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Recognizing Those Making a Difference in Engineering Education

IEEE Educational Activities Board honors 13 individuals, one section, and one society

5 min read
Photo of EAB award honorees.
Award recipients, front row from left: Enrique E. Alvarez, Guilhem De Valicourt, Timothy Hansen, Robert Metcalfe, Andrew Boggio-Dandry, Douglas Walled, and G. David Forney, Jr. Back row from left: Lorena Garcia, Linda D. Whipker, John Orr, Victoria Serrano, Walt Downing, Nathalie Gosset, Darrell Gooden, Douglas Askegard, Yoot Khuan Lee, Karen Panetta, and Witold Kinsner.
Photo: Nikki Cole from “Photography by Nikki Cole”

THE INSTITUTEEach year IEEE Educational Activities Board (EAB) Awards recognize and honor individuals, sections, and societies for major contributions in developing and delivering educational products and services to IEEE members, professionals, educators, and students. Their products and programs inspire understanding of IEEE’s fields of interest, support career preparation and professional enhancement, foster diversity, and ensure access to lifelong learning opportunities.

This year the EAB Awards Ceremony recognized 13 individuals, one section, and one society for their contributions to engineering education. Award recipients were honored for their accomplishments in the areas of preuniversity and university education, professional and continuing education, and accreditation.

The ceremony was held in conjunction with the IEEE Meeting Series at the Westin Boston Waterfront on 22 November. IEEE Eta Kappa Nu (IEEE-HKN), the IEEE honor society, bestowed awards to five of its members during the ceremony as well.

Witold Kinsner, vice president, IEEE Educational Activities, Lorena Garcia, EAB awards and recognition committee chair, and Karen Panetta, IEEE-HKN president, presented this year’s recipients with their awards.

José Moura, IEEE president and CEO, opened the ceremony by reflecting on the importance of recognizing those who have made educational contributions to the engineering profession as a way to continue the mission of IEEE and inspire the next generation.

“Tonight’s award ceremony truly reflects the global nature of IEEE,” Moura said. “We are thrilled to host such a diverse collection of award recipients and guests from across the broad spectrum of engineering disciplines to provide the opportunity to celebrate this multitude of leading-edge innovators.”


The Meritorious Achievement Award in Continuing Education was presented to Dr. Douglas Walled, an IEEE senior member, for “empowering the next generation of radiologists through his customized blended curriculum combining the practice of medicine with innovations in engineering.” Walled is an assistant clinical professor in Yale’s Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging. He also teaches medical residents at several hospitals in New York, including St. Peter’s in Albany and Staten Island University Hospital.

Senior Member Enrique E. Alvarez received the IEEE EAB Meritorious Achievement Award in Accreditation Activities for “his tireless leadership in accreditation activities in Latin America and his achievements in the admission of the Instituto de Calidad y Acreditación de Programas de Computación, Ingeniería y Tecnología (ICACIT) to the Washington Accord and the creation of the Lima Accord.” Currently, ICACIT is the only signatory member from Latin America to the Washington Accord, an international accreditation agreement among 20 countries for undergraduate professional engineering academic degrees. Because of the Lima Accord, graduates in Peru now receive degrees that are held to the same standards of the countries in the Washington Accord. So far, 48 programs in Latin America have been certified by ICACIT, expanding the reach of the accords to more than 13,000 engineering-program graduates.

The IEEE EAB Major Education Innovation Award was presented to Member Linda D. Whipker for “leadership in developing a unique approach to science, technology, engineering, the arts, and mathematics education and its significant impact to the community.” Whipker helped develop the Discover, Explore, Learn, Lead theory of informal learning and mentoring. D-ELL enumerates and describes identifiable learning modes that individuals move through when developing new skills and informs best practices for mentoring in each stage of the process. Whipker is president of the Forge Initiative, a nonprofit that runs a tech space in Cary, N.C.

Member Victoria Serrano received the IEEE EAB Meritorious Achievement Award in Outreach and Informal Education for “promoting outreach and informal education activities in universities, schools, public markets, churches, and state fairs in the United States and Panama.” Serrano is a full-time faculty member and researcher at the Universidad Tecnologica de Panama Chiriquí Regional Center, in Panama City. There she organizes and promotes IEEE activities including a celebration of Pi Day in March—which showcases engineering projects by preuniversity students at the state fair in Chiriquí. She also created CIATEC (the acronym for science, art, and technology in Spanish), a mobile center that allows children and teenagers to take robotics classes in different locations throughout the city.

Senior Members Yoot Khuan Lee and Nizar Rokbani shared the IEEE EAB Meritorious Achievement Award in Preuniversity Education. Lee was recognized for “the engagement of government, NGOs, the public, and preuniversity teachers and students to significantly increase the impact of the IEEE Teacher In-Service Program in Malaysia.” Rokbani received the recognition for “significantly increasing the impact of the IEEE Teacher In-Service Program in Tunisia through the Robotics and Democracy Program.”


The honor society recognized five individuals. Two who are also IEEE Medal of Honor recipients received IEEE-HKN Eminent Member recognition: Robert Metcalfe and Life Fellow G. David Forney Jr.

IEEE-HKN recognized Metcalfe “for leadership in the invention, standardization, and commercialization of Ethernet,” which he invented in 1973. His work resulted in the Xerox Star workstation, which brought technologies that allow for personal computers and, ultimately, an international computer industry standard, Ethernet, which is by far the most widely installed LAN.

Forney was recognized for “original contributions to coding, modulation, and data communication modems, and for industrial and research leadership in communications technology.” His work continued as he integrated the Viterbi algorithm as an optimum sequence decoder. In 1999 he began teaching at MIT, where he is currently an adjunct professor emeritus with the Laboratory for Information and Decision Systems.

The IEEE-HKN Distinguished Service Award was given to Life Fellow John Orr “for visionary leadership in developing IEEE-HKN’s strategic direction—which has become the foundation for the society’s financial stability, continuous growth, and programmatic excellence.” Orr was inducted into HKN in 1967 in the Alpha Chapter at the University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign. He served as president of IEEE-HKN in 2014. After the merger of HKN and IEEE, he developed a five-year business plan that set the foundation for how the organization would operate.

The IEEE-HKN C. Holmes MacDonald Outstanding Teaching Award was presented to Member Timothy M. Hansen for “exceptional engagement of undergraduate students in electrical and computer engineering through pedagogical innovations, classroom technologies, and curriculum development.” Hansen is an assistant professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at South Dakota State University, in Brookings.

Senior Member Guilhem de Valicourt received the IEEE-HKN Outstanding Young Professional Award for “outstanding contributions in the field of advanced photonic integrated circuits, specifically in the generation, amplification, and manipulation of high-speed optical signals.” De Valicourt is a principal integrated photonics engineer at IPG Photonics, in Oxford, Mass., where his research has focused on design, fabrication and testing advanced photonic integrated circuits for light generation, modulation, routing, and detection.


The IEEE Life Members Graduate Study Fellowship in Electrical Engineering was awarded to Member Arda Kaygan, who graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in electrical and electronics from Koç University in Istanbul. Kaygan is now pursuing a master’s degree in electrical engineering, signals, and systems at Delft University of Technology, in the Netherlands.

The Charles LeGeyt Fortescue Scholarship was awarded to Graduate Student Member Andrew Boggio-Dandry, who graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in computer engineering from the State University of New York at Albany, where he is now a first-year electrical and computer engineering graduate student and has been accepted to the Ph.D. program.


The IEEE EAB Section Professional Development Award was presented to the IEEE Buenaventura Section of central California for “the development of Aging Graciously with Technology and the Engineer-to-Entrepreneur workshops, supporting lifelong learning.” The section’s former chair, Senior Member Nathalie Gosset, accepted the award.

The IEEE Aerospace and Electronic Systems Society received the IEEE EAB Society/Council Professional Development Award for “offering inspiring and comprehensive educational programs and innovative professional development opportunities to the IEEE community.” Life Senior Member Walter Downing, the society’s president-elect, accepted the award.

Visit the Educational Activities website to learn more about the award recipients.

Nominations for the 2020 IEEE EAB awards open on 31 January. To learn more, visit the awards section of the website or contact EAB-Awards@ieee.org.

Angelique Parashis is the marketing manager for IEEE Educational Activities.

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