News

Engineering Professor Receives Minority Advancement Award

By: 

Krista Kuhl

Hamid Parsaei, professor and chair of industrial engineering with the University of Houston Cullen College of Engineering, recently received the UPS Award for Minority Advancement from the Institute of Industrial Engineers (IIE).

The award, which was presented at the group’s Annual Conference in May, is given “for innovative development of programs/products directed to the advancement of women, minorities or people with disabilities within the field of Industrial Engineering.”

Parsaei received the award largely for his efforts to recruit minority students to the Department of Industrial Engineering. “The IE faculty and staff have been actively involved in recruiting and retaining women and minority students,” he said. “I am very proud of the department’s efforts accomplishments in this area”

Among these efforts was the initiation of a college-wide plan to visit select international institutions to recruit highly qualified graduate students.

In addition, the department seeks to retain these recruits by hosting periodic meetings with students to receive feedback concerning the quality and variety of classes. It also partially subsidizes enrollment fees for organizations such as the student chapter of IIE, has doubled the number of graduate student assistantships, and has restructured the graduate and undergraduate curriculum.

These efforts have helped the Department of Industrial Engineering achieve one of the largest concentrations of minority students among IE departments nationwide—around 60%. Figures such as this have garnered recognition for the IE Department and Parsaei.

Parsaei was nominated for the award by Adedeji Badiru, professor and head of the Department of Industrial Engineering at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville.

In his nomination letter, Badiru said that Parsaei “has made tremendous contributions to the academic success, professional development and career advancement of underrepresented minority groups.”

Department: 

Related News Stories

Class of 2020 honored with virtual graduation celebration

Michelle Gale.

The fortitude of the Cullen College of Engineering's Class of 2020 was proudly celebrated by the university community on May 7, with a 90-minute virtual graduation celebration, featuring remarks from University of Houston leadership, a commencement speaker and most importantly, the graduating students.

Odo earns first place with 'rare event' paper

Chiwetalu Peter Odo, a senior Industrial Engineering undergraduate student, was the first-place winner in the IISE South Central Undergraduate Student Technical Paper Competition at Wichita State University in early March.

Odo's paper, “Rare Event Classification in Multivariate Time Series,” is about “rare events” in industry – trying to predict the events before they happen, and accentuating preventive actions that could be taken during early stages.

Students prove mettle via challenging capstone class

Instructional Associate Professor Randal Sitton (’85, M.S.I.E. ’88, Ph.D. ’92)

It happens in the spring of every academic year.

Teams of Cullen College industrial engineering students, most of them seniors about to graduate, are working to polish final details of the biggest assignment of their undergraduate years. This is their chance to demonstrate the theory and skills they have acquired since the day they walked into their first freshman-year engineering class.

Upcoming Events / Seminars