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ISR's busy November: NSF site visit, 25th anniversary dinner, SAC meeting


NSF Site Visit
ISR hosted a site visit by the National Science Foundation from Nov. 17–18. Prior to the event, ISR faculty and staff prepared a 36-page report covering the institute's scientific achievements and impact, influence as a model for academic research, strategic planning, industry collaboration and technology transfer, education program, infrastructure, and sustainability post ERC-graduation.

A team of reviewers were greeted by University of Maryland Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost Nariman Farvardin, and A. James Clark School of Engineering Dean Darryll Pines. They then heard the following presentations by ISR faculty and staff:

"ISR Overview" by ISR Director Reza Ghodssi
"ISR research and leadership from a systems research perspective: Past, present and future" by John Baras, ISR Founding Director (1985-1991)
"ISR education since ERC graduation" by Mark Austin, Director, MS Systems Engineering Program
"Building communities of researchers" by Gary W. Rubloff, ISR Director 1996–2001
"ISR External Relations since ERC graduation" by Jeffrey Coriale, ISR External Relations Director
"New Initiative: Maryland Robotics Center" by S.K. Gupta, Maryland Robotics Center Director
"New Initiative: Microsystems" by Elisabeth Smela, Department of Mechanical Engineering and ISR affiliate faculty member
"New Initiative: Green Communications" by Tony Ephremides, Institute for Systems Research and Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

The site visit team viewed a poster session by ISR faculty. Each faculty member's poster depicted their most important research during their time at ISR. The team also met privately with ISR joint-appointment faculty, department chairs and the dean before preparing a report covering their impressions of ISR's post-graduation trajectory, and their suggestions for ISR's future directions.

ISR 25th Anniversary Reception and Dinner
The NSF Site Visit was followed by a gala 25th anniversary dinner attended by well over 100 ISR faculty, university dignitaries, staff, the NSF team and the ISR Strategic Advisory Council. After dinner addresses included:
"ADVANCE" by Avis Cohen, Institute for Systems Research and Department of Biology
"Keynote talk: Flight and Targeting Characteristics of Echolocating Bats" by Cynthia Moss, Institute for Systems Research and Department of Psychology, followed by a panel discussion featuring Moss; P. S. Krishnaprasad, Institute for Systems Research and Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering; and Timothy Horiuchi, Institute for Systems Research and Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

Strategic Advisory Council Meeting
ISR's Strategic Advisory Council (SAC) met with ISR joint faculty and staff on the morning of Nov 19, giving their impressions of the information presented in the NSF Site Visit (at which they were guests). The SAC is made up of industry and academic representatives who convene on a regular basis to advise ISR on future directions. Specific advice for ISR was offered and discussed at this meeting.

Related Articles:
Lockheed Martin's Robert Mandelbaum joins ISR Strategic Advisory Council
Northrop Grumman's R. Eric Reinke joins ISR Strategic Advisory Council
ISR SAC member Vijay Srinivasan elected AAAS Fellow

December 14, 2010


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