Siahmakoun Recognized as Endowed Faculty Innovation Chair

Monday, December 03, 2018
Azad Siahmakoun

As Endowed Chair for Innovation in Science, Engineering, and Mathematics Education distinguished professor Azad Siahmakoun will create opportunities for students to conduct cutting-edge work in nanotechnology and silicon photonics.

Award-winning physics and optical engineering professor Azad Siahmakoun has started a three-year term as the Endowed Chair for Innovation in Science, Engineering, and Mathematics Education, also known as the Innovation Chair, in recognition to his work as an outstanding teacher and academic scholar.

Holders of the faculty chair accomplish work recognized outside of Rose-Hulman as exemplary, and demonstrate professional activity in both national and international circles of scholarship. They receive annual stipends to continue to excel in their specialized areas, lead conversations with other educators in their fields and support research opportunities with undergraduate students, according to Anne Houtman, provost and vice president for academic affairs.

The Innovation Chair supports exemplary achievement in development of pioneering academic and educational concepts and practices. Established by a bequest in 2015, the chair recognizes Rose-Hulman educators for their role as leaders of innovative education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Siahmakoun specializes in optics, micro-electro-mechanical systems and nanotechnology. He is an International Society for Optical Engineering Fellow, a senior member of the Optical Society of America and a Senior Fellow in the U.S. Office of Naval Research. His educational and research/development activities have been supported by $6.4 million from federal and state agencies and industries. Several of his projects have produced patent-worthy innovations and he earned the Rose-Hulman Board of Trustees’ Outstanding Scholar Award in 1999.

Siahmakoun has supervised more than 100 undergraduate research projects and dozens of master’s student theses. As Innovation Chair, he will continue to create multiple opportunities in silicon photonics education, ranging from upper-level courses to directed research opportunities. This work will expand the experiences available to students at the cutting edge of nanoscale work.

He succeeds mathematics professor Yoshi Shibberu, who focused on exponential technologies and supported activities in the expanding field of big data.