Ashutosh Sharma (PhD '98, Chemical Engineering) returned to his
alma mater in April 2016 to receive the 2016 Distinguished
International Alumni Award from UB's Alumni Association.
Sharma is an internationally renowned scientist who was recently
appointed Secretary of the Department of Science and Technology of
India, a cabinet-level position in the government of Prime Minister
Narendra Modi. He is currently on leave as Institute Chair
Professor at the Indian Institute of Technology, where he was the
founding coordinator of the Nanosciences Center and the Advanced
Imaging Center at the school in Kanpur.
A student of the distinguished UB scientist Professor Eli
Ruckenstein, Sharma also delivered the Eighth Annual Eli
Ruckenstein Lecture during his visit, at the invitation of the
Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering. Sharma spent
part of his visit meeting with faculty and students of his home
department and learning about their research and education
endeavors. He also visited Professor Ruckenstein, a National Medal
of Science recipient, to discuss current research activities.
The Distinguished International Alumni Award was presented
during a dinner on April 15 honoring Sharma at the home of
President and Mrs. Tripathi. Mary Garlick Roll, president of the UB
Alumni Association, assisted by Wei Loon Leong, Director of
International Alumni Engagement, presented the award on behalf of
During his visit, Sharma and Tripathi signed a Memorandum of
Understanding enabling UB to join a small group of elite U.S.
universities participating in the new doctoral fellowship program
offered by the Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB) of
India. Sharma also delivered a presentation on the SERB Fellowship
for interested faculty and students.
The SERB Fellowship provides funding support for up to five
outstanding Indian students admitted to UB doctoral programs in
STEM fields each year. UB was invited to participate for the first
time this year, and nominated 10 excellent students admitted to six
different doctoral programs at UB.