Thanks to the generous support of donors, two new endowed professorships have been created in the Utah State University College of Engineering.
Ron Sims, a professor of biological engineering, has been named the Huntsman Endowed Professor of Biosystems and Environmental Engineering. David Tarboton, the director of the Utah Water Research Laboratory and a professor of civil and environmental engineering, has been named the Sant Endowed Professor of Water Resources Engineering.
The professorships — the newest in a series of three endowments created in recent years — reflect USU’s land-grant mission and fortify the university’s role as a research leader.
“I cannot overstate the importance and value these professorships bring to our college and the university,” said Jagath Kaluarachchi, dean of the College of Engineering. “Students will directly benefit through greater access to improved research and learning experiences, and we will see greater visibility of our academic programs.”
Sims has led an extraordinary career in industry and higher education, creating lasting contributions in the fields of bioprocess engineering, public health and environmental sustainability. Through his research, Sims leads groundbreaking advances in bio-based manufacturing and sustainable engineering. He has spent over a decade pioneering methods to grow and harvest algae for the production of bio-based products such as plastics, fuel, fertilizer and therapeutics.
Funding for the professorship is provided by the Huntsman Foundation. David Huntsman serves as a member of the Utah State University Board of Trustees and says he is pleased to expand the Huntsman Foundation legacy into the College of Engineering.
Tarboton is a renowned water resources engineer and hydrologist. He has authored nearly 100 research manuscripts, received dozens of accolades for teaching and research, and is a fellow of the American Geophysical Union.
Since joining USU in 1990, he has mentored dozens of graduate students who today work in water resources engineering roles in Utah and around the world. Tarboton is a trailblazer in the emerging field of hydrological information systems — an innovative discipline that will revolutionize how engineers and Earth scientists share hydrologic data around the globe.
Funding for his professorship is provided by David G. and Diann L. Sant. The Sant family has provided more than two decades of generous support to students and faculty at USU. Their meaningful contributions support student projects, community outreach, design competitions and dozens of student scholarship recipients who go on to lead rewarding engineering careers.
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