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Press Release

SME Names 2019 Class of Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineers

Today, SME announced that it has recognized 14 young professionals with its Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer Award. These up-and-coming manufacturing engineers, age 35 or younger, have made significant technological and process improvement advancements across a variety of industries, including healthcare, automotive, aerospace, energy and mining.

“We’re proud to recognize these young professionals for all their achievements and continued advancements in manufacturing,” said Sandra L. Bouckley, FSME, P.Eng., SME executive director and CEO. “Their cutting-edge breakthroughs illustrate the infinite possibilities available to young people pursuing an education or career in manufacturing.”

2019 Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineers:

  • Amy Alexander, Senior Biomedical Engineer, Anatomic Modeling Laboratory, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota

  • Weilong “Ben” Cong, PhD, Assistant Professor, Industrial, Manufacturing, & Systems Engineering, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas

  • Omar Fergani, PhD, Senior Product Engineer, Siemens Digital Factory, Berlin

  • Weihong “Grace” Guo, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Piscataway, New Jersey

  • Stephanie Locks-Hartle, Mechanical and Systems Engineer, Future Technical Leaders Program, Northrop Grumman Corp., Baltimore

  • Parash Kalita, PhD, Product Development Manager, NanoMech Inc., Springdale, Arkansas

  • Kaibo Liu, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, Wisconsin

  • Matthew E. Lynch, PhD, Staff Research Engineer, United Technologies Research Center, East Hartford, Connecticut

  • Alex Meyer, Manufacturing Engineering Manager, Caterpillar Surface Mining & Technology Division, Milwaukee

  • Teresa Rinker, PhD, Senior Researcher, Manufacturing Systems Research Lab, General Motors Research & Development, Warren, Michigan

  • Chenhui Shao, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Champaign, Illinois

  • Wenzhuo Wu, PhD, Ravi and Eleanor Talwar Rising Star Assistant Professor, School of Industrial Engineering, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana

  • Cunjiang Yu, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Houston, Houston

  • Wenyang Zhang, PhD, Staff Mechanical Design Engineer, Tesla Inc., Palo Alto, California

Each year, SME honors a longtime member and manufacturing professional for their career achievements by naming the Outstanding Young Manufacturing Award after them. The 2019 namesake, Barbara M. Fossum, PhD, FSME, a retired consultant and former senior research fellow at the University of Texas at Austin, served as SME president in 2010.

Nominations for the 2020 Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer Award should be submitted by Aug. 1. Visit for submission and additional award details.