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2016 Paul Simon Award Luncheon

Time: 12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Location: Meridian Ballroom, Morris University Center
* Attendance by invitation only

Click HERE to RSVP to the luncheon

The annual Paul Simon Luncheon honors the Paul Simon Outstanding Teacher-Scholar Awardees, their achievements in research, and the integration of that research into their teaching and mentoring. The award is named for the famed Illinois politician, Paul Simon, who served the state in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1975 - 1985 and in the U.S. Senate from 1985 - 1997. Senator Simon's commitment to education and democratic participation serves as inspiration for the commitment to excellence in scholarship and mentorship that is embodied in the Paul Simon Award.

Paul Simon

2016 Paul Simon Award Recipient

Presentations will acknowledge the 2016 Awardee Dr. Cristina De Meo, Professor in the Department of Chemistry.

About the Award and Awardees

The SIUE Paul Simon Outstanding Teacher-Scholar Award is presented to a faculty member in order to recognize the role of interdependence of research/scholarship and teaching. This highly competitive award confirms SIUE's belief that an individual must be a good scholar to be a good teacher. Winners of the Paul Simon award have demonstrated a significant contribution to their area of research or creative activity as well as a true commitment to the integration of that research with their teaching practices.

Speech by Dr. Ryan Fries, Professor in the Department of Civil Engineering

2015 Paul Simon Outstanding Teacher-Scholar

"Integrating Research and Teaching in the Area of Transportation Engineering"


Since joining the SIUE faculty in the year 2008, Dr. Fries has been a Principal Investigator (PI) or Co-PI on over $2 million externally funded grants and $50,000 in internal grants. All together, his research activities have led to 25 peer-reviewed journal publications, 23 conference proceedings, 27 professional presentations, and 5 government reports since joining SIUE. Among many notable projects, in 2012 Fries was selected as a PI to create an evacuation traffic management plan for the St. Louis Metro East region. During this project, he supported and mentored two Ph.D. students, four M.S. students, and three undergraduates. He more recently led a project aimed at guiding ICT/IDOT towards meeting new federal regulations about real-time traveler information.

He attended the American Society of Civil Engineers Excellence in Civil Engineering Education Teaching Workshop. Fries further-supported this continuous improvement by attending 18 teaching/pedagogy workshops at SIUE.  He participated in a project for the National Science Foundation focusing on increasing student retention rates in Engineering majors; four Excellence in Undergraduate Education projects that improved transportation engineering classes; and two projects from SIUE’s Senior Assignment Fund as a PI or Co-PI.

He has organized projects for 178 students at 35 different engineering companies or public agencies. He has also created laboratory experiences that are incorporated into classes. These experiences introduce traffic signals as well as demonstrate traffic conditions to students using a driving simulator. Fries wrote “Transportation Infrastructure Security Utilizing Intelligent Transportation Systems,” and the textbook is used in his graduate-level class, CE574.

At SIUE, Fries was named Outstanding Teacher in the Civil Engineering department in 2009 and 2013 as well as SIUE Teaching Recognition Award in 2012. Overall, Fries record of activities and accomplishments over the past years illustrates his continuous and high activity in research, an integration of research into his teaching, and a dedication to mentoring students.

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