Janis Terpenny, professor of engineering education and mechanical engineering in the Virginia Tech College of Engineering, has been appointed as a program director for the National Science Foundation.

Beginning Aug. 30, Terpenny will serve as program director for the Division of Undergraduate Education, Directorate for Education and Human Resources at the National Science Foundation. She will work in programs advocating science, technology, engineering and math; as well as cyber service programs.

Terpenny also recently was named a Fellow of the Institute of Industrial Engineers, the highest classification for the group's members that recognizes outstanding contributions by members of the industrial engineering profession. She was among 15 fellows honored this year by the organization.

The group cited Terpenny for her work as the director and co-founder of the National Science Foundation’s Center for e-Design, her strong record of research funding and collaboration with industry and colleagues from a variety of disciplines and universities, and her contributions and leadership in engineering education.

Terpenny’s research is focused on revolutionizing the design of engineered products and systems. Her primary focus is on design process and methods for early stages of problem/requirements definition and the generation and evaluation of design concepts; the representation, capture and reuse of knowledge and information in design; the definition of product families and platforms; and methods to predict and plan for obsolescence in products and systems. She received her bachelor’s degree from Virginia Commonwealth University and a master’s degree and Ph.D. from Virginia Tech.

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