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Biomedical Engineering Chair Receives Honorary Doctoral Degree from Aalborg University

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Audrey Grayson

Metin Akay, founding chair of the biomedical engineering department at the UH Cullen College of Engineering, received an honorary doctoral degree in biomedical engineering and science from Aalborg University in Denmark on Friday, April 17.

Akay’s degree was presented by the rector of Aalborg University, Michael Johansen, in front of an audience of about 500 invitees. The invited audience members included representatives from the Aalborg University Board and the Danish Ministry of Education. The event was followed by a reception for nearly 2,000 invited guests.

“Aalborg University is one of the most respected universities in the areas of neural and rehabilitation engineering, pain and bionanoscience,” Akay said. “I am excited and humbled to receive this honoris causa (honorary doctoral degree).”

Akay is a native of Turkey who earned his Ph.D. from Rutgers University in 1990. He served as the interim chair of bioengineering at ASU from 2006 to 2010, when he began his post at UH.

As researcher, Akay has conducted extensive work in the fields of neural engineering and genomics and health informatics. He is also one of the biomedical engineering community most active members and staunchest advocates. He has given more than 100 plenary, keynote and invited presentations at national and international conferences and served as an editor for several engineering books and journals.

As a leading figure in the biomedical engineering community, Akay has been handpicked to serve on boards charged with everything from raising public awareness of engineering to fostering international research partnerships. In 2012, Akay was named to the inaugural group of IEEE Brand Ambassadors, a program designed to communicate the importance of engineers and engineering to those outside of the profession and to promote IEEE within the engineering world. Additionally, Akay has received an invitation to join the International Academy of Medical and Biological Engineering, a member organization of the International Federation for Medical and Biological Engineering (IFMBE).

He’s also deeply committed to engineering education; over the years he has helped mentor several up-and-coming young researchers, many of whom have gone on to become highly regarded in their fields.

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