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Press Release

SME Selects 4 as 2019 Distinguished Faculty Advisors

SME has selected four academic leaders to receive its 2019 Distinguished Faculty Advisor Award. This annual award, established in 2011, recognizes SME’s student chapter faculty advisors for both their service to the organization and ongoing efforts to advance manufacturing and its associated careers on their campuses and in their classrooms.

“Our student faculty advisors play an important role in showcasing how vital the manufacturing industry is and how the advanced technology landscape is constantly evolving,” said Karl Haapala, PhD, 2019 chair of SME’s Student Relations Committee and associate professor and Tom and Carmen West Faculty Scholar at Oregon State University. “They are key to filling the critical manufacturing workforce pipeline and building the network of professionals within SME.”

2019 Distinguished Faculty Advisors:

  • Wayne P. Hung, PhD, Associate Professor, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas
  • Sagil James, PhD, Assistant Professor, California State University, Fullerton, Fullerton, California
  • Simin Nasseri, PhD, Professor, Kennesaw State University, Marietta, Georgia
  • Rustin D. Webster, PhD, Assistant Professor, Purdue Polytechnic Institute, New Albany, Indiana

With over 70 student chapters located through the U.S. and in 16 other countries, the advisors are dedicated on-campus volunteers who work in conjunction with SME’s professional chapters to secure funding, provide continuing education opportunities, and develop and enhance the leadership skills of their student members.

“When a student chapter has an active, engaged faculty advisor, students flourish,” said Edye S. Buchanan, CMfgT, 2019 chair of the SME Member Council and a product manager at BriskHeat. “The work performed by our faculty advisors is essential to connecting our future workforce to careers in manufacturing.”

As part of their recognition, recipients receive a monetary award that can be used for professional and/or student chapter development/activities. To learn more, click here.

About SME
SME connects manufacturing professionals, academia and communities, sharing knowledge and resources to build inspired, educated and prosperous manufacturers and enterprises. With more than 87 years of experience and expertise in events, media, membership, training and development, and also through the SME Education Foundation, SME is committed to promoting manufacturing technology, developing a skilled workforce and attracting future generations to advance manufacturing. Learn more at, follow @SME_MFG on Twitter or


Dianna Helka
SME Public Relations