“To be selected the inaugural fellowship recipient is a tremendous honor for me,” said Lollar. “I’ve really enjoyed the time I’ve had here at UT so far, and I’m thankful to have been able to do undergraduate research under Belle Upadhyaya.”
Lollar’s research in graduate school will be directed toward nuclear power plant instrumentation and control, as well as monitoring issues.
“I plan to study the same things in graduate school that AMS is known for doing so well,” said Lollar. “It will be a great experience to learn from their engineers and to work on cutting-edge research projects.”
“AMS has been a valued partner of our department since their inception,” said Department of Nuclear Engineering head Wes Hines. “They have supported us in a number of key ways, including research funding, employment of students, and even bringing engineering practice into our classes through lectures from Adjunct Professor Hash Hashemian.”
Knoxville-based AMS was co-founded in 1977 by Hashemian, a UT nuclear engineering alumnus, and former nuclear engineering department head Tom Kerlin to help various aspects of the nuclear power industry, from testing to troubleshooting.
“We’re involved in every nuclear power plant in the United States,” said Hashemian. “Being able to partner with UT and to give students real-world knowledge and even experience is something that can’t be measured.”
For Hashemian, the opportunity to help his alma mater came naturally.
“I’ve been involved with UT and with every department head for nuclear engineering since [Pietro] Pasqua, the first one,” said Hashemian. “The energy Hines has is contagious. He really makes me want to be involved in any way I can.”
The new fellowship adds to a string of recent successes for the department.
Among other highlights, US News and World Report named its graduate program the fourth-best in the country among public universities in March. Then, just last month, the department signed an agreement with Czech Technical University in Prague that opens up sharing ideas, research, even visits from faculty and students.
“By supporting a student through the last year of graduate school, this grant is another recognition of the good work that the people in our department are doing,” said Hines. “Corporate investments in our program such as this enable our department to raise its prestige in our drive toward being the best one it can be.”