Mollendorf named SUNY Distinguished Teaching Professor


A revered scholar, teacher and mentor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Joseph C. Mollendorf has made pioneering contributions to the field of service learning by providing generations of students with invaluable opportunities to take part in groundbreaking research on assistive device technologies.

During his 40-year tenure as a UB faculty member, Mollendorf has led more than 700 students on 450 projects, developing devices that improve the quality of life for hundreds of people with disabilities and their families. These devices include a wheelchair-accessible  exercise  station, a bicycle designed for an amputee, a shoulder-steerable tricycle and more. He holds seven U.S. patents—five of which were earned through his work with his students.

Supervisor of the Engineering Machine Shop, Mollendorf is a recipient of the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching and is a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. He has amassed an impressive record of scholarship, including publishing more than 55 academic papers and 17 book chapters, and receiving more than $11 million in research grants, including 22 years of continuous National Science Foundation funding.

He received a doctorate and master’s degree in mechanical engineering from Cornell University, and a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Clarkson College of Technology.