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Faculty and Staff

NC State Announces 2021-22 Goodnight Early Career Innovators

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NC State announced its 2021-22 class of Goodnight Early Career Innovators today. This program recognizes and rewards promising NC State early-career faculty whose scholarship is in STEM or STEM education. The 25 faculty selected will receive $22,000 ­for each of the next three years to support their scholarship and research endeavors.

“We are incredibly grateful to the Goodnights for their support of our outstanding faculty,” said Chancellor Randy Woodson. “We are committed to recruiting and retaining the top STEM minds in the country, and the Goodnight Early Career Innovators program goes a long way in accomplishing that goal.”

Faculty members eligible for the award must be tenure-track assistant professors at the time of nomination and their scholarship must clearly and substantively contribute to innovations and advancement in STEM or STEM education. Nominees were evaluated based on evidence of early productivity in research and innovation, which may include a strong early record of scholarly publication or dissemination appropriate to their discipline, external funding or recognition as an early career leader in their field.

Nominees were recommended by their colleges and selected by a committee of distinguished faculty from across the STEM disciplines at NC State. Thirty-nine faculty members were nominated for the award.

“Being named a Goodnight Early Career Innovator gives our faculty members the flexibility to pursue new and advance existing research in a variety of ways,” said Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Warwick Arden. “The Goodnights’ gift takes our faculty expertise and gives it extra mileage to impact STEM disciplines and the university community in an incredibly positive way.”

This year’s class of Goodnight Early Career Innovators includes:

  • Aydin Aysu, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering
  • Yevgeny Brudno, assistant professor of biomedical engineering 
  • Wei-chen Chang, assistant professor of chemistry 
  • Karen Chen, assistant professor of industrial and systems engineering 
  • Glenn Cruse, assistant professor molecular biomedical sciences 
  • Kevin Garcia, assistant professor of crop and soil sciences 
  • Landon Grace, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering 
  • Margaret Gruen, assistant professor of clinical sciences 
  • Ali Hajbabaie, assistant professor of civil, construction and environmental engineering
  • Lilian Hsiao, assistant professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering 
  • Ethan Hyland, assistant professor of marine, earth and atmospheric sciences 
  • Shiyan Jiang, assistant professor of teacher education and learning sciences 
  • Arion Kennedy, assistant professor of molecular and structural biochemistry 
  • Albert Keung, assistant professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering 
  • Zakiya Leggett, assistant professor of forestry and environmental resources
  • Gustavo Machado, assistant professor of population health and pathobiology 
  • Kelly Ann Meiklejohn, assistant professor of population health and pathobiology
  • Santosh Mishra, assistant professor of molecular biomedical science 
  • Rajan Parajuli, assistant professor of forestry and environmental resources 
  • William Sagues, assistant professor of biological and agricultural engineering 
  • Mahmoud Sharara, assistant professor of biological and agricultural engineering 
  • Eunkyoung Shim, assistant professor of textile engineering, chemistry and science
  • Katharina Stapelmann, assistant professor of nuclear engineering 
  • Xiaoqiu Wang, assistant professor of animal science 
  • Tianfu Wu, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering

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