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Shih-Chi Liu, NSF Program Director, ENG/CMS, Division of Civil and Mechanical Systems, has been awarded the 2003 Appreciation Prize by the Architectural Institute of Japan for his leadership in fostering U.S.-Japanese collaboration in earthquake disaster mitigation technology.

He also received an award from the China Seismological Bureau in April in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the promotion of cooperation in earthquake engineering between China and the U.S.

George C. Lee was honored for his exceptional contributions over two decades to China-US cooperative research in earthquake engineering and civil infrastructure systems. Zhou Ji, Ministry of Education, PRC and Tieyong Zuo, President of Beijing University of Technology, presented George with a plaque and Chinese-style vase during the Workshop on Protection of Urban Infrastructure and Public Buildings against Earthquake and Manmade Disasters in Beijing, China, February 21-22, 2003 (see workshop review).

Rupa Purasinghe, Structural Engineering faculty member at California State University at Los Angeles (CSLA) received the Civil Engineering Professor of the Year Award from the CSLA Engineering Computer Science, and Technology Student Council in February 2003. The award recipient is selected by students themselves based on superior teaching performance and dedication to the students. Courses he teaches include Freshman Civil Engineering Design Project and Senior Civil Engineering Comprehensive Design Project.

Catholic University of America student Nishadi Karunarathne received first prize in the District of Columbia Council of Engineering and Architectural Societies' (DCCEAS) 2003 Undergraduate Level Student Paper competition, for a paper based on research she completed in the MCEER REU program under the supervision of UB Prof. Michael Constantinou. She also won first prize for the same paper in the Washington Society of Engineers' (WSE) 2003 College Paper Competition, after it was submitted by the DCCEAS. She received both awards at the annual DCCEAS banquet on February 22, 2003. Each award included a five hundred dollar prize. Nishade's advisor at Catholic University is Prof. P. Tsopelas.

Belen Valencia, M.S. candidate in the Department of Civil Engineering at California State University at Los Angeles (CSLA), received two student awards during the 2002-2003 academic year. The first is one of several student awards given to outstanding students from the Structural Engineering Association of Southern California (SEAOSC), presented at the Annual Student Night, in February of 2003. The second award is the Civil Engineering student of the year award from the College of Engineering, Computer Science and Technology at CSLA, also awarded in February 2003.

Diego Lopez Garcia, Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering at the University at Buffalo, was given the "Most Outstanding Student, 2002-2003" award during the Graduate Student Awards Night on April 12, 2003. The honor, given by UB's Graduate Student Association, is open to all graduate students in any program, as long as they are nominated by another student. Diego was nominated by Claudia C. MarinMarin, a fellow engineering graduate student.

Donald Goralski, Senior Program Officer, Industry/User Partnerships, received the May C. Randazzo Outstanding Practitioner Award from the Buffalo/Niagara Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA). The award is given to a Western New York public relations professional who has made significant contributions to the field of public relations by applying public relations principles in a professional manner, displaying the highest of ethics and dedication to serving the community. Don was nominated by his colleagues, Stanton Hudson, Assistant Professor, Department of Communication Studies, Canisius College and Jeff Peterson, Director of Communication and Advancement, Health Association of Niagara County, Inc.


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