Two CENG Professors Awarded Distinguished Scholarship Awards

Scott Hazelwood, left, and Foaad Khosmood were named Distinguished Scholars.

Scott Hazelwood, who has conducted internationally recognized research in skeletal tissue mechanics, and Foaad Khosmood, whose work has advanced gaming and a greater awareness of government activity, have received Distinguished Scholarship Awards for 2019-2020.

Each year, Cal Poly faculty, staff, students, and alumni nominate faculty for the recognition. From those nominations, the Academic Senate Distinguished Scholarship Award Committee chooses three honorees campus wide, based on achievement in scholarship and creative activity across the entire range of disciplines represented at Cal Poly.

Khosmood, who teaches in both the Computer Science & Software Engineering and the Computer Engineering departments, said the recognition is validating.

“It’s a huge honor for me to have been given this award, which tells me the campus and the committee really values the kind of scholarship that I’m involved in,” said Khosmood, who has been teaching at Cal Poly since 2011.

Hazelwood, a biomedical engineering professor who began teaching at Cal Poly in 2007, said he hopes the recognition will inspire others to further their own research.

“Many faculty across Cal Poly are doing outstanding research work,” Hazelwood said. “I have been inspired by past winners of the Distinguished Scholarship Award to continue furthering my research and to continue to involve students in research projects.”

The awards honor work conducted primarily at Cal Poly.  Both Hazelwood and Khosmood have conducted research at Cal Poly that has included extensive student involvement.

Hazelwood’s research interests include osteoarthritis, osteoporosis and bone and cartilage mechanics.  In particular, he is interested in the effects of aging, exercise, obesity, injury and disease on the growth, remodeling and degradation processes of bone and cartilage.

Hazelwood has been a co-author on 43 peer-reviewed journal articles and 107 conference papers and abstracts. As a result of his research, he is currently on the editorial board for the Journal of Orthopedic Trauma and has served as a manuscript reviewer for 19 journals and as a National Science Foundation proposal reviewer.

Hazelwood has assisted lab director and chief fundraiser Steve Klisch in  the development of the Human Motion Biomechanics Lab for graduate and undergraduate research in motion analysis aimed at improving clinical approaches to prevent and rehabilitate osteoarthritis.

Khosmood’s  primary interests are artificial intelligence, Natural Language Processing, games and systems. He has more than 50 peer-reviewed publications, almost all with students.

As a graduate student, he co-founded the Global Game Jam, the largest game jam in the world, later incorporated as a 501(c)3 in San Luis Obispo. He has served as the CTO,  president and board member for the organization. The most recent 48-hour jam featured 50,000 participants from 120 countries. Over 900 jam sites worldwide were involved in 2020, including the Cal Poly Game Development club advised by Khosmood.

As research director for the Cal Poly Institute for Advanced Technology and Public Policy, Khosmood uses technology to help solve public policy challenges. His AI4Reporters project, a collaboration between Cal Poly and the University of Miami that is sponsored by the Knight Foundation, aims to create an AI-driven news wire service covering state legislatures.

Selection criteria for the award include the quality of the creative or scholarly work, importance of the scholarly work to students and importance of the scholarly work to Cal Poly.

In addition to Hazelwood and Khosmood, the committee honored Diana Stanton from the Theatre & Dance Department in the College of Liberal Arts. All three recipients received a $2,000 award and will be formally honored during fall convocation.