Celebrating Mac Eng recipients of 2021 Graduate Student Recognition Awards – Faculty of Engineering

Celebrating Mac Eng recipients of 2021 Graduate Student Recognition Awards

Five McMaster Engineering community members have been recognized for their excellence, leadership, and success.

The Iron Ring statue outside John Hodgins Engineering Building

Five McMaster Engineering community members have been recognized as part of the 2021 Graduate Student Recognition Awards for their excellence, leadership, and success.

A full list of award winners and Kudos Boards to leave messages of congratulations and thanks as part of a virtual toast is available on the School of Graduate Studies website.  

The President’s Award for Excellence in Graduate Supervision

The President’s Award recognizes the outstanding contributions of supervisors to the graduate experience. 

Jamal Deen

Jamal Deen, Distinguished University Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering

 “It is a humbling experience to be recognized with this award. It is also a recognition of the numerous exceptional and talented students that I was fortunate to guide, coach, advise and supervise. They have made my job as a professor, the only job I ever wanted, a most rewarding and fulfilling experience, and for which I am so grateful. It continues to be a joy and inspiration to collaborate and work with graduate students.”

Sumit Majumder – now graduated with his PhD and working as a faculty member in a top Bangladeshi university says – Deen goes above and beyond for his students.

“Dr. Deen is among the few professors who is a coach, mentor and role model, all rolled in one person. His open-door policy and accessibility, constructive and timely feedback in a polite and respectful manner are qualities that we, his students, really treasure. As a guide, Dr. Deen mentors his students to excel not only as researchers, but also as moral and ethical human beings.”

Keith Leppmann Teaching Assistant Excellence Award 

Two engineering students were among teaching assistants honoured for their impact and contributions to undergraduate education at McMaster University. The award recognizes their commitment to teaching, reliability, enthusiasm, personality, adaptability, and communication skills. 

Gaoyin He portrait

Gaoyin He: Intermediate Laboratory Skills (CHEMENG 3L02) 

“I am very happy and proud to have been selected for the Keith Leppmann Teaching Assistance Excellence Award for the 2020-2021 academic year, McMaster University. Thank you for the patience, kindness, and support of my students. In my teaching, I encouraged students’ curiosity and their passion for their experiments through open and clear communication. I believe curiosity and dialogue in the classroom allow students to think critically and develop a strong ability for the challenges.”

He was also nominated for the Dean’s Award for Outstanding Leadership and Contributions to the International Graduate Student Community.

Ahmed Teamah portrait

Ahmed Teamah: Fluid Mechanics (Mech ENG 3O04) and Introduction to Computational Fluid Mechanics and Heat Transfer (Mech ENG 4J03)

“It was a great pleasure for me to receive such a prestigious award. I am glad to contribute to the exceptional teaching experience of undergraduate students in Mechanical Engineering Department. I am looking foward to a fulfilling teaching career after finishing my PhD program.”

Therese Quigley Award of Excellence for Graduate Student Leadership in Athletics 

The Therese Quigley award recognizes excellence in leadership in athletics and those who encourage participation, team building, and commitment to sportsmanship. 

Evan Ubene running

Evan Ubene: Cross Country/Distance Track, MASc candidate, Chemical Engineering

“Winning this award came as a welcome surprise to me. I am thankful to those in the graduate community who nominated and selected me for the Therese Quigley award and pledge to continue pushing for our institutions to put the health of employees and students over profit.”

Luke Yaeger – Ubene’s former teammate and a PhD candidate in biochemistry, Wilson Leader and Braley Fellow – says the award recognizes Ubene’s drive in and outside of athletics.

“I think a lot of his motivation comes from genuinely caring about what he dedicated his time to; it’s clear he’s not just collecting lines on his resume. Part of that is being selfless and working toward collective goals, whether it’s with social causes or in running. And most importantly, his moral compass is certainly working and put to good use.”

Dean’s Award for Excellence in Communicating Graduate Research

This award recognizes winners of the first-ever inaugural GradFlix showcase at McMaster University – where students created original, animated one-minute shorts to explain their graduate research. 

Calvin Zhu outside of Thode wearing a McMaster face mask

Calvin Zhu, PhD student, Biomedical engineering

Calvin Zhu won first prize for his creative piece: Quantifying Trust in Deep Learning Ultrasound Models by Investigating Hardware and Operator Variance.

“I’ve always loved storytelling and I’m a strong believer in “explainable science,” so GradFlix was a great blend of the two and a lot of fun. I didn’t expect to win at all. In fact, I often felt like a black sheep in a world of academia where people love to explain my work as “transforming extracted features from an image to create abstract representations using principal component analysis to form data clusters and distance measurements as a means to distinguish imaging technologists,” whereas I’d say, “imagine we needed duck experts…” It definitely feels great to be recognized for the skills I put a lot of work into over the years, but at the same time I don’t think I’m anything special. I think every researcher has a great story to tell, and so I just told mine.”