UMD Logo Flash Points | The FPE@UMD eNewsletter
October 2014
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UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND / FEARLESS IDEASFlash Points: The Dept. of Fire Protection Engineering E-newsletterDemo of a mini fire tornado for Women In Engineering tour. FEATURED PHOTO: Students in Assistant Professor Michael Gollner's new course, Wildland Fires: Science and Applications. "The students participated in a 'race to the top' challenge during our lab day on ignition and flame spread, building little 'trees' of paper to learn how wildland fire spreads," Gollner (second from left) explains. "As the winning team could explain, varying the spacing and surface area-to-volume ratio of the fuel had a huge effect on spread rates."
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Dr. BryanProfessor John L. Bryan, 1926–2014

We are deeply saddened to report the passing of Dr. John L. Bryan, the founding chair and professor emeritus of the University of Maryland's Department of Fire Protection Engineering. Read our tribute to "Prof" »

Salamader logoSAVE THE DATE! The 2015 Salamander Career Fair
Wednesday, February 11

Haven't joined us before for this event? Contact to book a spot!

Jim MilkeMessage From the Chair
Jim Milke, Ph.D., P.E., FSFPE, B.S. ’76

I am pleased to announce that Ken Isman, Clinical Professor of Fire Protection Engineering, started in mid-August and is teaching ENFP 250 (Introduction to Life Safety Analysis) and ENFP 310 (Water Based Fire Protection Systems Design) this semester.

There are several additional noteworthy developments in the department involving enrollment, curriculum, research, and outreach.

MPACT WEEK. Professors Andre Marshall, Arnaud Trouvé and I recently participated in the Clark School's second annual Mpact Week, speaking on this year's theme of disaster resilience. The session also included special guests Anthony Hamins (Chief of Fire Research, NIST) and Stephen Cauffman (Lead for Disaster Resilience, NIST). You can watch all of our talks and a panel/Q&A discussion at

ENROLLMENT. The department is continuing with our FPE-specific open houses this fall. Attendance at these events has been larger this fall than last fall and will hopefully result in growth in our undergraduate enrollment, which has a current count of approximately 100 students. We’re also continuing the special program for high school students developed by Ph.D. student Isaac Leventon (also an alumnus of the FPE B.S. and M.S. programs), this year with support from the SFPE Education and Scientific Foundation. SFPE’s support will enable Isaac to record presentations.

CURRICULUM. This fall, Dr. Michael Gollner is offering a new course in wildland fires that is cross-listed as a senior undergraduate elective course and a graduate course. We are also in the process of developing a senior undergraduate elective course in process safety management.

RESEARCH. Research support in the department continues to increase (while the overall support in the Clark School has declined slightly). For the fiscal year ending in June 2014, our research expenditures exceeded $2M. This is a significant milestone for the department!

In This Issue:

Ken IsmanQ&A with Clinical Professor Ken Isman, '86

FPE's first clinical professor is well into his first semester at UMD. We asked him how things are going, and why he made the transition from industry to academia. More »

Rhino DonationsCampaign Update: Rhino Donates $100K

“We wanted to give back to a department that provided us with an outstanding education and also help continue support for the high standards of the university,” says Rhino founder John Mitros, ’98. More »

THANK YOU, DONORS! Your gifts will help us ensure that FPE@UMD remains at the forefront of its field, cultivates future generations of industry-savvy graduates, and conducts applied research. View our donor list and campaign progress chart »

Breanne ThompsonStudent Profiles

This issue, we're profiling students who used their initiative and passion to secure great opportunities and experiences in FPE, particularly abroad.


Summer Internship: Breanne Thompson / Fisher Engineering (at left)
Study Abroad: Jon Sajdak / University of Queensland
Research in England and France: Cara Hamel
Forging a Career in FPE: Christine Pongratz

Scholarship WinnersScholarships, Recognition, and Awards

FPE students, as we know, do amazing things! Conor McCoy ('15) and Shelley Jin ('15) were selected for prestigious NIST Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships (SURF) in 2014. Rachel Lentchner (2018) (... awaiting response from her) We are also proud to announce our 2014-2015 scholarship recipients. Congratulations! Learn more about scholarships FPE students could be eligible to receive »


FPE Class RingFPE@UMD Class Rings Now Available!

To order: visit Click on the following: "His Rings" or "Her Rings" > " Traditional" > "Design Your Ring" > "Choose A Design" for Side 2 > "School Specific Designs" and then select the FPE logo.

Link to FPE web site Link to Clark School web site