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Clarkson University Associate Professor Selma Mededovic Thagard Receives Graham Faculty Research Award

Selma Mededovic Thagard, an associate professor of chemical & biomolecular engineering in Clarkson University's Wallace H. Coulter School of Engineering, was awarded the John W. Graham Jr. Faculty Research Award during the University’s 123rd commencement ceremony today.

Graham Faculty Research AwardThe $1,500 research accounts are presented to "faculty members who have shown promise in engineering, business, liberal arts or scientific research."

Thagard's area of expertise is in electrical discharge plasma processes with a focus on theoretical and experimental investigations of fundamental plasma chemistry in single and multiphase plasma environments.
Her research group is pursuing multiple national and international interdisciplinary research projects, some of which include development and scale-up of chemical reactors for plasma-assisted water treatment, plasma sterilization and food decontamination, and plasma-assisted conversion of liquid fuels into hydrogen-rich gas. The plasma water treatment technology developed at Clarkson will soon be commercialized, she notes.

"I want to thank all the people who have influenced my research -- the Department of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering and the School of Engineering at Clarkson University -- for all their support. They truly have helped me to grow as a researcher," Thagard says. "I also would like to thank all my colleagues and collaborators here at Clarkson University who make it really easy to do good research."

Thagard credits her Ph.D. advisor, Professor Bruce Locke of Florida State University, for her success in research. "His mentoring style greatly influenced my mentoring style. He continues to be an influence on me even now," she says.

She has supervised six graduate students, more than 30 undergraduate students and five honors students on research projects. Clarkson undergraduate students are “gifted, superb researchers,” she adds.

Thagard has co-authored 30 articles in refereed journals, written three book chapters, and has three patents.
She is the recipient of the Tau Beta Pi Faculty Award, NSF BRIGE award, Kristin Craig Memorial Faculty Award, and the Omega Chi Epsilon “Professor of the Year” award. She has presented her work at numerous national and international meetings and has delivered more than 15 lectures as an invited speaker.

Thagard received her bachelor of science degree in chemical engineering from the University of Zagreb in Croatia and her Ph.D. in chemical engineering from Florida State University. Before coming to Clarkson, she held post-doctoral appointments at Toyohashi University of Technology in Japan and at Colorado State University.

Clarkson University educates the leaders of the global economy. One in five alumni already leads as an owner, CEO, VP or equivalent senior executive of a company. With its main campus located in Potsdam, New York, and additional graduate program and research facilities in the Capital Region and Beacon, N.Y., Clarkson is a nationally recognized research university with signature areas of academic excellence and research directed toward the world's pressing issues. Through more than 50 rigorous programs of study in engineering, business, arts, education, sciences and the health professions, the entire learning-living community spans boundaries across disciplines, nations and cultures to build powers of observation, challenge the status quo and connect discovery and innovation with enterprise.

Photo caption: Clarkson University President Tony Collins (right) presents the John W. Graham Jr. Faculty Research Award to Selma Mededovic Thagard.

[A photograph for media use is available at]

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Annie Harrison, Director of Media Relations, at 315-268-6764 or]

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