Leading by Example, Encouraging Experimentation
Many of the students he works with in clubs and on senior capstone projects publish papers about their work. Kyle Norland, now a PhD student in systems and industrial engineering, published two papers when he was an undergraduate in the Arizona Autonomous Vehicle Club. One of them won the award for best undergraduate paper at the International Telemetry Conference.
“Dr. Marcellin was really encouraging of the research process and experimenting, of that mindset of just trying new stuff and seeing what happens,” said Norland, who also served as the president of Tau Beta Pi as an undergraduate. “He played a really big role in giving me an example of what a researcher would be, of what that would be like.”
Marcellin, who has won 11 teaching awards, said situations like this are exactly the reason that he places so much focus on undergraduate education: He believes these students stand to gain the most from mentorship opportunities.
“I decided I wanted to go where I could really have an impact and help people enter the engineering profession,” he said. “Our incoming undergraduates are really good. They’re really smart, and most of them are really motivated.”
Jennifer Nadolski, a senior in ECE, has known Marcellin since she joined Arizona Autonomous as a first-year student. She now serves as the club’s president, as well as the secretary for the university’s chapter of the Society of Women Engineers. She said his passion for teaching comes through in his combination of hands-on help, personal mentorship and “dad jokes.”
“Dr. Marcellin is friendly, humble and passionate about teaching students, and one of the best professors in the ECE Department,” she said. “I highly value his support and advice, and I am very grateful to have met him.”
This article also appears on the College of Engineering news website.