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Associate professor named ASME fellow

Yuyi Lin seated.

Associate Professor Yuyi Lin was recently named a fellow by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

It’s a small rectangle, made up of metal and plastic. It’s not a grandiose plaque or giant trophy, but what it symbolizes is every bit as impressive.

On the left, is a pin with the logo of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, and on the right, the name of the owner — Yuyi Lin, Ph.D. But below the name of the recipient sits the most important piece of text. It simply reads, “Fellow.”

Lin, an associate professor in the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department at the University of Missouri, recently was named an ASME fellow, the organization’s highest membership grade.

A member of the organization since 1988, when he was a doctoral candidate at the University of California-Berkeley, being selected as a fellow was a meaningful marker for Lin in his career.

“Very few members become fellows. I have friends; they have been in ASME longer than me, and for their whole life they are members — senior members, — but not fellows,” said Lin, who has been with the university since 1990. “So I think it’s an honor.”

As one might expect, it’s not an easy accolade to come by. Lin said there’s approximately one fellow for every 40 or 50 ASME members worldwide.

The process alone is difficult to complete. To be considered, a candidate must have 10 years or more of active corporate membership in the organization and must have at least 10 years of active practice.

Then a sponsor has to nominate the individual for fellowship and write a letter of recommendation, which go alongside three other letters from sponsors, preferably ASME Fellows. A maximum of 10 significant publications in the appropriate field are accepted for review, and a decision based on these documents is made by the fellow review committee.

Lin’s sponsor was Yuwen Zhang, interim department chairman of mechanical and aerospace engineering.  Lin and Zhang received letters of sponsorship from colleagues as far flung as Singapore and Hong Kong as well as Albert P. Pisano, dean of the School of Engineering at the University of California-San Diego.

It didn’t take 26 years because Lin wasn’t accomplished enough — he’s a licensed professional engineer, has served as local chapter chair for Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) multiple times, as technical committee member for ASME and SAE and has had his research published in numerous journals. But he didn’t seek the spotlight for himself.

“I was kind of lazy in grabbing fame,” Lin said with a smile. “I did not push for it. My colleague wanted to help me become a fellow.”

The documents were submitted for review in December, and Lin found out about his selection Jan. 22.

He said he was proud to be selected because of the organization’s standing in the engineering community and their promotion of the field. AMSE’s stated mission is “to serve diverse global communities by advancing, disseminating and applying engineering knowledge for improving the quality of life and communicating the excitement of engineering.”

“ASME does a lot of good things to promote engineering, to promote mechanical engineering,” Lin said. “They have very high-quality journals. They do a lot of good things for the profession.”