Engineering Professors Invited to NAE’s 2020 U.S. Frontiers of Engineering Symposium

February 19, 2021

Professors Cheung and McDowell selected to discuss issues of U.S. sustainability and innovation

The National Academy of Engineering has selected Georgia Tech’s Lily Cheung, assistant professor in the School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, and Matthew McDowell, assistant professor in the George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering and the School of Materials Science and Engineering, to attend the 2020 U.S. Frontiers of Engineering Symposium. The goal of the symposium is to encourage cross-disciplinary discussion by bringing together exceptional engineers from industry, universities and federal labs into conversation about U.S. innovation and sustainability.

faculty image of McDowell

Matthew McDowell, ME and MSE

faculty image of Cheung

Lily Cheung, ChBE

The event will be held virtually from February 25-26, 2021. The hand-selected group of 100 early-career engineers will focus on four main topics during the two-and-a-half-day period: Food for Thought: The AgRevolution Shaping What We (Will) Eat; Next-generation Energy Systems Integration; Engineering Innovation in Women’s Health; Plastics: Pollution Challenges and Innovations.

“I am quite thankful to have been selected to attend, and I am really excited about interacting with and learning from engineers from across the nation who are at the cutting edge of a number of important fields,” said McDowell, a first-time invitee.

Cheung is not only a returning symposium attendee but was also invited to co-chair the session “Food For Thought,” which will discuss the pressing challenge of food growth. According to a United Nations statistic, the world will need to produce 50% more food by the middle of the century to account for population growth rates, changing diets and the harmful effects of climate change on current agricultural practices. Cheung will apply her research to this pressing social and environmental issue at the event.

“Leading a session for the symposium meeting is an honor,” said Cheung. “The meeting's goal is to bring together young engineers to learn and discuss society's biggest challenges, and how we grow our food is one such challenge. Having the opportunity now to share a little of my field with other attendees is very exciting.”

The sponsors for the 2020 U.S. Frontiers of Engineering Symposium are The Grainger Foundation, National Science Foundation, Air Force Office of Science and Research, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering, Microsoft Research, Cummins and Amazon.

To learn more about the National Academy of Engineering, visit their website here.

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