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The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) School of Engineering is the recipient of an Institutional Award of Excellence from the Society for Design and Process Science (SDPS).

Only four nationwide universities were recognized for institutional excellence by SDPS at its 15th anniversary celebration and international conference in June 2010, in Dallas, Texas.

"The Institutional Award of Excellence is a great honor and reflects our school-wide commitment to working across disciplines," says Linda Lucas, dean of the School of Engineering. "Being one of only four institutions to be recognized by the SDPS puts us in unique company and solidifies our school's reputation as an academic leader."

The SDPS conference focus was integrating arts and sciences, engineering and business principles to change academic understanding, a process SDPS calls Transformative Transdisciplinary Synthesis (TTS), which is achieving transformative goals through transdisciplinary means.

Murat Tanik, Ph.D., a professor in the UAB Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and a SDPS member, says the School of Engineering embodies the principles of TTS in the laboratory and classroom.

"The UAB School of Engineering has embraced the idea of transformative research and learning opportunities that are transdisciplinary," Tanik says. "That means the school's research is not only interdisciplinary but translational beyond disciplines, and we promote a focused integration of studies for students beginning their freshman year and through their degree completion."

Tanik attended the SDPS conference along with Lee Moradi, Ph.D., the director of research engineering at the UAB Center for Biophysical Sciences and Engineering.