Founder of UCSD bioengineering program honored with lifetime achievement award

San Diego, CA, Monday, March 1, 2004 -- A Chinese engineer who came to the United States right after World War II and went on to do pioneering research in aeronautics and bioengineering has been honored by his fellow Asian American engineers. On Feb. 28, Yuan-Cheng Fung received the Distinguished Life Time Achievement Award at the 2004 CIE EWEEK Asian American Engineer of the Year Award Banquet in Santa Clara, CA.

University of California, San Diego (UCSD) bioengineering professor emeritus Y.-C. "Bert" Fung was selected for the honor by the Chinese Institute of Engineers, USA (CIE/USA), co-sponsor of National Engineers Week 2004. The award program was created to recognize outstanding Asian American professionals in academe, public services and corporate entities for their great contributions to the nation and communities. Previous winners of the lifetime achievement award include Leo Esaki and Samuel Chao-Chung Ting who won the Nobel Prize in Physics, respectively, in 1973 and 1976, as well as Chang-Lin Tien, former Chancellor of the University of California at Berkeley.

More than a dozen organizations sponsored the event, and nearly 800 distinguished guests, honorees, corporate executives and community leaders attended the awards banquet.

Fung retired from full-time teaching at UCSD in 1990, but still goes to his office and lab daily at UCSD's Jacobs School of Engineering, where the newly-built bioengineering building's main auditorium is named after him. He was one of the first visionaries to recognize that engineering principles and technologies could be used to develop innovative ways to diagnose, treat and prevent human disease. President Clinton awarded him the National Medal of Science in 2000 for his pioneering work in not one, but two, fields: bioengineering, and aeronautics.

Born near Shanghai in 1919, Fung studied aeronautical engineering in college and helped design airplanes for China's Bureau of Aeronautical Research tow

Contact: Doug Ramsey
University of California - San Diego

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