Professor earns national mechanics engineering honor

By University Communications
May 8, 2017
Associate Professor Devin Berg works with student Sarah Dillon in a manufacturing engineering lab in Fryklund Hall.

Photo: Associate Professor Devin Berg works with student Sarah Dillon
in a manufacturing engineering lab in Fryklund Hall.

A engineering professor at University of Wisconsin-Stout has been recognized nationally for his contributions to the field as an educator.

Associate Professor Devin Berg is a recipient of the Ferdinand P. Beer and E. Russell Johnston Jr. Outstanding New Mechanics Educator Award sponsored by the American Society for Engineering Education.

Berg will accept the award at the ASEE’s annual conference in June in Columbus, Ohio.

The award recognizes professors of five years or less who are committed to mechanics education. Berg has taught at UW-Stout since 2012 and is the mechanical engineering undergraduate program director.

Devin BergBerg stresses applied learning in his classes. “With each course I lead, I commit to including a hands-on course project in which students demonstrate and interpret the fundamental mechanics theory found in everyday objects,” he said. “This helps students see the value of their engineering science courses by making a strong connection to the applications found in the world around them.”

He also requires students to write about their findings and present their work at departmental, college and university venues. “This gives us the opportunity to practice the writing and public speaking skills that will be critical in their careers while taking a core engineering science course,” he said.

He helped create the mechanical engineering program and has developed some of the program’s curriculum, including the Impacts of Engineering course “to bring engineering design to freshmen and a general education audience,” he said.

He recently received a College Collaboration Grant from Stout University Foundation to incorporate assistive technology design in the Impacts of Engineering course.

Chuck Bomar, dean of the College of Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Management, said Berg is an accomplished instructor in mechanics.

“Dr. Berg’s performance in the classroom is evident in his student evaluations where students commonly evaluate him as not only one of the top instructors in the department but one of the best instructors on campus,” Bomar said.

Berg, an Altoona native, has three mechanical engineering degrees: a bachelor’s from UW-Madison and a master’s and doctorate from the University of Minnesota.

He is part of two ongoing National Science Foundation grants at UW-Stout, one involving the study of service learning projects such as Engineers Without Borders USA and another involving robotics and control systems. The latter is a summer NSF REU, research experience for undergraduates, on campus.



Bottom Photo: Devin Berg