Engineering professors earn promotion, tenure

UGA ArchThe University of Georgia has announced the promotion of six faculty members in the College of Engineering.

Jenna Jambeck, Kyle Johnsen, Peter Kner, Ramaraja Ramasamy, Joachim Walther and Yajun Yan have been promoted to associate professor. Their promotions are effective July 1.

In addition, the university has approved tenure for the same six faculty members. They are among 59 faculty members across campus to earn tenure.

Jambeck conducts research and teaches environmental engineering with a focus on solid waste. Her work often interweaves social context and sciences with technical aspects. She has conducted numerous research projects including those related to contaminant fate and transport during waste beneficial use, chemical fate and biological processes within disposal systems, sustainable and innovative waste management practices, marine debris and plastic pollution.

Johnsen founded the Virtual Experiences Laboratory (VEL) in 2008. The VEL serves as the center of virtual reality research and education at UGA. Johnsen’s focus is enabling researchers and students to develop and study the next generation of virtual worlds, advanced user interfaces, and virtual reality applications.

Kner works on developing new techniques for improving the resolution of 3-D fluorescence imaging. He is interested in combining different super-resolution techniques with adaptive optics for obtaining sub-diffraction resolution throughout model organisms such as zebrafish.

Ramasamy studies fundamental electrochemical problems through nanoscale science and technology. His primary focus is electrochemical energy conversion but he also investigates biosensors and bio-nanomaterials. Ramasamy’s research is highly interdisciplinary and overlaps with material science, biochemistry, microbiology, biotechnology and analytical chemistry.

Walther is one of the leaders of the engineering education research CLUSTER (Collaborative Lounge for Understanding Society and Technology), a trans-disciplinary, collaborative group at the UGA that focuses on engineering education research. Walther and his colleagues use interpretive research methods to investigate diverse aspects of this exciting, young field and build on the results of this research to push the boundaries and transform engineering curricular and teaching practice in engineering programs.

Yan is director of the Biosynthetic Engineering and Biocatalysis Laboratory. His research focuses on developing enzymatic and microbial approaches for the production of pharmaceutically important compounds, fuels and renewable chemicals.

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