The Frontiers of Engineering program brings together through 2-1/2 day meetings a select group of emerging engineering leaders from industry, academe, and government labs to discuss pioneering technical work and leading edge research in various engineering fields and industry sectors. The goal of the meetings is to introduce these outstanding engineers (ages 30-45) to each other, and through this interaction facilitate collaboration in engineering, the transfer of new techniques and approaches across fields, and establishment of contacts among the next generation of engineering leaders.


  • José Leboreiro
    Research Engineer
    Archer Daniels Midland

    My areas of research include development and optimization of chemical processes for the production of biofuels and renewable chemicals to improve sustainability while maintaining economic feasibility.

    The FOE has opened doors that otherwise would have been unavailable. I had the opportunity to collaborate with participants from the US and Brazil. Furthermore, the interaction with members of the National Academy of Engineering has been energizing.  

  • Judy Cha
    Assistant Professor, Materials Engineering
    Yale University

    My research focuses on discovering novel electrical properties by designing new materials at the nanoscale for potential electronic and energy applications.

    Attending USFOE 2015 was very valuable in meeting young engineers from diverse fields, establishing new collaboration opportunities, and being exposed to exciting topics that I wouldn’t normally think about.

  • Timothy Ombrello
    Senior Research Aerospace Engineer
    Air Force Research Laboratory

    I work on basic and applied research related to high-speed air-breathing propulsion systems, specifically supersonic combustion ramjets for hypersonic propulsion applications. 

    FOE provided me with a great learning experience about research in areas that are outside of my normal purview. The connections with other engineers stimulated new ideas and established future collaborations to enhance my work.

  • David Parkes
    Area Dean for Computer Science & Engineering
    Harvard University

    My research occurs at the interfaces between economics and computer science, with a focus on electronic commerce, artificial intelligence, and data science. 

    My lasting memory from FOE is the wonderful feeling of being part of an energetic community of engineers that can discuss challenging problems and collectively work together to identify, iterate, and understand possible solutions. Upon returning to campus, I found that I could engage my engineering colleagues with a renewed appreciation of their research. I especially enjoyed learning about challenges in deploying structures in space, and in building incredibly light and strong metamaterials. 

  • Erin Spinner
    Biomedical Research Engineer, Advanced Technologies
    Edwards Lifesciences

    My focus is on translational research and innovative heart valve device development from design ideas to first-in-man trials. This includes leveraging noninvasive imaging techniques to better understand the disease and to guide device implantation.

    Participating in the FOE has encouraged me to look to other fields for creative and innovative solutions in my own work. It is incredibly invigorating to connect and network with engineers who are passionate and excited about pushing the boundaries of human capabilities.

  • Barbara Linke
    Assistant Professor, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
    University of California, Davis

    Our research focuses on sustainable and energy-efficient manufacturing processes, especially ultra-high speed micro-machining, high-quality surface finishing, and hygienic food processing equipment.

    The symposium made me proud to be an engineer who has a positive impact on the world and society. I was especially thrilled to have this opportunity early in my career.