by Jane Stoyle Welch
Published March 10, 2020
Mohammed Safiuddin, president of STS International and a long-time teacher in the University at Buffalo’s Department of Electrical Engineering, was named Engineer of the Year by the UB Engineering and Applied Sciences Alumni Association.
Each year, the award goes to a school alumnus or closely affiliated person with distinguishing activities in alumni, community, business and professional affairs.
Safiuddin, who earned his PhD in electrical and computer engineering in 1982, has impacted a generation of UB engineering students through his research and teaching, where he focused on connecting classroom instruction to the real world of industry and business.
The Engineer of the Year award is presented during Engineers Week, in conjunction with the Order of the Engineer Induction Ceremony and Pledge of the Computing Professional Oath Ceremony.
All seniors in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences are invited to participate in the event, which focuses on professionalism, and promotes ethical and moral behavior of engineers and computing professionals as they transition to careers of service to society.
In keeping with the theme of event, Safiuddin explained that engineers must exemplify the value of integrity, adhere to the facts, and speak the truth.
“Our work as engineers affects what I call the three Ps – People, Planet and Profit,” says Safiuddin. “To do right by ourselves and our profession, we should all be committed to serving people and our planet, and ensuring no harm to them. When we look after these two “Ps”, then we will find sustainable profit and prosperity for all.”
Safiuddin started his career as a junior engineer at Andhra Pradesh State Electricity Board in India in 1958. He joined the Systems Control Department at Westinghouse Electric in Buffalo, N.Y. two years later as an associate engineer and progressed through the ranks of engineer, senior engineer, and fellow engineer to manager of the Product/Strategic Planning, Power Electronics and Drive Systems Division in 1982, and on to technical advisor in the Marketing Department in 1984.
During his career at Westinghouse, over a dozen of his projects were recognized as “First of its Kind” in the world. One of his projects was designated as one of the top ten “Engineering Achievements for 1977” by the National Society of Professional Engineers and the Society of Civil Engineers. He received ten U.S. patents for his innovative control system designs.
He established STS International, a technology service firm, in 1985, as Westinghouse ceased its operations in Buffalo.
His interests in continuing education kept him in close contact with the University at Buffalo, where he taught part-time in the early sixties, was an adjunct associate professor from 1977-1991 and then a research professor from 1991-2010. He is currently a research professor Emeritus in the Department of Electrical Engineering.
His areas of technical interests cover static power conversion and optimal control systems as applied to industrial processes, renewable energy, and Smart Grid power systems. He has authored dozens of technical papers and conference presentations.
Safiuddin is a Life Fellow (1993) of the IEEE. He was awarded the Roscoe Allen Gold Medal in 1957 by Osmania University. In 1992, he was also the recipient of "IUSD Award of Merit" by the IEEE-Industry Applications Society for his contributions to industrial control technologies, and service to the IAS. He was recognized for his meritorious achievement in continuing education by the IEEE-EAB award for the year 2000.
He is a member of the Pi Mu Epsilon (Mathematics) and Beta Gamma Sigma (Business) honor societies, and is an "Eminent Engineer" member of Tau Beta Pi. He was nominated for the prestigious IEEE Education medal in 2018 and was recognized with International Business and Academic Excellence 2019 “Distinguished Educator Award” in 2019 by the GISR Foundation and American College in Dubai.
Approximately 275 SEAS students, faculty and staff, members of the UB Engineering and Applied Sciences Alumni Association, NYS Society of Professional Engineering and Technical Societies Council, and family and friends attended the event, which was held on February 18, 2020, in Slee Hall.