaly, a civil and environmental engineering professor for nearly four decades, is no stranger to awards. The student chapter of the University of Houston American Society of Civil Engineers has named him "Professor of the Year" 12 times since 1969. He also received the Cullen College of Engineering's top teaching award in 1978 and 1992, the Kittenger Award and the college's Career Teaching Award in 2000.

While awards are one mark of an outstanding professor, the remarks of past students speak volumes about the effectiveness of his teaching style. One former student wrote, "One of the remarkable aspects of Dr. Ghazzaly's teaching evaluations is that although he always receives the highest scores, he has the some of the highest performance standards for his students. While he does his best to teach the material, he also does his best to make sure you know it. "



Related News Stories

UH PROMES Going Places, Tackling Global Challenges

UH Cullen College of Engineering students visit Brazil as part of the PROMES learning abroad experience.

While many people dream of seeing the world one day, a group of UH Cullen College of Engineering students recently returned from Brazil as part of the first engineering faculty-led study abroad experience through the Program for Mastery in Engineering Studies (PROMES).