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President of National Academy of Engineering Named Drexels 2010 Engineer of the Year

February 9, 2010

President of the National Academy of Engineering and President Emeritus of Massachusetts Institute of Technology Charles Vest, will be honored as Drexel University’s 2010 Engineer of the Year, Selçuk Güçeri, dean of the College of Engineering announced today.

Vest is a pioneer in holographic interferometry, a field that takes holographic images of two similar scenes in order to display slight differences between those scenes. This is what used for a variety of real-time, non-invasive engineering functions, including vibration and structural analysis and stress evaluation. As a faculty member at the University of Michigan, Vest and his graduate students used holographic interferometry to develop quantitative measurements of properties and motions.

Vest served as president of the MIT from 1990-2004. During his tenure, he forged partnerships with academia, government and industry and advocated for open, global scientific communication, travel and sharing of intellectual resources. In addition to his accomplishments in education, Vest has served on the Board of Directors at DuPont and IBM, was vice chair of the U.S. Council on Competitiveness and served on various federal committees and commissions.

In 2006, he received the National Medal of Technology from President George W. Bush for his “visionary leadership in advancing America's technological workforce and capacity for innovation through revitalizing the national partnership among academia, government and industry.”

In honor of Vest’s contributions to engineering, he will be recognized at a ceremony on February 19, 2010 at the Rittenhouse Hotel that will conclude Drexel’s celebration of National Engineers Week.

Past Drexel Engineer of the Year recipients include Christopher Ferguson, commander of NASA’s STS-126 Endeavour, STS-115 Atlantis and distinguished Drexel alumnus of mechanical engineering (’84); Bernard Amadei, founding president of Engineers Without Borders-USA and co-founder of Engineers Without Borders-International, Dean Kamen, president of DEKA Research and Development Corp. and founder of FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), Robert Koerner, Drexel emeritus professor and former H.L. Bowman Professor of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering and Director of Geosynthetic Research Institute, Mark Adler, the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s Mars Exploration Program architect and Rover Mission manager.

For more information about Drexel’s 2010 Engineers Week, visit

For more information on Vest, visit


News Media Contacts:

Noah Cohen, Office of University Relations 215-895-2705, 267-228-5599 (cell) or

Elizabeth Brachelli, Drexel University College of Engineering 215-895-6454, 267-357-2527 (cell) or

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