Material Advantage, a student organization in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, received the 2015-2016 Most Outstanding Chapter Award at the MS&T Conference, which took place Oct. 23-27 in Salt Lake City, Utah. The award was given “in recognition of overall excellence in chapter programming, career development, service, social activities, and chapter management.” MS&T (Materials Science & Technology) is a technical meeting and exhibition organized by a joint partnership between the American Ceramic Society, the Association for Iron & Steel, ASM International, and TMS, the Minerals, Metals & Materials Society.

Linda McGown, the William Weightman Walker Professor of Chemistry in the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, was selected for the Power List 2016 by The Analytical Scientist magazine. The Power List 2016 celebrates the top 50 most influential women in the analytical sciences. The list was published in the October 2016 issue of the magazine. “I am most passionate about working with my students and collaborators to apply fundamental understanding of chemical measurements to challenging questions in analysis through establishment of thoughtful, innovative approaches. My recent entry into the field of astrobiology is particularly close to my heart,” she told the magazine.

Computer science graduate student Salles Viana Gomes de Magalhaes won the First Place Overall Award, and the First Place Award for Rensselaer, in the 2016 TripAdvisor programming challenge, held Sept. 17. Graduate and undergraduate students from 18 universities in the U.S. and Canada participated, and the top two students from each school, as well as the top three students overall, were awarded cash prizes. This year’s challenge consisted of developing algorithms for solving a variation on the job-scheduling problem, in this case, scheduling robots to efficiently complete jobs. Salles’ adviser is W. Randolph Franklin, professor of electrical, computer, and systems engineering.

Colleen Morrissey ’95, senior network engineer in DotCIO, was named the recipient of an Internet2 Technology Exchange gender diversity scholarship in September. The scholarships, which provide support for information technology women professionals to attend Internet2 technical conferences, spotlight women in the field of IT and their efforts to use technology to serve the faculty, staff, and students of their individual institutions. The Internet2 Technology Exchange convenes technology leaders to share expertise in a forum designed to facilitate the cross-pollination of technical ideas and information. Internet2 is an advanced technology community founded by the nation’s leading higher education institutions in 1996.

The RPI Computer Security Club, RPISEC, was named one of 15 finalists in the NYU Tandon School of Engineering’s annual Cyber Security Awareness Week (CSAW) games, the world’s biggest student-led cybersecurity contest. The Rensselaer team, comprising Nick Burnett, Joshua Ferrell, Kareem El-Faramawi, and Branden Clark, bested more than 2,000 teams from 109 countries to become one of the finalists. The competition will take place at NYU Tandon’s campus in Brooklyn, Nov. 10-12, 2016.

Lee Ligon, associate professor of biological sciences, has been elected chair of the American Society for Cell Biology’s Public Information Committee (PIC) for a three-year term. Ligon has been active with the PIC since 2009 as an associate, a regular member, and most recently ex officio while on leave from Rensselaer as an AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellow in Washington, D.C., with the U.S. Agency for International Development.