Francis named 3M Chair in Experiential Learning

Sept. 13, 2016 - The University of Minnesota College of Science and Engineering has selected Professor Lorraine Francis as the 3M Chair in Experiential Learning for a three-year term. Funded by the 3M Foundation, the 3M Chair was created to enhance the undergraduate experience for all CSE students, improve retention rates and better prepare students for entering the workforce after graduation. In this new role, Francis will develop and direct experiential learning opportunities for undergraduate students that teach the fundamentals of open-ended problem solving, teamwork, ethics, innovation, active learning and design. Francis will also establish strong working relationships with the faculty in each department, beginning with the directors of undergraduate studies.

Francis has been a faculty member at the University of Minnesota since 1990. She teaches a wide variety of courses including Materials Performance and Materials Processing. Her research focuses on the materials science of coating and printing processes with an emphasis on understanding processing – structure relationships. She engages with industry on research through the University of Minnesota Industrial Partnership for Research in Interfacial and Materials Engineering (IPRIME), and serves as deputy director of the University of Minnesota Materials Research Science and Engineering Center (MRSEC).

She has won awards for her teaching and research including the John A. Tallmadge Award for Contributions to Coating Technology (2014) and Horace T. Morse University of Minnesota Alumni Association Award for Outstanding Contributions to Undergraduate Education (2014). In addition, Francis has served in several outreach and service capacities at the University, including being a member of the CSE Student Shops Committee, presenting about 3D-printing to high school and alumni groups, and serving as part of the college’s Taylor Committee on undergraduate education.

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