A pair of Texas Engineers have been elected fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the world’s largest general scientific society.

Diana Marculescu and Pengyu Ren are part of a class of six 2022 AAAS fellows from The University of Texas at Austin. The honor recognizes important contributions to the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics — including pioneering research, leadership within a given field, teaching and mentoring, fostering collaborations, and advancing public understanding of science.

“I am tremendously proud of our newly elected AAAS fellows,” said Daniel Jaffe, vice president for research at UT Austin. “They join an exclusive group of scientists and engineers nationwide, based on their significant contributions to STEM research. Having so many high-performing scholars at UT Austin underlines the impact of the institution and enriches the quality of both the research and our teaching.”

Other UT Austin AAAS fellows hail from the College of Natural Sciences and the School of Information. The new fellows join more than 49 colleagues at the university who have earned the lifetime distinction. Nationally, AAAS elected 505 new fellows this year.

2020 Marculescu Diana

Diana Marculescu is the department chair and holds the Cockrell Family Chair for Engineering Leadership and the Motorola Regents Chair of the Chandra Family Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. She is the founding director of the Intelligent Machine Engineering Consortium at UT, an industry-university partnership in the area of machine learning and systems, and she leads the Energy-Aware Computing Group, a group that aims to bring computational efficiency to applications with high societal impact. Her work encompasses energy- and reliability-aware computing, hardware-aware machine learning and computing for sustainability and natural science applications.

“I am honored to join so many accomplished colleagues as an AAAS Fellow,” Marculescu said. “AAAS Fellows have always represented tremendous contributors to every scientific discipline, and it is humbling to be included among them.”

Ren Pengyu

Pengyu Ren is a biomedical engineering professor and holds the E.C.H. Bantel Professorship for Professional Practice. His work uses computational biology and molecular modeling that integrates scientific computing, chemistry, physics and biology for pharmaceutical and biomedical applications. His work seeks to engineer novel molecules, from small organic molecules to proteins and nucleic acids, with controlled structure and function for therapeutic and diagnostic purposes.

“I am honored to be recognized by AAAS, fellow scientists, and engineers. To me it is a recognition of decades of collective work by me, my students, and my coworkers,” said Ren.

The new fellows will be featured in the AAAS News & Notes section of the February issue of Science and will be honored at a ceremony in Washington, D.C., this summer.