By Mark Sublette

CLEMSON — The Clemson University School of Materials Science and Engineering was recognized at the international level with five individual and group awards at the 2009 Materials Science and Technology Conference in Pittsburgh.

The annual meeting, sponsored jointly by the leading materials engineering and professional societies, brings together international researchers from universities and industry and recognizes top achievements in research, teaching and outreach in the materials field.

John Ballato, associate vice president for research and economic development at Clemson University and a professor in the School of Materials Science and Engineering, was elected a Fellow of the American Ceramic Society (ACerS). Fellows are recognized for their outstanding contributions to the ceramic arts or sciences by their productive scholarship in ceramic science and technology and outstanding service to the ACerS.

The Ceramic Educational Council's Outstanding Educator Award was presented to Kathleen Richardson, the director of the School of Materials Science and Engineering, for her creativity in teaching and directing student research.

Jimmy Shi, a graduate student in the School of Materials Science and Engineering from Beijing, China, was one of three students selected worldwide for a Diamond Graduate Excellence in Material Sciences award for both his oral presentation at the conference and his record of academic excellence. His research on high temperature aerospace materials was conducted through the support of a U.S. Air Force Scientific Research Young Investigator Award to his adviser, professor Jian Luo.

Charmayne Smith, a senior from Moncks Corner majoring in ceramic and materials engineering, won second place from among 17 competing universities at the National Undergraduate Student Speaking Contest hosted by the Ceramic Educational Council of ACerS. She represented Clemson University after winning the local speaking competition hosted by the Clemson Materials Advantage Student Chapter.

Clemson's Materials Advantage Student Chapter was one of five chapters selected nationally to receive a Chapter of Excellence Award. The Clemson chapter was honored for its series of events hosted during the 2008-2009 school year focusing on professional development and K-12 outreach. Three of the chapter officers – Kim Celluci, Alex Evert and Stephanie Whitson – were at the conference to receive this award. The chapter adviser is professor Molly Kennedy.

The Materials Science and Technology conference is sponsored by the American Ceramic Society; the Association of Iron and Steel Technology; the Minerals, Metals and Materials Society; and ASM International.