Named Professorships

An endowed chair or professorship is the highest academic award and honor that the university or college can bestow on a faculty member; such professorships are also an enduring tribute to the donors who establish them.

Funds for the professorships are provided by private gifts to the University of Nebraska Foundation to support current and new distinguished faculty in the College of Engineering. Income from these professorships provide stipends to support competitive salaries and collaborative research, and to help recruit and retain key faculty in support of the college’s overall mission and strategic direction.

Currently, the college holds 30 named professorships at three levels: professor, associate professor, and assistant professor. Six additional faculty in the college have been awarded University named professorships / university professorships.

Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Faculty/Staff Directory

Vitaly Alexandrov
Vitaly Alexandrov

Vitaly Alexandrov, Ph.D.

Title: Richard L. and Carol S. McNeel Associate Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Research interests for Dr. Alexandrov include computational/theoretical electrochemistry, materials for energy storage and conversion. He received an NSF CAREER Award and an American Chemical Society (ACS) Petroleum Research Fund Award.

Hendrik J. Viljoen
Hendrik J. Viljoen

Hendrik J. Viljoen, Ph.D.

Title: College Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Dr. Viljoen’s diverse research interests include developing technologies to minimize the impact of pesticides on the food chain, using ultrasound in tissue engineering, and point-of-care diagnostics and novel cell culture methods. He has been recognized for distinguished scholarship and creative activity as University of Nebraska-Lincoln Willa Cather Professor. He received the college's multi-disciplinary research award and a distinguished research medal from the University of Pretoria.



Civil and Environmental Engineering

Faculty/Staff Directory

Shannon Bartelt-Hunt
Shannon Bartelt-Hunt

Shannon Bartelt-Hunt, Ph.D., P.E.

Title: Donald R. Voelte, Jr. and Nancy A. Keegan Chair of Engineering

Dr. Bartelt-Hunt’s research connects water quality, agriculture and health, focusing on such areas as soil and water contamination, citizen science and water reuse. She and a team of researchers were awarded the Grand Prize for University Research by the American Academy of Environmental Engineers & Scientists. She has received national awards for teaching.

Bruce Dvorak
Bruce Dvorak

Bruce Dvorak, Ph.D., P.E.

Title: Ray Fauss Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering

Dr. Dvorak’s research interests include environmental engineering, physical-chemical treatment processes, life cycle assessment and pollution prevention and environmental sustainability for industry. He has served on the boards of directors for the State of Nebraska Board of Engineers and Architects and the American Water Works Association.

Ronald Faller
Ronald Faller

Ronald Faller, Ph.D.

Title: Willa Cather Research Professor, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Nathan Huynh
Nathan Huynh

Nathan Huynh, Ph.D.

Title: Keith W. Klassmeyer Chair of Civil and Environmental Engineering

As director of the Nebraska Transportation Center, Dr. Huynh oversees the operations, infrastructure, research, and financials of the Center. His primary research areas are freight logistics, intermodal freight terminal design and operations, and smart cities. His secondary research areas are traffic safety, climate and sustainability, and transportation equity.

Daniel Linzell
Daniel Linzell

Daniel Linzell, Ph.D.

Title: Leslie D. Martin Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering

Primary research focus areas for Dr. Linzell include infrastructure health monitoring, structural robustness, and bridge engineering using modeling and laboratory and field testing. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers and ASCE’s Structural Engineering Institute.



Durham School of Architectural Engineering & Construction

Faculty/Staff Directory

Lily Wang
Lily Wang

Lily Wang, Ph.D., P.E.

Title: Charles W. and Margre H. Durham Distinguished Professor of Engineering and Technology

Dr. Wang is an internationally renowned expert in building acoustics, including the effects of noise and reverberation on human perception and performance. She is a fellow of the Acoustical Society of America (ASA) as well as a former president. Dr. Wang is the recipient of the ASA R. Bruce Lindsay Award, an NSF CAREER Award, and the ASHRAE Ralph G. Nevins Physiology and Human Environment Award.

Clarence E. Waters
Clarence E. Waters

Clarence E. Waters, Ph.D., P.E., F.AEI

Title: Aaron Douglas Professorship for Teaching Excellence, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

The Aaron Douglas Professorship is awarded by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Dr. Waters is a Fellow and President Emeritus of the Architectural Engineering Institute and received the first AEI Outstanding Architectural Engineering Educator Award. Twice under his leadership, an Interdisciplinary Team Design Project won the National Council of Examiners of Engineering and Surveying Engineering Grand Prize Award for Connecting Professional Practice and Education.

David Yuill
David Yuill

David Yuill, Ph.D., P.E.

Title: Richard L. and Carol S. McNeel Associate Professor of Architectural Engineering and Construction

Dr. Yuill’s areas of research include high-performance sustainable buildings, smart building technology, energy conservation through smart buildings and fault detection and diagnostics (FDD) in HVAC systems. He has led numerous ASHRAE Technical Committees and is also a member of IBPSA.



Electrical & Computer Engineering

Faculty/Staff Directory

Dennis R. Alexander
Dennis R. Alexander

Dennis R. Alexander, Ph.D.

Title: Kingery Professor of Engineering

Dr. Alexander has developed one of the country’s premier ultra-fast femtosecond laser facilities. Dr. Alexander directs the Center for Electro-Optics and Functionalized Surfaces. He received an Inventor Award for Wireless Laparoscopy from the University of Nebraska Medical Center and several outstanding teaching awards.

Fred Choobineh
Fred Choobineh

Fred Choobineh, Ph.D.

Title: Blackman Distinguished Professor

Dr. Choobineh is widely known for his research in systems engineering. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers and a recipient of Joseph K. Walkup Prominence in Industrial Engineering Award from Iowa State University. He has served on the state Board of Engineers and Architects.

Natale Ianno
Natale Ianno

Natale Ianno, Ph.D.

Title: Lott Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Dr. Ianno has developed an extensive research program in thin film material deposition and processing, including materials for photovoltaic applications and the generation of electric power using neutrons. In addition, he is nationally known for developing an understanding of material failure mechanisms during space flight.

Yongfeng Lu
Yongfeng Lu

Yongfeng Lu, Ph.D.

Title: Lott University Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Dr. Lu is a leading researcher in laser-based material processing, characterization and imaging. He served as president of Laser Institute of America and the International Academy of Photonics and Laser Engineering and received the Schawlow Award from the Laser Institute of America. He is the fellow of SPIE, the Optical Society, LIA and IAPLE.

Lance C. Pérez
Lance C. Pérez

Lance C. Pérez, Ph.D.

Title: Omar H. Heins Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Dean, College of Engineering

Dr. Pérez is an award-winning teacher and leading researcher in information processing and engineering education. He received the IEEE Education Society Edwin C. Jones, Jr. Meritorious Service Award for significant leadership contributions and is a Fellow of the American Society of Engineering Education.

Wei Qiao
Wei Qiao

Wei Qiao, Ph.D.

Title: Clyde Hyde Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Research interests for Dr. Qiao include renewable energy systems, power electronic systems, electric motor drives, energy storage systems, electric power grids, modeling and control of complex systems, among other areas. He is a Fellow of the IEEE and has received the IEEE Power Electronics Society Sustainable Energy Systems Technical Achievement Award, an NSF CAREER Award, and numerous other accolades.

Mathias Schubert
Mathias Schubert

Mathias Schubert, Ph.D.

Title: J.A. Woollam Distinguished Professor

Dr. Schubert is a world leader in spectroscopic ellipsometry, contributing to the development of blue and white LEDs and fast processors. He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society and was named an Honorary Doctor of Technology from Linkoping University in Sweden.

Hamid Sharif
Hamid Sharif

Hamid Sharif, Ph.D.

Title: Charles J. Vranek College Professor

Dr. Sharif works in developing railroad wireless communication and in cybersecurity defense. He is a Fellow of IEEE, a distinguished lecturer for the IEEE Vehicular Technology Society, and received a Fulbright Fellowship Award for Science, Technology and Innovation for Finland.

John Woollam
John Woollam

John Woollam, Ph.D.

Title: George Holmes Distinguished Professor of Electrical Engineering, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Elected to the National Academy of Inventors, Dr. Woollam is an internationally known expert in spectroscopic ellipsometry and instrumentation. He received the R.F. Bunshah Award from the International Conference on Metallurgical Coatings and Thin Films and is a Fellow of the American Physical Society and the American Vacuum Society.



Mechanical & Materials Engineering

Faculty/Staff Directory

Bai Cui
Bai Cui

Bai Cui, Ph.D.

Title: R. Vernon McBroom Associate Professor of Mechanical and Materials Engineering

Dr. Cui’s research areas cover advanced metal and ceramic materials for extreme environments, laser additive manufacturing, and laser shock peening. He was recognized by the Global Star Award from Engineering Ceramics Division of American Ceramic Society and Faculty Research & Creative Activity Award from the College of Engineering.

Yuris Dzenis
Yuris Dzenis

Yuris Dzenis, Ph.D.

Title: R. Vernon McBroom College Professor

Dr. Dzenis’ research focuses on high-performance nano-bio-materials, nanomanufacturing, and predictive nondestructive evaluation, working to create tougher fibers for advanced structural, defense, and biomedical applications. He has served as a visiting professor at institutions in New Zealand, Italy, France and Japan.

Shane Farritor
Shane Farritor

Shane Farritor, Ph.D.

Title: David B. and Nancy K. Lederer Professor of Engineering

Dr. Farritor’s professional interests center on miniature surgical robots and space robotics, as well as developing community makerspaces. He is a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors and is the founder of two start-up companies.

Ryan Pedrigi
Ryan Pedrigi

Ryan Pedrigi, Ph.D.

Title: Robert F. and Myrna L. Krohn Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering

Dr. Pedrigi’s research explores the importance of mechanics in regulating the biological functions of cells to improve medicine through the development of new therapeutics, medical devices, and computational tools. Through more than 15 years in research, he has developed an expertise in biomechanics and mechanobiology that includes an NSF CAREER Award.

Kamlakar P. Rajurkar
Kamlakar P. Rajurkar

Kamlakar P. Rajurkar, Ph.D.

Title: College Distinguished Professor of Engineering

Dr. Rajurkar is internationally recognized for his contributions in advanced manufacturing techniques, including receiving the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) /American Society Mechanical Engineers M. Eugene Merchant Manufacturing Medal and SME's Gold Medal. He is a Fellow with SME and the International Academy for Production Engineering.

Jeffrey Shield
Jeffrey Shield

Jeffrey Shield, Ph.D.

Title: Robert W. Brightfelt Professor of Engineering

Dr. Shield’s research centers around developing nanoscale and nanostructured functional materials used in energy conversion or sensing applications, as well as advanced materials characterization using electron microscopy. He was given the Pi Tau Sigma Gold Key Award and has received several distinguished teaching awards.

Joseph Turner
Joseph Turner

Joseph Turner, Ph.D.

Title: Robert W. Brightfelt Professor of Mechanical and Materials Engineering

Dr. Turner’s research focuses on quantitative modeling and characterization of materials and microstructures using ultrasound and scanning probe microscopy. He is a Fellow of the Acoustical Society of America and received the Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel Research Prize for his research achievements from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.

Jian Wang
Jian Wang

Jian Wang, Ph.D.

Title: Wilmer J. and Sally L. Hergenrader Presidential Chair of Mechanical and Materials Engineering

Dr. Wang’s areas of research include exploring the microstructures-deformation mechanisms-properties relations and designing alloys and composites for applications under extreme conditions using multiscale materials modeling and experiments. He is a Fellow of ASME and ASM International and received the TMS Materials Processing & Manufacturing Division (MPMD) Distinguished Scientist/ Engineer Award.

Ruiguo Yang
Ruiguo Yang

Ruiguo Yang, Ph.D.

Title: Robert F. and Myrna L. Krohn Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering

Dr. Yang’s research primarily focuses on relationships between cells – how they are joined, how they communicate, and their resilience – with a goal of providing the foundation for new medical breakthroughs in areas such as drug delivery and treatments for diseases. He received an NSF CAREER Award and a National Institutes of Health COBRE Early Investigator Award.



School of Computing

Faculty/Staff Directory

Stephen Cooper
Stephen Cooper

Stephen Cooper, Ph.D.

Title: Chancellor's Professor, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Dr. Cooper serves as executive director of the Jeffrey S. Raikes School of Computer Science and Management. His research areas focus on computer science education, particularly in program visualization and understanding how students learn to program. He is an ACM Distinguished Educator.

Carrick Detweiler
Carrick Detweiler

Carrick Detweiler, Ph.D.

Title: Susan J. Rosowski Professor, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Dr. Detweiler’s research interests in robotics include the development of field, agricultural, and flying robots, and exploring the boundaries between robots and sensor networks. He co-directs the NIMBUS Lab at UNL and is co-founder and CEO of Drone Amplified.

Brittany Duncan
Brittany Duncan

Brittany Duncan, Ph.D.

Title: Ross McCollum Associate Professor of Computing, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Dr. Duncan is a leader in the field of unmanned systems and interactions between humans and robots. She received an NSF CAREER Award to pioneer research on foundational interactions between novice users and drones.

Leen-Kiat Soh
Leen-Kiat Soh

Leen-Kiat Soh, Ph.D.

Title: Charles Bessey Professor, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Dr. Soh conducts research on multiagent systems and modeling, computer science education, image processing, and intelligent data analytics. He has also contributed to building computer-aided education systems, improving K-12 computer science education, and broadening participation in computing.

Mehmet Can Vuran
Mehmet Can Vuran

Mehmet Can Vuran, Ph.D.

Title: Dale M. Jensen Chair in Computing, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Consistently listed among the most-cited researchers in computer science, Dr. Vuran is a National Strategic Research Institute (NSRI) Fellow and a Fellow of the Daugherty Water for Food Institute and earned an NSF CAREER Award. His primary research focus areas include wireless underground communications, agricultural Internet of Things, embedded and autonomous systems, and cyber-physical networking.

Marilyn Wolf
Marilyn Wolf

Marilyn Wolf, Ph.D.

Title: Elmer E. Koch Professor of Engineering, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Dr. Wolf is a pioneer in embedded computing. She co-founded Verificon Corporation, founded ACM Transactions on Embedded Computing Systems, and wrote the first textbook on embedded computing, Computers as Components. She received the IEEE Computer Society Harry H. Goode Memorial Award for contributions to embedded, hardware-software co-design, and real-time computer vision systems. She is a Fellow of IEEE and the ACM.