HOUSTON, Jan. 10, 2008 -- Rice University bioengineer Jennifer West is being recognized today with one of the Lone Star State's highest scientific honors, the O'Donnell Award from The Academy of Medicine, Engineering and Science of Texas (TAMEST).
The O'Donnell Awards, given for excellence in medical, scientific and engineering research, include a $25,000 honorarium, a citation and an inscribed statue. West, a pioneer in the field of biomaterials engineering, will receive the O'Donnell Award for engineering today at the academy's annual conference in Houston. She is being honored "for advancing the fields of tissue engineering and bionanotechnology leading to life- saving medical products, for cutting-edge research in basic cell and molecular bioengineering, for leadership in bioengineering education and for excellence in teaching and mentoring."
West is the Isabel C. Cameron Professor of Bioengineering and director of Rice's Institute of Biosciences and Bioengineering.
"Jennifer West is simply one of the most extraordinary young academics in America, and both Rice and Texas are fortunate to have her here," said Rice President David Leebron. "She excels in contributing to every aspect of our mission: research, teaching and service. Her contributions to scientific knowledge are poised to produce important benefits to humanity. TAMEST could not have chosen a more worthy recipient for the ODonnell Award."
West joined Rice in 1996. Her research in two of bioengineerings most competitive fields -- nanotechnology and tissue engineering -- has earned honors that include recognition as a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professor in 2006, the Christopher Columbus Fellowship Foundation's 2004 Annunzio Award, Nanotechnology Now's "Best Discovery of 2003" and recognition in Technology Review magazine's 100 Top Young Innovators list.
Wests research focuses on the synthesis, development and application of novel biomaterials and in
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