For Immediate Release
December 4, 2001
Contacts: Lee Tune, 301 405 4679 or email@example.com
UM Names Robert Fischell Winner of the 2001 Major F. Riddick, Jr. Entrepreneurship Award
COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- The University of Maryland announced today that inventor and physicist Robert E. Fischell has been awarded the 2001 Major F. Riddick, Jr. Entrepreneurship Award for his support and encouragement of student entrepreneurs through the new Fischell Fellowship in Biomedical Engineering. Earlier this year, Fischell, a resident of Howard County, Md., donated $1.25 million to the university's A. James Clark School of Engineering to establish the Fischell Fellowship, a unique program that will allow talented and innovative doctoral students at Maryland to pursue their own ideas in bioengineering.
"The University of Maryland is honored to give this award to alumnus Robert Fischell," said William Destler, Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost. "Dr. Fischell built his career thinking up ideas for new lifesaving medical devices and systems and then working to make them become a reality. Now he is giving engineering graduate students at Maryland a chance to do the same thing through the Fischell Fellowship."
Fischell has invented a large variety of medical device improvements and technologies, including the first implantable insulin pump, the rechargeable pacemaker and highly flexible stents for placement in coronary arteries. He has been awarded nearly 200 U.S. and international patents.
Giving innovative biomedical entrepreneurs
"I'm gratified to receive this award and excited to be able to support an important new program for graduate biomedical research at the University of Maryland," said Fischell, who holds both a master's in physics and an honorary doctor of science from the university.
"The Fischell Fellowship is designed to help innovative entrepreneurs obtain a Ph.D. in biomedical engineering while giving them a chance to turn their original ideas into new medical devices for the benefit of humankind," Fischell said.
The award, which carries a $5000 prize, was presented during a breakfast ceremony in Baltimore that was part of the first day of activities at the annual Maryland Technology Showcase. Fischell said he would give the prize money back to the university as additional support for the Fischell Fellowship.
Maryland Technology Showcase Founder
The Riddick Award is named in honor of Major F. Riddick, Jr. in recognition of his founding of the Maryland Technology Showcase and for the "entrepreneurial spirit" Riddick brought to his former roles as chief of staff for Maryland Governor Parris N. Glendening and chairman of the State Information Technology Board. Currently, Riddick is chairman of the Maryland Technology Showcase Board.
The Riddick award is managed by the Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship in the university's Robert H. Smith School of Business. The Smith School of Business ranks 7th in the world in entrepreneurship and 4th in information technology according to a Financial Times (London) worldwide survey of MBA programs. Overall, the Smith School was ranked 23rd in the world by the Times. Nationally, the Smith School was ranked this year among the top 20 U.S. business schools by Wall Street Journal (graduate, 13th).
The Fischell Fellowship in Biomedical Engineering is a competitive doctoral fellowship managed by Maryland's A. James Clark School of Engineering, a widely recognized leader in innovative engineering education. The Clark School's graduate programs are ranked 18th nationally and 11th among publicly supported institutions by U. S. News & World Report.
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