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Engineering Teaching Awards

April 19, 2011, Volume 57, No. 30

The recipients of the annual Penn Engineering teaching and advising awards are selected directly by SEAS students who said, after thoughtful consideration, “Penn Engineering is filled with gifted educators and we continue to be inspired by their dedication and excellence.”

The S. Reid Warren Jr. Award


Matthew Lazzara has been awarded the S. Reid Warren Jr. Award, which is presented annually by the undergraduate student body and the Engineering Alumni Society in recognition of outstanding service in stimulating and guiding the intellectual and professional development of undergraduate students. Dr. Lazzara is an assistant professor in the departments of chemical and biomolecular engineering and bioengineering. He obtained his PhD degree in chemical engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2003 and his undergraduate degree in chemical engineering from the University of Florida in 1997.

One student states, “Dr. Lazzara goes above and beyond his duties and is always willing to offer academic and career-related advice to students. Getting the chance to work with Dr. Lazzara has inspired me to apply to graduate school for chemical engineering.”





Ford Motor Company Award for Faculty Advising


Gershon Buchsbaum has been awarded the Ford Motor Company Award for Faculty Advising. The award recognizes dedication to helping students realize their educational, career and personal goals. Dr. Buchsbaum is a professor in the department of bioengineering and earned his PhD in engineering science in 1978, his master’s in electrical engineering in 1975 and his undergraduate degree in electrical engineering in 1974, all from Tel Aviv University in Tel Aviv, Israel.

One student notes, “Dr. Buchsbaum always has my best interests in mind even if it isn’t the usual path in Penn Engineering or if it requires more time on his part. He takes all of my lofty goals into serious consideration and does everything on his part to help me achieve them. I have always found him easy to contact and I never hesitate to ask him for help. I have bragged to my friends on numerous occasions about the support that Dr. Buchsbaum provides me.” Another student states, “Dr. Buchsbaum goes above and beyond what is required of a faculty advisor. He makes himself available at all times, is quick to respond to questions and concerns, resolves problems effectively and efficiently, and checks in with his students on a regular basis. He is very supportive in decision making processes and is always willing and eager to help to the best of his ability. He is more than deserving of this award.”




Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching in the Lecturer and Practice Professor Track


The Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching in the Lecturer and Practice Professor Track has been awarded to Michael Rizk, a lecturer in the department of bioengineering. The award recognizes outstanding teaching ability, dedication to innovative undergraduate instruction, and exemplary service to the School in consistently inspiring students in the engineering and scientific profession. Dr. Rizk earned his PhD in biomedical engineering from Duke University in 2008 and his undergraduate degree in electrical and computer engineering from the California Institute of Technology in 2003.

A student writes that, “Dr. Rizk exhibits a clear example of what I look for in a teacher. He is extremely available whenever students need help. He is extremely patient when answering questions inside and outside of class, he reinforces the concepts over details, and he has a positive attitude with everything. He absolutely deserves this award.” Another student writes, “Dr. Rizk has made a difference on my academic career in the way I approach engineering and scientific problems. Because of him, I have developed a passion to understand why I answer a problem in a certain way, whether it’s a research-based senior design objective or a coding problem in an academic class.”


Almanac - April 19, 2011, Volume 57, No. 30