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April 17, 2008


NEW YORK, April 17, 2008 – Dr. Sheldon Weinbaum, CUNY Distinguished Research Professor of Biomedical and Mechanical Engineering in The Grove School of Engineering at The City College of New York (CCNY), will receive the 2008 Davies Medal, the highest honor given to an engineering alumnus by Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), his alma mater, Friday, April 18.

A member of RPI’s Class of 1959, Professor Weinbaum will be honored at a reception on that school’s campus in Troy, N.Y.  Afterwards, he will deliver a lecture: “Finding My Voice as a Scientist: A Personal Odyssey.”

Professor Weinbaum joined the CCNY faculty in 1967 and was instrumental in establishing The Grove School’s Department of Biomedical Engineering and the CUNY Ph.D. Program in Biomedical Engineering.  Although he retired from classroom teaching in 2007, he continues to advise students and conduct research at CCNY, supported by grants from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health.

He has published more than 200 full-length journal papers plus numerous shorter communications and book chapters.  His important collaborations with other researchers and their impacts include:

  • Studies with Dr. Shu Chein of University of California, San Diego, which led to discovery of the pore via which low-density lipoproteins (LDL) cross vascular endothelium and their subsequent spread in the subendothelium intima.
  • The Weinbaum-Jiji equation, developed with CCNY colleague Professor Latif Jiji, which describes microvascular blood-tissue heat transfer and a new model for heat transfer in muscle tissue.
  • Studies with CCNY colleague Distinguished Professor Stephen Cowin and Dr. Mitch Schaffler of Mount Sinai Medical School on bone fluid flow that led to important new hypotheses on how bone cells detect mechanical loading and transmit this to the intracellular cytoskeleton.
  • A new hypothesis for the mechanism causing vulnerable plaque rupture and thrombosis, the single largest cause of death from cardiovascular disease accounting for more than 300,000 deaths annually in the U.S.

Professor Weinbaum holds the distinction of being one of just seven living Americans elected to all three U.S. National Academies: Science, Engineering and Medicine.  Some other honors include a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2002, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers’ H. R. Lissner Award in 1994, a Melville Medal in 1996 and an NSF “Special Creativity” Award in 1985.  In addition to graduating from RPI, he holds a Ph.D. in Engineering and an M.S. in Applied Physics from Harvard University.

About the Davies Medal for Engineering Achievement

The Davies Medal, established in 1980 in honor of Clarence E. Davies, a member of RPI’s Class of 1914, is awarded biannually for distinguished engineering achievement to RPI alumni who meet one or more of the following criteria:

  • A distinguished career in engineering education.
  • Engineering achievement of benefit to mankind through its universal application.
  • Outstanding public service through an engineering profession.
  • Outstanding technical and managerial accomplishments in corporate or government engineering projects.
  • Recognition for important research projects, product design or construction in professional practice.

About The Grove School of Engineering at CCNY

The Grove School of Engineering at The City College of New York, formerly the CCNY School of Engineering, is the only public engineering school within New York City.  It offers Bachelors, Masters and Ph.D. degrees in seven fields: biomedical, chemical, civil, computer, electrical, and mechanical engineering and computer science.  The School is recognized nationally for the excellence of its instructional and research programs and ranks among the most diverse engineering schools in the country.  On November 28, 2005, the CUNY Board of Trustees named the School in honor of Dr. Andrew S. Grove, a member of the CCNY Class of 1960, and a co-founder and former chairman of Intel Corp., the world’s leading producer of microprocessors.  For additional information, visit www1.ccny.cuny.edu/prospective/engineering.

About The City College of New York

For more than 160 years, The City College of New York has provided low-cost, high-quality education for New Yorkers in a wide variety of disciplines.  Over 14,000 students pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; The School of Architecture, Urban Design and Landscape Architecture (SAUDLA); The School of Education; The Grove School of Engineering, and The Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education.  For additional information, visit www.ccny.cuny.edu.