The Liviu Librescu Memorial Lecture is given annually to commemorate the life of Dr. Liviu Librescu who was actively involved in the education of students -- both graduate and undergraduate -- over his 21 years of service at Virginia Tech that ended when his life was tragically taken on April 16, 2007. "That day we saw horror, but we also saw quiet acts of courage. We saw this courage in a teacher named Liviu Librescu. With the gunman set to enter his class, [he] blocked the door with his body while his students fled to safety." Since that event, we have honored Librescu by inviting distinguished researchers to campus.
The Kevin P. Granata seminar series was created to commemorate the spirit and academic excellence of Dr. Kevin Granata, an internationally recognized researcher and professor who lost his life in the tragic events of April 16, 2007. The seminar topics gravitate around topics of biomechanics, which Granata's specialty area. Whenever possible, colleagues who knew and worked with Granata are engaged. All seminars are hosted by the Department of Biomedical Engineering and Mechanics, home to Engineering Science and Mechanics and Engineering Mechanics degree programs that Granata was a vibrant participant in.
The Hassan Aref Memorial Lecture is given annually to commemorate the lasting contribution of Dr. Aref to mechanics, particularly in the area of fluid mechanics. Before his death, Aref served as Dean of Engineering at Virginia Tech and was internationally recognized for his technical contributions in the areas of chaotic advection and vortex dynamics. Aref believed that the primary goal of a university should be education through both teaching and research. The memorial lecture speakers reflect this belief, as well as the importance and breadth of mechanics.
The Michael W. Hyer seminars are given in recognition of the contributions of Dr. Hyer over his 30 years as a member of the Virginia Tech community. An outstanding research and educator in the area of composites materials and structures and mechanics, Hyer was recognized with the Engineering Science and Mechanics department’s Frank A. Maher Award for Excellence in Education and was named the N. Waldo Harrison Professor. In addition to his contributions at Virginia Tech, he was professionally active and was named a fellow by four professional societies (ASC, AIAA, ASME, and AAM) and has won major research awards and other recognitions by professional societies.