Congratulations to Prof. Kevin Jones, from the University of Florida, on receiving the NAMES (North American Materials Education Symposium) 2018 award for Outstanding Contributions to Materials Education for his course “Impact of Materials on Society” (IMOS).
Introduced at the start of the 2012/13 academic year, IMOS is an innovative cross-disciplinary course at the interface of engineering and the social sciences. By exploring the relationship between the discovery of new materials and the development of technologies and social structures, it teaches students that engineering shapes – and is shaped by – social and cultural variables.
Speaking in a 2015 interview with the Materials Research Society (MRS), Prof. Kevin Jones explained that “you don’t create something in a vacuum, you create in a society. So, society is influencing what your creation as much as your creation is influencing society”. Understanding this ‘entanglement’ is a fundamental aspect of the course.”