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11-06-2013

Clarkson University Educator Shares Expertise

Professor Richard Partch has been teaching at Clarkson University since 1965, but it's not at all unusual to find him working with a group of teens, teachers, manufacturers or elderhostel participants. In fact, this senior university professor with the Clarkson's Center for Advanced Materials Processing (CAMP) has made three presentations in as many months to share his academic expertise.

Professor Richard PartchHis work at CAMP involves cutting-edge technology that touches everyday aspects of most people's lives -- computer chips, heat/energy control, medicine, and wind impacts, to name a few. Part of his job is to share that knowledge.

“The wall of the CAMP atrium features our Wallace H. Coulter School of Engineering motto 'Technology Serving Humanity' and with our State funding comes the responsibility to bring information on technology to local tech businesses,” says Partch.

It's a mission he clearly embraces. On November 5, he was in Rochester, N.Y., at the 2013 Annual Science Teachers Association meeting, where he gave an invited presentation on "Nanotechnology Solutions for Cancer and Drug Overdoses." This is an ongoing research area in his University laboratory in collaboration with Biology Professor Craig Woodworth.

“I was invited to present to this group a few years ago. My overall message has always been 'Chemistry is more than fireworks and magic shows,' ” Partch says.

On October 4, he represented Clarkson at the St. Lawrence County National Manufacturers Day event organized by NNY CITEC. Regional pre-college teachers, school counselors and some students in tech prep programs attended. Spokespersons from area industries Alcoa, Ansen, Corning and Curran made presentations. Partch discussed the diverse technology research and development opportunities in engineering, math and science at Clarkson.

“I spoke about how R&D is the first step in a manufacturing process and that no successful person in manufacturing achieves by working alone but that teamwork is essential. I want the students to know they will never succeed if they think they will work in a vacuum,” the professor emphasizes.

He underscores the same point in his popular on-campus eight-week summer laboratory research program for rising high school seniors. He aims to “enhance their understanding of how technology evolves from collaboration with others and the intellectual rewards of being a scientist.”

In September, he mingled with fellow scientists for two weeks in Spain. He was an invited guest at the EDIBON Company in Madrid and was an invited speaker and session chair at the three-day 2013 International NANOSMAT Conference in Granada. In a small-world coincidence, he was happy to reconnect with former Clarkson research associates Manuel Ocana and Luis Perez at the Instituto de Sciencia de Materiales de Sevilla.

“These conferences offer the opportunity to meet an interesting cadre of people,” he says.

Clarkson University launches leaders into the global economy. One in five alumni already leads as a CEO, VP or equivalent senior executive of a company. Located just outside the Adirondack Park in Potsdam, N.Y., Clarkson is a nationally recognized research university for undergraduates with select graduate programs in signature areas of academic excellence directed toward the world's pressing issues. Through 50 rigorous programs of study in engineering, business, arts, sciences and health sciences, 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 engineering innovation with enterprise.

[A photograph for media use is available at http://www.clarkson.edu/news/photos/partch.jpg .]

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Michael P. Griffin, director of News & Digital Content Services, at 315-268-6716 or mgriffin@clarkson.edu.]

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