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AWI Names Second Class of Faculty Fellowship Recipients

Professional headshots of three professors in a collage.
The 2022 AWI Faculty Fellows are Dr. Gregory Starr, left, Dr. Hamed Moftakhari, top right, and Dr. Matthew VanDyke, bottom right.

The Alabama Water Institute has selected three faculty members from The University of Alabama to serve as 2022-25 fellows in the AWI Faculty Fellowship Program.

The program recognizes UA faculty for outstanding research, extension and education programs that significantly advance UA’s interdisciplinary water-related communities of science.

The 2022 Early Career AWI Faculty Fellows include:

  • Hamed Moftakhari, assistant professor of civil, construction and environmental engineering, College of Engineering.
  • Matthew VanDyke, associate professor of advertising and public relations, College of Communication and Information Sciences.

The 2022 Distinguished AWI Faculty Fellow includes:

  • Gregory Starr, professor of biological sciences, College of Arts and Sciences.

“These AWI Fellows exemplify the depth and quality of our faculty at The University of Alabama, as well as the research they conduct,” said Scott Rayder, AWI executive director. “I am excited to work with these new fellows who will be terrific ambassadors for water research here in Alabama and beyond.”

Two Early Career and one Distinguished Faculty Fellowships are awarded each year by AWI to candidates affiliated with the institute. Each fellowship has a tenure of three academic years and is accompanied by an annual salary stipend.

Selected fellows have shown evidence of strong interdisciplinary, water-related research, education and extension programs. Their research, education and extension priorities align with AWI’s mission to both carry out cutting-edge and applied research and to train the next generation of scientists to provide actionable, novel solutions for a more water-secure world.

AWI Faculty Fellows serve as representatives committed to contribute to AWI’s initiatives during their term and help promote the institute across UA, its partners and to the public. AWI Faculty Fellows also increase the visibility and impact of the institute by participating in its monthly talk series and by submitting two interdisciplinary AWI proposals.

The creation of the AWI demonstrated the commitment of UA to be a premier research and education institution around water-related issues. AWI’s goal is to become a world-class interdisciplinary water research institute that develops pathbreaking, holistic and environmentally friendly solutions to ensure people and ecological systems in our community, state, nation and around the world have access to clean water and are resilient to extreme events.

AWI Faculty Fellows collectively provide a community of science to the UA campus that can respond to multiple interdisciplinary research opportunities and build a portfolio of projects and initiatives that benefit not only the University, but all of society.

A version of this story by Brock Parker was originally published by the Alabama Water Institute.