Michigan Aerospace is proud to recognize our staff and faculty who received College of Engineering and Aerospace Department Awards this year.
Kimberly Johnson, the Communications and Outreach Specialist for the Aerospace Department, is one of two Aerospace Department recipients of the College of Engineering Staff Incentive Program Award. Under her leadership as Chair of the Aero Outreach Committee, the department has undergone one of the most robust periods of outreach growth in recent memory. Facilitating a multitude of outreach programs involving local youth and the aerospace community at large, Kimberly has greatly expanded the visibility of the department. Such events include planning visits to the Aero facilities from Marygrove High School and Davis Aerospace Technical High School students. The importance of these outreach programs to attract a diverse community of talented students to the Aerospace Department as well as the College of Engineering as a whole cannot be understated.
Jessica Jones is the second recipient of the Staff Incentive Program Award. In her role as Human Resources Generalist, she never fails to bring the utmost dedication to her work in human resources and commitment to DEI initiatives. A model team player and collaborator, she has put forth great effort in continuing to implement our department onboarding practices and diversifying candidate pools. Jessica played a key role in Aerospace’s first ever MLK symposium event, specifically bringing the documentary film, “Me, the ‘Other,’” to the attention of the department. We can always count on Jess to be approachable, respectful, and helpful to all, as she goes above and beyond to ensure a welcoming, friendly environment. We thank Jessica for being a model representative of the values and culture of the department.
Kristin Parrish, Research Administration Manager, received the annual Mart Stenzel Staff Dedication Award from the Aerospace Engineering Department. Kristin is an extremely diligent member of our staff with outstanding leadership ability and a knack for thriving in team environments. Routinely seeking the input of all members of her team, she never fails to recognize the value that each individual brings to the table. Additionally, Kristin’s work as an administrator has allowed Aerospace to become one of the most compliant departments in the view of Sponsored Programs. Many Aero staff and faculty members credit her for enabling smooth transitions into their current positions, as she has a talent for making complex processes more palatable. Without fail, Kristin has shown time and time again that she is an invaluable member of the Aerospace Engineering Department.
Anouck Girard, Associate Professor of Aerospace Engineering, was selected for the College of Engineering Faculty Incentive Program Award for her extensive pre-K12 outreach efforts, making great strides in spreading the visibility of the program to local youth. One of Anouck’s specialties is crafting creative innovations in the field of Aerospace education. She brought the Harry Potter game Quadcopter Quidditch to life via drones, hosting 750 participants in the span of two years. Going with the Harry Potter theme, she also created a captivating Wizarding-World-themed math curriculum for elementary schools, and lastly, invented a program for high school students – co-taught with CLASP – in which student-built rovers compete to finish a complex, pitfall-laced maze. Anouck has never been one to turn away a child who wants to learn about aerospace engineering. She hopes to continue teaching the next generation of engineers (and their parents) through fun and engaging ways locally and abroad.
The Aerospace Engineering Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Impact Award was given to Ken Powell, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor of Aerospace. Ken has done outstanding work as the Chair of the Aerospace DEI Committee cultivating a culture of inclusion within the Aerospace Department. As a five-year STRIDE board member, he provided information and advice about practices to help identify diverse, well-qualified candidates for faculty positions at the University. Ken is very involved in DEI efforts on campus, including being on the board of ADVANCE, the College of Engineering faculty representative to President Schlissel’s Sexual Misconduct Working Group, and the board of the M-STEM academies.