Jacobs, Ugaz honored with University Professorships for Undergraduate Teaching Excellence

Dr. Timothy Jacobs and Dr. Victor Ugaz, professors in the Dwight Look College of Engineering at Texas A&M University, were both honored with University Professorships for Undergraduate Teaching Excellence (UPUTE).

Jacobs is the Steve Brauer, Jr. ’02 Faculty Fellow and undergraduate program director in the Department of Mechanical Engineering.

Jacobs And UgazUgaz is the holder of the Charles D. Holland ’53 Professorship, associate department head and director of the undergraduate program in the Artie McFerrin Department of Chemical Engineering.

The professors were recognized during the university’s Undergraduate Convocation on Aug. 30. The award is conferred only upon the university’s most distinguished teachers of undergraduates — faculty who have exhibited uncommon excellence and devotion to the education of undergraduate students.

“Texas A&M University strives to meet our unique mission for Texas by supporting and recognizing our faculty’s outstanding efforts in teaching, research and service,” said Karan Watson, provost and executive vice president. “These University Professorships acknowledge the particular expertise these faculty hold in working with our undergraduate students, as they become the future productive citizens of Texas and beyond.”

The professorships are made possible through generous endowments by George and Irma Eppright, Melburn G. Glasscock, and Arthur and Wilhelmina Doré Thaman.

Jacobs earned his Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of Michigan. His teaching interests include thermodynamics, internal combustion engines and experimental methods. He is currently involved in a major redesign of the content and structure for the first course on thermodynamics that will improve students’ understanding of entropy and available energy.

Jacobs has received numerous teaching and research awards including the Montague/CTE Scholars Award, the John Weese Award for Excellence in Teaching from the Texas A&M chapter of Pi Tau Sigma, the Peggy L. and Charles L. Brittan Teaching Award for Outstanding Teaching and the Ralph R. Teetor Educational Award from SAE International, and the Texas A&M University Association of Former Students Distinguished Achievement Award for Teaching.

Ugaz earned his Ph.D. in chemical engineering from Northwestern University. His teaching efforts have been recognized by a number of award including the Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award, the Tenneco Meritorious Teaching Award, the Celanese Teaching Excellence Award, and the Departmental Professor of the Year Award from the student chapter of the American Institute for Chemical Engineers and a Texas A&M University Association of Former Students Distinguished Achievement Award for Teaching.

Ugaz’s passion for teaching and mentoring is a reflection of his ability to communicate with students. He is known for incorporating innovative educational experiences in the classroom and is always working to introduce new examples from current scientific research, including his own.