Awards and Honors


President Charles M. Vest has been named a fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, an honor accorded to only about 2 percent of the organization's members. ASME officials and others surprised him with the honor at a November 23 presentation in his office. In attendance were Mark Freas, chairman of the Boston section of ASME; Arthur Bergles, the past president of AMSE who made the presentation; two members of MIT's mechanical engineering faculty, Professor Emeritus Steven H. Crandall and Professor Nam Suh, department head; and Professor Edward M. Greitzer, associate department head of aeronautics and astronautics.

The citation for Dr. Vest, a 35-year member of ASME, noted that he is "an eminent mechanical engineer and president of MIT [who] has been a leader in engineering and science education��������������������������� Prior to his present position, he did outstanding research in the thermal sciences and in the engineering applications of lasers and coherent optics. His book Holographic Interferometry is known worldwide."

Professor Thomas Kochan of the Sloan School has received a 1998 Cushing-Gavin Award, which honors the excellence of those in the field of labor-management relations who "exemplify moral integrity, n professional competence and community concern." Professor Kochan, an expert in human resource management and employee relations, examines public policy for employment relations and the US employment relations system. He was elected president of the International Industrial Relations Association in 1992 and was appointed to the Clinton administration's Commission on the Future of Worker/Management Relations in 1993.

Professor Emeritus and Senior Lecturer Fernando Jose Corbat������������������ of electrical engineering and computer science has received a 1998 Computers & Communications (C&C) Prize from the Foundation for C&C Promotion, a nonprofit group established by NEC Corp. The prize, which includes a medal and a cash award of 10 million yen (approximately $82,000), was presented "for pioneering contributions to the establishment of the basic concepts of modern operating systems through the development of the seminal general purpose time-sharing systems: CTSS and Multics."

Professor Corbat������������������ received the PhD in physics at MIT's Computation Center. In 1963, he helped establish the research group, Project MAC (now known as the Laboratory for Computer Science), part of a national program in information processing funded by the Department of Defense.

Philip S. Khoury, dean of the School of Humanities and Social Science and professor of history, delivered the Presidential address, "Lessons from the Eastern Shore," at the annual meeting of the Middle East Studies Association of North America (MESA) on December 4 in Chicago. Professor Khoury is the 33rd president of MESA, which is the largest learned society in the world devoted to the study of the Middle East, with a membership of 3,000.

Ali A. Argon, the Quentin Berg Professor of Mechanical Engineering, has won the Nadai Medal from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers "for seminal contributions to the fundamental understanding of the thermal mechanical properties of a broad class of materials." His work has advanced understanding of mechanisms of deformation and fracture and toughening in polymers, polymer composites, glasses and ceramics, and mechanisms of brittle-to-ductile fracture behavior. Professor Argon (SM 1953, ScD) has been on the MIT faculty since 1960.

Professor of Biology Arnold L. Demain was awarded the G.J. Mendel Honorary Medal for Merit in the Biological Sciences by the Czech Academy of Sciences in Prague. He was also made an honorary member of the Czechoslovak Microbiological Society at its 70th annual meeting, where he gave the opening plenary lecture.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on November 18, 1998.


Topics: Awards, honors and fellowships

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