Departments of Statistics and Chemical and Biological Engineering
Iowa State University
Since joining ISU in 1990, Derrick Rollins has established an outstanding record of research, but also a reputation for classroom excellence and mentoring skills.
Rollins grew up in inner city Kansas City, under sometimes desperately impoverished circumstances. He earned a chemical engineering bachelor’s degree from the University of Kansas. Rollins worked for DuPont before returning to college to earn master’s degrees in chemical engineering and statistics and a doctorate in chemical engineering, all from The Ohio State University.
Rollins’ wide-ranging research focuses on glucose monitoring, modeling and control to improve blood sugar maintenance in diabetes patients; supporting technology for ventricular assist devices, which partially or completely replace failing hearts; computer models of human aging and grain bin dryers and to improve biomedical engineering cancer protocols; artificial neural networks, a machine-learning technique based on brain-cell organization; and much more.
He has earned multiple awards, led by a 1994 National Science Foundation Presidential Faculty Fellows Award, which the U.S. president presented to only a handful of engineering and science professors each year.
Rollins’ awards for exceptional teaching and mentoring, however, are nearly as important. Students and organizations have repeatedly honored him as a favorite professor and faculty member and in 2007 he received the ISU Louis Thompson Distinguished Undergraduate Teaching Award.
Rollins also is the ISU director for IIN-SPIRE LSAMP, the Iowa, Illinois, Nebraska Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation. The organization aims to broaden underrepresented minorities’ participation in science, technology, engineering and mathematics education in the Midwest.
Source: Rollins website (under construction)