Thursday, September 28, 2017

Tech Talent Workshop - Friday, Sept. 22, 2017

Dr. Lou Manzione - Dean of CETA
Commissioner Catherine Smith - Dept. of Economics and Community Development (DECD)

All in attendance enjoy the portion of the event presented by Gerry Holland

On Friday, September 22, the College of Engineering, Technology, and Architecture (CETA) and the Barney School of Business hosted a Tech Talent Workshop in the 1877 Club, located in the Harry Jack Gray Center. The workshop was a collaboration with CETA, the Barney School of Business, and Connecticut industry to discuss an evolving partnership. The University of Hartford understands the growing urgency to better prepare students to meet the needs of a business and industry upon graduation, as well as incumbent worker training. The workshop was a call to Conn. industry to express their current needs in a robust and growing job market.
                Dean Louis Manzione opened the event expressing his desire to “develop public, private, and government partnerships to ensure that we stay connected” to the needs of the Conn. business and industry. The University needs to support the rapid growth of technology and change in Conn. in order to stay connected to the best jobs for future students, and the best outcomes for Connecticut businesses. Dean Manzione explained that the solution may not be a new discipline or concentration in our college, but could mean a workshop, or a special certificate program. CETA’s goal is to help Conn. industries quickly realize the skills they need for the current workforce, for both future students and current employees.
                Commissioner Catherine Smith from the Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) touched on some of her plans to attract and retain Connecticut jobs. The DECD’s strategy for growth includes focusing on talent development, data analytics, tourism, green technology such as fuel cells, and understanding the connection between business and universities. Commissioner Smith expressed the importance of talent development above all else.  The “state has a workforce that is #3 in terms of skill” and is “#4 in terms of productivity of our workforce relative to all other states.” she expressed the importance of holding onto that level of skill and productivity in Conn. because we know that is important to the companies and workforce and what they are counting on for the future.
                The workshop included four guest speakers from the industry of Connecticut: Rob Thomas ’04, Gerry Holland, Brian Romano ‘83, and Sergio Loureiro. The Senior Vice President of CNA, Rob Thomas ‘04, spoke about data analytics and the importance of engineers in the insurance industry. He explained that data analytics are actually two separate things, data and the analysis of that data. An example of how data is different now is that companies need someone to engineer a digital interface for the customer to purchase insurance.  It’s not just the technical skills that we need here, we need practical skills, and we need to join the two, just like data and analysis go together, explained Rob Thomas.
                Vice President of Estimating and Marketing for Bartlett Brainerd Eacott Inc., Gerry Holland, gave a poignant analogy saying, if we stand in a circle and face inward it becomes much easier to move and adapt to the change in design. The need to engage in the field with different mediums of technology is cleanly evident in construction. Regardless of discipline, we must stay connected and look to each other in order to adjust and adapt to the rapid advancement of technology. Design, construction, and institutions are tied together and must work together to meet the demands of the future.
Manager of Control Systems and IT for A.G. Russell, Brian Romano ’83, explained that as a lean company, his firm cannot afford to take two years to train new graduates and recruiting employees from other companies can cost up to $30,000 in relocation costs. Romano is working with the University of Hartford and Central Connecticut State University to develop ways to educate students and current employees to enable them to be productive employees right away, such as workshops for current employees, internships, apprenticeships, and adjusting University programs.
                The Vice President of Enterprise Capacity for Pratt and Whitney, Sergio Loureiro, mentioned that the metrology certificate program, conducted by Professor Sahay and Professor Ghosh, has been very successful for them. Rob Thomas made note that these programs are what company’s need to train current employees and close an existing skill gap. Loureiro believes anything that higher education can do will be beneficial to “accelerate the knowledge transfer” and increase productivity. He also points out that many aspects of the company will be turning digital which will require new skills from their employees and future students, and it is crucial to work together to customize the right learning model.
                The workshop closed with a discussion. CETA already hosts events and programs that aim to address some of concerns that were raised, such as the Networkology events, the UTC Metrology certificate program, and the CETA Design Expo. The Networkology event helps students socialize with working professionals in their field. The CETA Design Expo enables students to have a crossover understanding of the engineering field while working with their peers to design and present their collaborative project to professionals in industry. CETA and the Barney School of Business will plan follow-up events to discuss next steps and new approaches to ensure the ongoing success of Connecticut business and industry.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Civil Engineering Students Trip to Springfield Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility

On Friday, September 15, twelve students from the Water Quality Engineering Laboratory spent six hours at the Springfield Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility conducting settling tests and performing calculations to evaluate the facility's clarifier (settling tank) capacity.  The Springfield sewer collection system combines street drainage and domestic sewage so that flow through the treatment plant can increase by six-fold in a very short time period during rain events.  Operators need to understand how their clarifiers will perform so that they can prevent solids from washing out of the plant to the Connecticut River during these high-flow events.
Two professional engineers from Woodard & Curran who specialize in wastewater treatment plant design and troubleshooting trained the group in how to perform the tests and analyze the results.  Professors Brown and Dean Pines accompanied the group.  Suez NA, operators of the plant, hosted the event.
Later in the semester, three-person teams from this group will visit four other wastewater treatment plants in CT and MA to perform similar tests, providing a free service to wastewater treatment plants while demonstrating the University's commitment to partnering with outside entities to maximize the career, entrepreneurial, and intellectual preparedness of students.
Students that attended:

Michael Albanese

Aly Ali

Ali Alrayshan

Joseph Beauchesne

Katherine Bednarz

Ian Downey

Fation Misku

Matthew Murphy

Samantha Nyser

Adam Pasternack

Sarah Socolosky

Elijah Stewart

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

CETA Students on Winning Team at the Hackathon - Hosted by Upward Hartford and InsurTech Hartford

Three CETA engineering students, Erin Sussmann (Electrical Engineering/Computer Science), Kaiti Stylianides (Mechanical Engineering) and Nicole Carr (Biomedical Engineering), were crucial members of the winning team, Mode, at the 48-hour long Hackathon hosted by Upward Hartford and InsurTech Hartford during the weekend of September 8th. Team Mode won first place in the competition and was awarded with a $5000 prize.
What is a Hackathon? Contrary to what it seems, a hackathon is not an exclusively programming event. The three engineering students arrived Friday (Sept. 8th) night at Upward Hartford, the co-working space that hosted the event. They found out that Hackathons are for anyone with an idea, a competitive spirit, and desire for knowledge. The only things necessary include coffee, a laptop, and an open mind.

The general theme of the hackathon, insurance technology, was presented as a broad challenge, inviting innovation and imagination to come up with new ideas to tackle current issues with the technology in the insurance business. Ideas were pitched and teams were formed as “companies” to create a product and workable business plan. The 48-hour marathon of research, design, and development began. 

Kaiti, Nicole, and Erin, the three CETA engineering students, joined Mode, a team of eclectic strangers whose diversity in experience and excitement for the event made the hackathon truly enjoyable. In addition, the team includes an English grad with a passion for coding, two insurance company employees with a dream and the programming know-how to make it happen, and a few business students from UConn. CETA students did front-end coding to make the website usable and conducted research into many aspects of the insurance industry. The students learned about all aspects of creating a technology start-up, including development, marketing, research & development, and financing. The idea of Mode became a real insurance company for all phone-based e-commerce. The team worked specifically on a very innovative aspect of the company for the 48-hour weekend, and by the end, they had created a business plan, a financial plan, and a live demo of the app.

Team Mode won first place in the competition and was awarded numerous opportunities to continue developing the company at Upward Hartford, along with the $5000 monetary prize. CETA students were also able to take advantage of the wonderful opportunity to network with professionals in the insurance and technology industry.

Follow the link to read the press release from Insurtech Hartford:

Monday, September 18, 2017

Professor Ted Sussmann - Cape Town

 Professor Ted Sussmann

Iron Ore Train: 3.7 km long, with (4) 50 kV AC locomotives and 2 diesel locomotives hauling 40,000 tons almost 1000 km from mine to port.

Civil, Environmental, and Biomedical Engineering Professor Ted Sussmann presented papers at the 11th International Heavy Haul Conference in Cape Town, South Africa, during the week of September 2-6, 2017. The papers presented were titled “Track Structural Design for Maintenance and Rehabilitation with Automated Track Inspection Data” and “Influence of Tie-Ballast Interface on Transition Zone Performance.

 In addition to the presentation, Sussmann chaired a session titled “Ballast and Geotechnical” issues in Heavy Haul and served as a Technical Program Reviewer.  The International Heavy Haul Association is a group that fosters technical developments that support the efficient transport of heavy haul freight traffic often associated with bulk natural resource commodities like iron ore.

Twenty years ago, Sussmann gave his first international presentation at this conference in Cape Town, so this conference served as a reunion of sorts.  South Africa is a country rich in natural resources making the heavy haul railway a vital economic link.  This served as the main reason for selecting one of their main ports, Cape Town, as the host city for this quadrennial conference.

UNOTEs - 9/2017



Thursday, September 14, 2017

It's National Drive Electric Week!

It is National Drive Electric Week! September 9-17, 2017 is dedicated to heightening awareness of the widespread availability of electric and plug-in hybrid-electric vehicles and the potential benefits of choosing electric over gasoline. In honor of National Drive Electric Week 2017, CETA would like to congratulate the University of Hartford Green 707 club on their first track test this past weekend. Paul Mangelsorf, the club president, announced the test results on their Facebook page with some pictures of the action.

To check out their recent activity and more about their test results: For more info on National Drive Electric Week:      

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

New Changes to the CETA Student Ambassadors and Leadership Society

The College of Engineering, Technology, and Architecture (CETA) is excited to announce some recent changes to the CETA Student Ambassadors program. The CETA Student Ambassadors program began in September 2013 as a WELFund Grant funded program, now known as The Women’s Advancement Initiative. As of fall 2015, the program became a CETA funded organization and has continued to grow and evolve each year. Most prominently, the organization has an updated name: CETA Student Ambassadors & Leadership Society and revised mission:

Program mission:
  • Promote leadership and communication skills of current undergraduates in CETA
  • Provide self-development opportunities for current undergraduates in CETA
  • Attract quality prospective students to all programs in CETA
  • Mentor entering, first – year students as they begin in CETA and for the first year
  • Build a more welcoming community for all CETA students
  • Provide exceptional community outreach for all CETA programs
  • Demonstrate equal representation of male and female society members to best portray CETA
CETA hosts various honor societies, however this leadership society is unique for many reasons. The CETA Student Ambassadors & Leadership Society represents the entire college, not just one discipline / major, and requires a selection process to become a member. In addition, our Leadership Society members will now serve as CETA’s mentors as well, for all incoming First-Year students. Also, as a prominent part of the Society’s mission, members will continue to reach out to both prospective and current students, promoting CETA and the University, furthering the goal of creating a welcoming and inclusive community.

Beginning this fall 2017, all incoming, First-Year students received a welcome message and introduction from their mentor prior to arriving on campus and officially met all mentors at their first Freshmen Dialogue class. In previous years, the mentor contact prior to arrival was not the case; we, in CETA, hope that cultivating this relationship sooner will ensure a smoother transition to University life. Throughout the first semester, Leadership Society members will meet with their mentees a minimum of three times, in addition to their initial meeting.

Within the CETA Student Ambassadors & Leadership Society is a three member Lead Team that have been selected from the returning members to lead the Society through the academic year. The returning members must also apply for this honor and are selected by the previous year’s Lead Team and advising faculty and staff.

The CETA Student Ambassadors & Leadership society is a fantastic opportunity for CETA students. Members will attend various on-campus/off-campus events, monthly training sessions/meetings, one-on-one visits with prospective students and their families, and have numerous opportunities to work on personal and professional development. We are proud to announce the new and improved CETA Student Ambassadors & Leadership Society!

If you would like to learn more about CETA Student Ambassadors & Leadership Society, please contact one of the advisors:

Julie Spring –
Dr. Ying Yu –
Dr. Hisham Alnajjar –

UNOTEs - 9/12/17

Monday, September 11, 2017

Shertukde Honored With IEEE SA/EAB Award

Hemchandra M. Shertukde, professor of electrical and computer engineering in the College of Engineering, Technology, and Architecture, has received the the 2017 IEEE EAB/SA Standards Education Award for his exceptional achievements in standards education activities. See the official awards letter by downloading the document below.
UNOTEs - 9/11/17

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

CETA Civil Engineering Seniors Tour Springfield Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility

The Civil Engineering senior class accompanied by Prof. Todd Brown and Dr. Dave Pines on Fri., Sept. 1.

On Friday, September 1, 42 members of the civil engineering senior class attended a tour of the Springfield Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility in Agawam, MA. The tour was part of their CE 420 Water Quality Engineering I class. 

Mickey Nowak, the facility manager for Suez NA, hosted the tour which began with a presentation and discussion of the importance of wastewater treatment and the processes used at the Springfield Plant.  Mr. Nowak led the group on a tour of the facility so that students could see, smell and discuss each process in the plant, getting a sense of the processes that they will be learning how to design in class. Students gained a good sense of the true scale of the treatment plant, as well as how many engineering disciplines contribute to the design and successful operation of the facility.

Professor Todd Brown and Professor Dave Pines accompanied the group of students on the tour. Professor Brown scheduled the tour for the first week of classes to ensure the students would have a common frame of reference as they begin to design the various components within the wastewater treatment plant.
UNOTEs submission - 9/6/17

CETA - The Architecture Department’s Annual Urban Architecture Trip

The College of Engineering, Technology, and Architecture's Department of Architecture had its annual Urban Architecture trip to New York City on Saturday, September 2nd, for the current Architecture Graduate students and Undergraduate seniors. The trip routinely alternates between New York and Boston each year and has been held every fall for the past 7 years. The purpose of the trip is to both examine interesting urban architecture as well as to celebrate the new academic year.
 This year, the students started the day exploring the contemporary architecture of the World Trade Center Memorial, PATH station, and Battery Park city.  Afterward, the students stopped at Chelsea Market for lunch.  Then, the group hiked the Highline Park and overlooked the new Zaha Hadid building, and the construction of the massive Hudson Yards development.  Finally, the students visited the Cloisters Museum in Hudson Heights, where they examined midlevel art and architecture set in a park overlooking the Hudson River.  The day ended with a sleepy bus ride home. Most of the group ate dinner in the Architecture Department Crit Room and talked about their adventures of the day. Professor Seth Holmes, the Architecture Graduate Program Director, remarked that, “all in all, it was a great architectural adventure.”   
Ariane Bamberg, Jan-Hendrik Höhnk, Alexis Hoff, and Maik Wedig were the Graduate students that traveled to NYC on Saturday. The Undergraduate seniors that attended the trip were Alvi Aliaj, Justin Barros, Richard Briggs, Damian Collins, Justin Hernandez, and Daniel Sadowniczyk.  The faculty that led and organized the event are Professor Seth Holmes and Professor Ted Sawruk. The Manager of Graduate programs, Laurie Granstrand, also attended the trip.
UNOTEs submission.

Friday, September 1, 2017

CETA Welcomes New Faculty - Fall 2017

CETA Welcomes New Faculty

Takafumi Asaki

Asst. Prof. in Biomedical Engineering

Takafumi has a B.S. in Biomedical Engineering and Masters in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Hartford, and a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from UConn, Storrs.  Takafumi comes to us from being faculty and Director of the STEM Innovation Laboratory at Texas A&M University since 2014.  At Texas A&M he received the Alice Hamilton Award of Excellence in Occupational Safety and Health “For Leadership through Science by Publishing.”

Yang Yang

Asst. Prof. Civil Engineering / Architecture

Yang received his B.S. in Civil Engineering and M.S. in Bridge and Tunnel Engineering from Tongji University in Shanghai, China, and his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from the Missouri University of Science and Technology.  He comes to us from a position in structural engineering for the consulting company Constructive Engineering Design, Inc. in Kansas.  Yang’s research interests focus on mitigating the impact of structural damage caused by natural and manmade effects such as corrosion, earthquakes, wind, fire, and vehicular impacts.

Ted Diehl

Asst. Prof. in Mechanical Engineering

Ted recently received his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Connecticut and holds a M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and a B.S. in Marine Engineering Systems from the United States Merchant Marine Academy.  He has taught at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy for a total of seven years.  Ted served as the principal structural engineer in the naval architecture department on several projects including structural and design and modifications of deck houses for Military Sealift Command (MSC) vessels and the design of replacement masts, science lab, sonar appendage and crane foundation for National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) vessels.