Indrajit Charit, Associate Professor, Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering
Dr. Charit is an Associate Professor with the Department
of Chemical and Materials Engineering. He serves both the
Materials Science & Engineering and Nuclear Engineering
Programs. He joined the University of Idaho in 2007 after
a postdoctoral stint at the North Carolina State University,
Raleigh. He earned his doctoral degree in Metallurgical
Engineering from the University of Missouri-Rolla in 2004.
Since joining the University of Idaho, he has secured
more than $1.8 million research/equipment funding from external funding
agencies including the Department of Energy. His research emphasis has
been on the development of correlations linking processing-microstructuremechanical
properties in the field of nuclear and other energy materials. He
so far graduated two Ph.D. students and five M.S. students. He is the author
or co-author of 40 journal papers, 32 proceeding papers, and 1 textbook.
His scholarly work has been cited over 1000 times. He has organized 4
international symposia and has 54 oral presentations made in various
conferences. He currently serves as the vice-chair of the Nuclear Materials
Committee of the TMS. He is a licensed professional engineer in the State of
Outstanding Young Faculty
Michael Lowry, Assistant Professor, Department of
Dr. Lowry joined the Department of Civil Engineering in
2009. He is an affiliate faculty member of the Bioregional
Planning Program and affiliate researcher for the National
Institute for Advanced Transportation Technology. His
research focuses on capital investment decision-making
and transportation planning for bicyclists and pedestrians.
Through his research he has developed various GIS
tools that engineers and planners can use to assess
transportation opportunities for non-motorized travel. Dr. Lowry teaches
courses related to transportation planning, statistics, and economic analysis.
He received his Ph.D. in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the
University of Washington and B.S. and M.S. from Brigham Young University.
He is a board member of Regional Public Transportation Incorporated,
which operates SMART Transit in Moscow, Idaho. He is a member of the
National Research Council Committee on Transportation Programming and
Investment Decision-Making. Dr. Lowry is a licensed Professional Engineer
and certified Professional Transportation Planner.
Outstanding Staff Awards
Angel Shears, Student Services Coordinator, Engineering Outreach
Angel Shears is the Student Services Coordinator for the
Engineering Outreach (EO) program. She has worked at
the University of Idaho for 13 years this past March. While
working she obtained a Bachelor’s degree from Lewis Clark
State College in Social Sciences with a minor in Political
Science. At EO she works with faculty campus wide and other EO staff
members to distribute course materials to students at a distance via the
on-line platform. Her favorite part of the job is the many different people she
works with on a daily basis. In her spare time she enjoys reading, camping,
geocaching, quilting and watching her two boys play sports.
Jeff Kimberling, Broadcast Engineer, Engineering Outreach
Jeff first graduated from the University of Idaho in 1985,
obtaining a degree in communications with an emphasis
in broadcasting. Jeff had several part time jobs on campus
while attending school, including a couple of semesters
working evenings at Engineering Outreach. Back in those days
evenings were spent dubbing videotapes of classes.
Fully expecting to leave the area with his new bachelor’s degree in
communication, Jeff instead found employment at the UI, working various
place such as KUID-TV, UI Media Services, and finally supervising event
technical support at the Student Union. This evolved into more than 25 years
of employment at the University of Idaho and a chance to earn a Master’s
degree in Education Administration in 2000.
After spending a year working at the Art Institute of Seattle in 2006, Jeff found
himself back at the UI and in 2009 found himself, once again, Engineering
Outreach this time as a Broadcast Engineer. By then, the technology had
changed quite a bit since the 1980’s and the operation had expanded
noticeably. In his spare time Jeff enjoys bicycling and fishing and spending time
Molly Steiner, Department Manager, Mechanical Engineering
Molly Steiner graduated from the UI with a BFA in Studio
Art/Graphic Design in 2002. She began working for
Mechanical Engineering in February 2003, and had worked
for two years previous as part-time IH/work study in the
Electrical and Computer Engineering department. Molly
lives in Troy with her husband, Curt, and her two kids,
Abby (5) and Michael (22 mo). She used to enjoy knitting, cooking and
baking, these days it’s more Barbie’s, Legos and chicken nuggets!
Outstanding Graduate Student
Andrew T. Weakley, Chemical Engineering
Andrew (Andy) T. Weakley received his B.S. and M.S. in
Chemical Engineering from the University of Idaho in
2009 and 2011, respectively. Presently, Andy is a Chemical
and Materials Engineering Ph.D. candidate in professor D.
Eric Aston’s group and collaborates extensively with the
department of Plant, Soil, and Entomological Sciences.
Current research includes suppressing heteroscedasticity
using nonlinear transformations for the rapid prediction of glucosinolates
as well as applying a novel wavelength elimination routine in tandem with
PLS modeling to determine filter-adsorbed, α-quartz in mine dusts using
near- and mid-infrared spectrometry, respectively. Interest areas include
developing novel preprocessing algorithms to the background correction
of vibrational spectra, optimizing predictor-wavelength selection in
partial least-squares (PLS) regressions, and measuring the impact of
prediction uncertainty on model selection in multivariate calibrations.
Andy has authored or coauthored 7 peer-reviewed publications to date
with an additional manuscript currently under review in Analytical and
Outstanding Publication by a Student
Dumidu Wijayasekara is a graduate student at the
University of Idaho in Idaho Falls currently reading for
his Ph.D. in Computer Science. He received his B.Sc. in
Computer Science from The University of Peradeniya,
Sri Lanka in 2009. He is currently working as a research
assistant at the University of Idaho. His fields of interest
include fuzzy non-linear systems, data mining, machine
learning, pattern recognition, and immersive visualization techniques.
Outstanding Senior Awards
Sharon Strom, Biological and Agricultural Engineering
Sharon Strom is scheduled to graduate in Biological and
Agricultural Engineering in the Environmental Engineering
option. She enjoys traveling and painting, as well as
practicing yoga and is currently looking for her first job as
an environmental engineer in training. After graduation
Sharon and her fiancé will be getting married in Spokane
before heading off to Maui for the honeymoon. Eventually
she hopes to be able to work in international engineering, specifically in
the areas of water treatment and soil remediation.
Levi Dawes, Biological and Agricultural Engineering
Levi Dawes grew up in Princeton, Idaho. He will be
graduating with a bachelor’s of science in Biological and
Agricultural Engineering under the Eco-Hydrological
Engineering option. His hobbies include hunting, fishing
and snowboarding. Currently Levi works for the University
of Idaho’s EcoHydrology Lab and Wildlife Habitat Nursery
during the school year, while also working for Northwest
Management Inc. during the summer. After graduation he plans to get
a job working in the field of Hydrological Engineering, preferably to do
restoration projects for salmon and steelhead.
Ben Carleton, Chemical Engineering
Ben Carleton is a long-time resident of Idaho, raised
in Coeur d’Alene. Ben moved to Moscow with his wife
to finish his bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering
(B.S.Ch.E.). Ben specializes in water and wastewater
treatment, he works three internships and is an
undergraduate researcher in an environmental laboratory.
Ben plans to go on to obtain his Master of Science degree in
Chemical Engineering (M.S.Ch.E.) after graduation. He would like to work
on developing techniques for synthesizing bio-plastic from organic waste.
Bryant Charlo, Civil Engineering
Bryant Charlo graduated from Lewiston Senior High
School in 2010 and came to the University of Idaho to
peruse a degree in civil engineering. He was drawn to
civil engineering because of the wide range of knowledge
required in any one project and to challenge himself
throughout his career. After graduation in May 2014,
he plans on working in the area of Water Resource
Engineering for a consulting firm in the Northwest.
Mitch Bodmer, Computer Engineering
Mitch Bodmer is a senior computer engineering student
at the University of Idaho with interests in digital systems
and embedded design. During his time at the university
he has worked with the Vandal Atmospheric Science Team
as the Command and Data Handling Team Lead for 3
years, as well as contributing to two small satellites at
NASA Ames. After graduation Mitch plans to go to work
for Microsoft in the operating systems group in Redmond, Washington.
Ryan Sacksteder, Computer Science
Ryan Sacksteder is from a small town in Northern Idaho,
and will graduate this spring with bachelor’s degrees in
Computer Science and Mathematics. In his spare time,
Ryan enjoys playing a variety of sports such as ultimate
frisbee, basketball, and football. Ryan is also part of Cru,
a campus ministry here at the University of Idaho. Postgraduation,
Ryan will be working for Chief Architect (a 3D
home design software company) in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.
Jacob Grinestaff, Electrical Engineering
Jacob Grinestaff has studied Electrical and Computer
Engineering at the University of Idaho for four years,
emphasizing in Microelectronic Fabrication and Design.
He and his wife Hannah will move to Boise where he will
begin work at Micron in mid-June in their DRAM Product
Engineering Department. He loves biking, skiing, and
anything to do with the outdoors and is excited to pursue
these activities alongside his professional development after graduation.
Kathryn Nii, Industrial Technology
Kathryn Nii began her college career in 2009 and will
graduate with a degree in Industrial Technology with
an emphasis on Human Safety Performance. After
graduation she plans on spending more time with
her family and furthering her career with the Quality
Assurance Department at Idaho National Laboratory.
Quinn MacPherson, Materials Science Engineering
Quinn MacPherson is from Deary, Idaho and will graduate
from the University of Idaho with a dual major in Applied
Physics and Materials Science and Engineering. He plans
to enter the Physics Ph.D. program at Stanford University
in the fall of 2014. Quinn wants to thank the faculty,
staff, and fellow students of the Chemical and Materials
Engineering Department and the Physics Department for
their support and educational opportunities.
Stephen Goodwin, Mechanical Engineering
Stephen Goodwin is a mechanical engineering senior from
Hayden, ID. In the past four years he has been involved
in a number of activities at the University of Idaho such
as the ASME Club, Vandal Atmospheric Science Team,
and Microbaja Compition. In addition, he has served
as a mentor in multiple lower division courses and
the mechanical engineering machine shop. Outside of
academic affairs, he enjoys hiking, playing ultimate frisbee, and relaxing
with friends. After graduation, Stephen plans on attending graduate
school in the northwest to pursue studies in robotics and controls.
Nadine Morasci, Mechanical Engineering
Nadine Morasci grew up in Coeur d’ Alene, Idaho and
has enjoyed working towards a degree in Mechanical
Engineering where she has developed an interest in
manufacturing. Outside of classes, she has been involved
with UI’s ASME Chapter and has played piano for UI
Jazz Band III and the Horace Silver Jazz Combo. She has
also volunteered as a judge for FIRST and FLL Robotics
tournaments and as a Site Manager for the Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival
for the past four years. Nadine has interned with GE Aviation in Yakima,
Washington for the past two summers and will continue to work for
GE in various locations across the country as a part of the Operations
Management Leadership Program after graduation.