LAS VEGAS, NM – The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine named a Highlands University professor as one of its 2017-18 Jefferson Science Fellows.
Ernest Greene, a professor of engineering and biology at Highlands, will begin his fellowship work in August, influencing science policy at the U.S. Department of State. Greene is one of 14 tenured professors from across the country chosen for this year’s fellowship.
“It’s an opportunity for me to serve on a national level,” said Greene, who has been a member of Highlands’ faculty since 1992. “I’ve served in the bioengineering community around the world, so it’s great to be able to utilize all those experiences that will have an impact on a lot of people on a national and international stage.”
The Jefferson Science Fellowship Program began in 2003 to collaborate with academic research communities to help form and implement U.S. foreign policy and international development programming.
This year’s fellows include faculty members from Rutgers, Purdue, Pennsylvania State, the State University of New York at Binghamton, the University of Alabama, the University of Maryland, the University of Florida, North Carolina State, the Wayne State University School of Medicine, and Texas Tech.
Highlands President Sam Minner said he is proud to have faculty members of Greene’s caliber at the university.
“To have a world-class researcher – one who has been a visiting professor at large universities around the world – choose to teach at a university like ours because he believes in the transformational experience of science education is the mark of a rare man,” Minner said. “Today, far too many people are ignorant, fearful or antagonistic to the scientific process.
It is Dr. Greene’s passion to change that.”
During the course of his career, Greene helped introduce echocardiography, the use of ultrasound waves to study the heart, in New Zealand and China and started the first bioengineering program at the University of Brazil, Rio de Janeiro. He served on the editorial board of the Journal of Ultrasound in Medicine, chaired several research and review committees, and has 100 published manuscripts in peer-reviewed journals and two published books.
Greene, who earned his doctorate from Colorado State University – Fort Collins, is a native New Mexican and the first person in his ranching family to go to college. He said he hopes his work with the fellowship with inspire a new generation of students.
“I spend a lot of my time telling students you can be the best you can be,” Greene said. “You have to work hard.”
Outside of the classroom, Greene coached the university’s two-time champion rugby team, the Vatos.
“It will be good to have ol’ Coach Greene working in the State Department,” Greene said.