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Fifth Annual Innovation of the Year Awards Division of Research & Economic Development

Advancements, Invention and Discovery Recognized at Morgan’s Fifth Annual Innovation of the Year Awards

by Morgan State U
January 11, 2023

At Morgan State University, Leadership, Innovation and Excellence are three of the six core values the Morgan community proudly upholds. In an effort to recognize outstanding examples of these values demonstrated each year on Morgan’s campus, the Office of Technology Transfer (OTT) hosts an annual Innovation of the Year awards ceremony. This year marked the fifth iteration of the event, which celebrates the noteworthy accomplishments made by faculty, staff and students that have resulted in numerous intellectual property disclosures, start-up companies, U.S. patent applications and U.S. patents issued.

As in past ceremonies, awards were given out for intellectual property innovations in the Life Science, Physical Science and Information Science categories. Faculty, staff and students were also recognized through the Morgan community innovator categories of Instructional Innovator of the Year, Staff Innovator of the Year and Student Innovator of the Year. In recognition of OTT’s hosting of its fifth awards ceremony, a special one-time awards category was added to honor the innovators who have received the most distinction since the award ceremony’s inception.

Fifth Annual Innovation of the Year Awards

The 2022 Innovation of the Year award winners include the following:

Intellectual Property Innovation Award

Individuals who have created outstanding innovations in their research fields during the past year are recognized with this award.

Fifth Annual Innovation of the Year AwardsPhysical Science Awardees (TIE)

  • Integrated Automated Wheelchair and Adapted Automated Vehicle System
    Dr. Mansoureh Jeihani, Dr. Kofi Nyarko, Dr. Eazaz Sadeghvaziri, Dr. Anam Ardeshiri
    (School of Engineering)

    This invention integrates two modes of travel with Automated Vehicle (AV) technology. An Automated Wheelchair (AW) enables people with multiple types of disabilities to make short distance trips independently. The AW is aimed to be programmable to navigate its destination through the best route with minimal intervention. An Adapted Automated Vehicle (AAV) will enable people with disabilities to make long-distance trips.

  • Carbon Nanotube Magnetic Sensor to Monitor Heavy Metals in Water
    Dr. Dereje Seifu
    (School of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences)

    This technology can detect heavy metals in tiny amounts from a contaminated water source. Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) intercalated with magnetic nanoparticles of cobalt ferrite are used for detection, identification and quantitation of chromium by observing changes in the magnetic properties of the composite.


Information Science Awardee

  • Detection and Survival Method against Adversarial Attacks on Automated Systems
    Dr. Kevin Kornegay, Dr. Tsion Yimer, Edmund Smith
    (School of Engineering)

    The inventors have developed a new technique that employs measurements previously not utilized for security purposes to detect anomalies between operational and hidden sensors and introduces a mitigation strategy to use in hidden sensors to respond to attacks. Automated systems may include those that are a part of a greater Internet of Things (IoT) system and can include automated driving systems and controls on numerous types of devices.


Life Science Awardee

  • Accurate Sickle Cell Detection Method Using Deep Transfer Learning
    Dr. Md Mahmudur Rahman
    (School of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences)

    This invention focuses on recognizing visual patterns in blood smear images by applying Deep Transfer Learning with three pre-trained models to detect sickle cell disease. The models are compared to determine the highest score of prediction and accuracy.

Morgan Community Innovator Award

Presented to faculty, staff and students, this award distinguishes those who have contributed to Morgan’s innovation landscape.

Instructional Innovator of the Year

Dr. Kimberly Warren
(College of Liberal Arts / Psychology Department)

Fifth Annual Innovation of the Year Awards

Dr. Warren is a professor in the Psychology Department of the College of Liberal Arts. She developed a Global Health service-learning study abroad program for her students. This program, which takes place in Guatemala, involves a short-term (eight–nine-day) trip during which students live with a host family, participate in one-on-one Spanish lessons, provide free health services to the community and participate in cultural activities. Students not traveling abroad are also involved through study-at-home interactions.

Staff Innovator of the Year

Maia Maclin
(Enrollment Management and Student Success / Office of the Registrar)

Ms. Maclin serves as the operations manager in the Office of the Registrar. To improve efficiency and output of her team, she developed and implemented the Hiver email management system. The system auto-assigns every incoming email to a shared inbox. The system manages inquiries and evenly distributes workload among the team.


Student Innovator of the Year

Samuel Oludayo Alamu
(Industrial and Systems Engineering)

Samuel Oludayo Alamu is a doctoral student in the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering. He is named as a co-inventor on six intellectual property disclosures, based on his efforts to increase bioenergy production through thermochemical processes. He has also made contributions to the development of the combustion technology licensed by Cykloburn Technologies, LLC.

Fifth Annual Innovation of the Year Awards

Innovation Leader Honorees

The individuals recognized as Innovation Leaders are the inventors who have set the standard among their colleagues and peers and have taken innovation and experiential learning opportunities for their students to new heights. The following individuals were selected for this special honor, based on their past Innovation of the Year success in addition to student support in the form of personal videos, anecdotes and examples, submitted for consideration:

Information Science Innovation Leader – Dr. Kofi Nyarko

Life Science Innovation LeaderDr. Viji Sitther

Physical Science Innovation LeaderDr. Seong Lee

U.S. Patent Awardees

These innovation awards are presented to Morgan inventors who have been issued a U.S. patent from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office during the previous year.

  • Adaptive Energy Efficient Cellular Network
    U.S. Patent No. 11,240,752
    Dr. Kevin Kornegay, Dr. Hailu Kassa

  • Composition and Method for Enhancing Photosynthetic Efficiency of Microorganisms
    U.S. Patent No. 11,162,067
    Dr. Viji Sitther, Dr. Benham Tabatabai, Dr. Kadir Aslan

Established as a unit within the Division of Research and Economic Development, the MSU Office of Technology Transfer (OTT) safeguards the interests of the University and its personnel in matters relating to intellectual property and technology transfer. The OTT is responsible for the recording of Intellectual Property Disclosures; the assessment, marketing and licensing of University intellectual property; the protection of intellectual property (IP), including filing patent applications; and assuring the proper allocation and distribution of related revenue. Since its launch, the OTT has worked tirelessly to highlight innovators who have made significant contributions to their fields.