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Engineering Professor Creates Inspiring Artwork

Recently, a painting of an SR-71 Mach 3 jet was added to the stairwell in Duke Centennial. It is the latest creation by Peter Tkacik, an associate professor of mechanical engineering and engineering science in the William States Lee College of Engineering.

Tkacik’s artistic pursuits are a hobby, but he sees them as a source of inspiration for engineering students as they learn more about their future profession. "I sketched growing up, and I've found it to be a valuable skill as an engineer," said Tkacik. "I say that I do pencil CAD; I can draw a design in three-dimension so others can see it."

Tkacik's rendering of the SR-71 is based upon several photographs of the long-range Mach 3 reconnaissance aircraft. The plane is depicted high above the Earth with stars in the background and hangs 40 feet above the marble floor.

Research Highlights the Competition for Global Talent

As competition for talent heats up worldwide, UNC Charlotte researcher Qingfang Wang has identified critical factors that appear to give some communities a competitive edge.

Wang’s research considers highly skilled immigrants and immigrant entrepreneurs – what attracts them, what fosters their growth and what deters them from fully using their skills and knowledge.

"Obviously, highly skilled people are the major force in this new knowledge economy," said Wang, associate professor in the Department of Geography and Earth Sciences. “At the national and global level, I think this is really important to look into this issue in the context of this global competition.”