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By Carolyn Farrell

Congratulations to ECE Professors Frank Kschischang and Safwat Zaky, who have been honoured by the University of Toronto Alumni Association with 2010 Awards of Excellence.  Professor Kschischang received the Faculty Award, recognizing excellence in teaching, research, and professional endeavours. Professor Zaky is this year’s recipient of the Vivek Goel Faculty Citizenship Award, given to a faculty member who has served the University with distinction in multiple leadership capacities. This is the second year in a row that Engineering professors have received these two prestigious awards.

A Tier One Canada Research Chair in Communication Algorithms, Frank Kschischang is an internationally renowned researcher in the field of information theory.  A popular and accomplished teacher, he has received several departmental teaching awards, as well as the Faculty Teaching Award in 2006. He spearheaded the development of ECE’s new “flexible curriculum” and received their Departmental Service Award in 2007 in recognition of this initiative.  Professor Kschischang is a Fellow of the Engineering Institute of Canada and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), and a recipient of the Premier’s Research Excellence Award. He was recently elected President of the IEEE Information Theory Society.

Safwat Zaky recently completed a six-year term as Vice-Provost, Planning and Budget, during which he helped define and lead the implementation of a new, more transparent budget model which changed academic and financial planning in the University in a fundamental way.  Professor Zaky also served as Chair of ECE from 1993-2003, spearheading a major curriculum redevelopment as well as a highly successful fundraising campaign. In this role he developed strong ties with major industry leaders such as Nortel and Bell, resulting in some of Canada’s first university-industry research partnerships. He has represented U of T with distinction on a number of external organizations, and was the founding President of the Canadian Heads of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

“I am delighted that the University of Toronto has recognized the achievements of these two extraordinary members of our community,” said Cristina Amon, Dean, Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering. “Professors Kschischang and Zaky truly embody the values of excellence, dedication and service that the University stands for.”

The 2010 Awards of Excellence recipients will be honoured at a ceremony on Monday, May 3 in Hart House.

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