The Institute

Keeping pace with IISE 

Chemically suited for working with people

New Face of Engineering Ortiz aims to recruit for the profession, move into management 

Nicole Ortiz, IISE’s choice for this year’s DiscoverE New Faces of Engineering,
said her desire to work with people led her to industrial engineering.Chemistry led Nicole Ortiz into industrial engineering.

IISE's winner for the 2017 DiscoverE New Faces of Engineering had a chemistry teacher in her high school in Puerto Rico. The teacher, keen to encourage the bright young student to hone her impressive math and science skills, told Ortiz she should pursue chemical engineering in college. But after some investigation at the University of Puerto Rico-Mayaguez, Ortiz stumbled onto industrial engineering.

"The first time I took classes I knew that was the profession that I wanted to have," Ortiz said, noting that industrial engineers work with people and management.

"You have more leadership, and you manage projects and you motivate people," Ortiz said. "I am really, really social, and I am a leader all the time. So industrial engineering made a better fit for me because I will be working with people more than if I was a chemical engineer."

The DiscoverE New Faces program recognizes outstanding engineers age 30 or younger who have improved public welfare significantly. They are featured in an advertisement in Engineering News-Record magazine and on the DiscoverE website. For more information about the program, visit

New Faces honorees serve as ambassadors for the profession, something Ortiz has years of experience with. She has been mentoring students for a while, including two who were close to failing the ninth grade. She became their tutor, meeting with them several times a week. She motivated them to continue their schooling, and both children graduated.

She said mentoring has changed her life, and she is very proud of her volunteer work.

Now, she wants to visit schools and show students, particularly young girls, what industrial engineering is and how it can make the world a better place. She said the proportion of men to women in engineering programs is skewed toward the men, and she wants to change that and encourage more women to follow her footsteps and study industrial engineering.

Ortiz currently is an operations engineer with Hewlett Packard, working with forecasting, inventory management and freight cost reduction. She plans to continue upgrading her skills and aspires to become a manager in five to 10 years. She is close to earning her master's degree in industrial engineering from the University of Puerto Rico-Mayaguez.

"I want to keep learning about how everything works, not only my part of the work but the entire organization," she said. "I want to learn a little bit about everything so I can have a top-level vision of everything. That will definitely help me to be a manager and be a better leader in the future."

One journal: Two special issues

IISE Transactions tackles humanitarian logistics and additive manufacturing

IISE Transactions tackles humanitarian logistics and additive manufacturingIISE Transactions is seeking contributions for two upcoming special issues: one on humanitarian logistics and one on additive manufacturing.

Worldwide, disasters claimed hundreds of thousands of lives and led to a loss of $1.5 trillion between 2005 and 2015, according to the U.N. Office for Disaster Risk Reduction. Since 80 percent of disaster relief expenses go toward logistics, humanitarian logistics is a key element of helping victims. This special humanitarian logistics issue will tackle emerging themes in that research arena, including controlling the efficient, cost-effective flow and storage of goods and materials to alleviate the suffering of vulnerable people.

Additive manufacturing, also called 3-D printing, refers to technologies that directly fabricate physical products from computer-aided design (CAD) models by a layered manufacturing process. It is widely recognized as a disruptive technology that could fundamentally change manufacturing. The goal of this special issue on additive manufacturing is to collect cutting-edge research illustrating how 3-D printing will affect design and manufacturing.

The deadline for submitting to either issue is Sept. 1. Authors should submit their paper through Scholar One's Manuscript Central online manuscript submission system at

IISE Transactions is IISE's flagship research journal and is published monthly. To subscribe, call (800) 494-0460 or (770) 449-0460. For more details on the journal and all IISE publications, visit

IISE visits D.C. symposium

Hartman, Foss and Greene represent institute at engineering convocation

IISE visits D.C. symposiumIISE President Joe Hartman, Immediate Past President Michael Foss and CEO Don Greene represented the institute at April's Public Policy Symposium and Engineering Convocation in Washington, D.C.

The first day of the event featured discussions about artificial intelligence, autonomous transportation and how they will transform business and society. The second day was a policy forum, with discussion on divergent views on federal investments to spur innovation, productivity and competitiveness in engineering, along with how federal agencies are involved in research and technologies. Speakers included researchers, Trump administration officials and members of Congress.

The two-day event included the presidents, presidents-elect and executive directors from 44 national engineering societies, representing more than 2 million engineers. Greene said it's important that institute leaders stay abreast of technologies, trends and what's happening in the nation's capital.

"IISE is proud to represent industrial and systems engineering professionals in these important and informative meetings," Greene said.

Connected through the decades

Kevin Taafe's desire to know fellow students led to university chapter best practices

Outgoing Mid-Atlantic Region Vice President Kevin Taaffe said local
chapters are a great way to get connected.Connections have always driven Kevin Taaffe's involvement with IISE; connections that decades later turned into an effort to define best practices for running university chapters across the entire institute.

Taaffe, the Harriet and Jerry Dempsey Associate Professor in Industrial Engineering at Clemson University and outgoing Mid-Atlantic Region vice president, got involved with the student chapter at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign to get connected to his fellow IE students. He admitted he probably wasn't thinking about the move as a "great career thing."

"But that's what it ended up leading to, nurturing those connections and relationships and meeting new people, finding out what others are doing, and that just has a natural way of opening up more opportunities for you."

Years later as region vice president, a lot of the monthly RVP calls revolved around identifying the best ways to run a university chapter. Using those connections, Taaffe said, the Mid-Atlantic Region conference held a town hall where student members voiced their concerns or support for ideas that worked, distilling the information into five things that worked well and bringing the details to IISE headquarters.

"That turned into an effort at the national level to say let's be more focused about how we collect best practices across all of our university chapters," Taaffe said.

The interest in better ideas for university chapters comes naturally, as Taaffe has been faculty advisor for Clemson's student chapter for nearly 10 years. And he still pushes that model of connections: getting connected to other IE students through the university chapter, getting to know students in chapters at other universities and getting to know professionals in the workplace.

"It can't do anything but help jump-start your career," he said.

The faculty advisor post led him to a spot as the region's vice president for student development before he became RVP.

"I like trying to be that voice for people across the region in trying to take their concerns to headquarters and make a difference," he said.

Taaffe admits to feeling a little sad now that he is leaving his RVP post, but he plans to stay active. Although unsure of his next leadership role, he plans to get more plugged into the Society for Health Systems, the IISE society that focuses on health systems engineering.

"That's what I kind of envision," Taaffe said. "As opportunities or needs arise in SHS or IISE, I'm going to try to fill in there."

Awards of steel

IISE honors the best of publications at annual conference

Awards of steelEvery year, hundreds of ISEs and ISE types gather to honor their best and brightest.

This year's slate of honors and awards were handed out at the 2017 IISE Annual Conference and Expo in Pittsburgh. The Steel City was appropriate, as IISE publications strive to present solid ideas grounded in science and math that improve quality, decrease costs and lead to project fruition. Below are awards from IISE publications.

More honors will be published in the July issue of ISE magazine.

IISE Transactions awards
Design & Manufacturing Best Paper: Sanket Bhat and Ananth Krishnamurthy, "Value of Capacity Flexibility in Manufacturing Systems with Seasonal Demands"

Design & Manufacturing Best Application Paper: Lixin Tang, Wei Jiang and Yun Dong, "Research into Container Reshuffling and Stacking Problems in Container Terminal Yards"

Operations Engineering & Analytics Best Paper: Ihsan Yanikoglu, Dick den Hertog and Jack Kleijnen, "Robust Dual- Response Optimization"

Operations Engineering & Analytics Best Application Paper: David Eckman, Lisa Maillart and Andrew J. Schaefer, "Optimal Pinging Frequencies in the Search for an Immobile Beacon"

Quality & Reliability Engineering Best Paper: Li Zeng, Xinwei Deng and Jian Yang, "Constrained Hierarchical Modeling of Degradation Data in Tissue-Engineered Scaffold Fabrication"

Quality & Reliability Engineering Best Application Paper: Saumuy Suriano, Chenhui Shao, Jack Hu, Hui Wang and Praveen Sekhar, "Progressive Measurement and Monitoring for Multi-Resolution Data in Surface Manufacturing Considering Spatial and Cross Correlations"

Scheduling & Logistics Best Paper: Michael Wagner, "Robust Purchasing and Information Asymmetry in Supply Chains with a Price-Only Contract"

Scheduling & Logistics Best Application Paper: Nils Boysen, Simon Emde and Dirk Briskorn, "Just-in-Time Vehicle Scheduling with Capacity Constraints"

IISE Transactions on Healthcare Systems Engineering Award
First place: Mehmet Serdar Kilinc and Ashlea Bennett Milburn, "A Study of Home Telehealth Diffusion among U.S. Home Healthcare Agencies using System Dynamics"

IISE Joint Publishers Book-of-the-Year
Yuval Cohen and Avraham (Avi) Shtub, Introduction to Industrial Engineering, Second Edition

Adding a 10 spot

26 chapters honored, a record number for this decade
Ten chapters vaulted to gold, silver or bronze status in IISE's 2016 Professional Chapter Recognition competition, part of an astounding 26 chapters that earned such recognition.

The number is a record for this decade and the most since 19 professional chapters reached one of the top three levels in 2014. Of special note, two Ohio chapters – Columbus and Dayton – which weren't on any of the top gold, silver or bronze levels last year, achieved gold status.

Others new to the list this year include Central Florida and Puget Sound (silver), along with Bay Area/Silicon Valley (California), Chicago, Eastern Iowa-Western Illinois, Northwest Arkansas, Portland and Upstate South Carolina.

The honors were given at the IISE Annual Conference and Expo, held May 20-23 in Pittsburgh. The full list of medal-winning chapters and their presidents is below:


  • Columbus (Ohio), Scott Sink
  • Dayton (Ohio), Pratik Parikh
  • IISE Costa Rica, Diogenes Alvarez Solórzano
  • IISE South Jersey Delaware Valley, Kevin Drevik
  • Los Angeles, Maryam Salimi
  • Pittsburgh, Rob Sweeney
  • Twin Cities (Minnesota), Jeromy Knapp
  • Wichita (Kansas), John Huffman


  • Central Connecticut, Corey Kiassat
  • Central Florida, Joey Canamo
  • Greater Kansas City, Antia Noller
  • Memphis (Tennessee), Angela Carter
  • Milwaukee, Diane Kargol
  • National Capital (Washington, D.C.), Sean Gahagan
  • Puget Sound (Washington), Andrea Cortes-Beltran
  • Raleigh (North Carolina), Haleh Byrne
  • Rochester (New York), John Kaemmerlen


  • Bay Area/Silicon Valley (California), Matthew Burke
  • Chicago, Gary Peterson
  • Detroit, Jacqueline Sinishtaj
  • Eastern Iowa-Western Illinois, Aaron Hoover
  • Northwest Arkansas, JD Ford
  • Portland, Brandon Booth
  • Reading, Pennsylvania, Tom Flock
  • Richmond (Virginia), Mark Oakes
  • Upstate South Carolina, Jon Morgan

Six chapter newsletters go platinum

Communication is the lifeblood of IISE, and the institute's professional chapters are no different. That's why IISE honors great chapter newsletters each year – the publications that deliver to the needs and expectations of the reader with writing that is accurate, interesting, relevant and easy to read.

In 2016, six IISE chapter newsletters met that standard to earn coveted platinum status (the South Jersey Delaware Valley and Twin Cities have reached that plateau every year this decade), while three others were one step down at gold status.

The following list includes the winners and their newsletter editors:


  • Greater Detroit, Britney Beyer
  • Milwaukee, John Migliozzi
  • National Capital (Washington, D.C.), Tiff Cremer
  • Pittsburgh, Chris Mensah
  • South Jersey Delaware Valley, Paul Mulrooney
  • Twin Cities (Minnesota), Jenna Weiland


  • Central Connecticut, Brian Nathanson
  • Dayton (Ohio), Pratik Parikh
  • Long Island (New York) Tom Fiorella