Dr. Carmen Menoni Honored as Role Model and Mentor to Women at Colorado State

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Carmen Menoni, professor of electrical and computer engineering, was recently honored by Colorado State University with the Margaret B. Hazaleus Award. CSU's Office of Women’s Programs and Studies and the Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity presented Dr. Menoni with the award on March 27 at the Women's Studies Celebration Banquet.

The Hazaleus awards were started to honor individuals for long-term efforts to enhance the opportunities for women on campus. Since 1997, women have been honored who are role models to faculty, administrators and students and who break ground, as Margaret Hazaleus did, for the women who follow them.

Courtney Brewer, who received her Master’s degree under Dr. Menoni, noted in the award nomination that Dr. Menoni has an impressive record in recruiting and mentoring CSU women and minority students. She encourages female students to participate in senior design courses, exposing them to the excitement of research inquiry. In collaboration with Dr. Nancy Levinger, she created the Distinguished Women in Science and Engineering lecture series to bring eminent women to campus. As a member and current chair of the President's Commission on Women and Gender Equity, she works to identify issues that affect the climate of women at CSU.

Dr. Menoni's efforts have expanded into K-12. She invites high school students to take advantage of hands-on learning opportunities at the university, hosting several students for a month-long research experience in her laboratory. She also offers a "Lasers and Optics" workshop annually to local high school students. At the elementary school level, Dr. Menoni developed a workshop called "Let's Make Light" as part of a month-long mentoring series.

Dr. Menoni's research contributions were recognized earlier in 2008-09. She was named a Fellow of the American Physical Society and the Optical Society of America for advancing nano-scale imaging using extreme ultraviolet laser light and seminal contributions to understanding the physics of semiconductor optical materials and laser diodes. The Optical Society of America also named Menoni as a Fellow for contributions to nanoscale resolution imaging using compact extreme ultraviolet lasers and the understanding of semiconductor optical materials and devices.

In October 2008, R&D Magazine recognized a tabletop microscope developed by Menoni and her team of Colorado State University and Berkeley researchers at the National Science Foundation Engineering Research Center for Science and Technology as one of the Top 100 most significant technological advances for 2008.