Bejan to Receive 14th Honorary Doctorate in Bulgaria

DURHAM, N.C. -- Adrian Bejan, the J.A. Jones Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the Pratt School of Engineering at Duke University, will receive an honorary doctorate, his 14th such degree, from the Technical University of Gabrovo in Bulgaria on April 5.

Bejan has come a long way from his teenage years as a professional basketball player in Romania. He won a full academic scholarship to MIT, defected from his then-communist home country to complete his Ph.D., and has become a professor at Duke University.

Bejan specializes in the fields of energy and thermal sciences and fluid mechanics, but is also noted for his promotion of humanistic values and European culture. He is frequently invited to speak at international conferences and collaborates with researchers the world over.

“I learned early on in my career from friends involved in NATO conferences that small gestures of citizenship pay significant dividends for the advancement of science,” said Bejan.

Bejan has published more than 390 technical papers and his contributions to thermodynamics have garnered numerous awards, including the prestigious American Society of Mechanical Engineers International’s (ASME) Max Jakob Memorial Award.

He also received the ASME’s 1990 James Harry Potter Gold Medal for "original and unorthodox ideas" in thermodynamics, its 1994 Heat Transfer Memorial Award for "significant and often unconventional contributions," and its 1996 Worcester Reed Warner Medal for his "originality, challenges to orthodoxy and impact on engineering." In 2000 he also won the American Society of Engineering Education’s Ralph Coats Roe Medal for outstanding teaching of mechanical engineering.