Yale Engineer Receives $500,000 Presidential Early Career Award

Peter N. Belhumeur, associate professor of electrical engineering at Yale University, has been awarded a $500,000 Presidential Early Career Award to support his research for the next five years in computer vision, robotics, face recognition, medical image analysis, and virtual environments. The award was given specifically for his innovative concepts and for forging interdisciplinary links to the physiology of human vision.

The award, which he received Nov. 3 at the White House, is the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on outstanding scientists and engineers who are beginning their independent careers. Only 20 scientists are chosen nationwide each year through the National Science Foundation.

Professor Belhumeur graduated in 1985 from Brown University with highest honors, receiving a Sc.B. degree in computer and information engineering. He received a master’s degree in 1991 and a Ph.D. degree in 1993, both from Harvard University, where he studied under a Harvard Fellowship. In 1994, he spent a half-year as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Cambridge’s Sir Isaac Newton Institute for Mathematical Sciences.

At Yale, he teaches courses on Signals and Systems, Pattern and Object Recognition, and Computer Vision. He is a member of the Yale Center for Computational Vision and Control and a member of the Army Research Center for Imaging Science. He has published more than 20 papers on image processing and computational vision.

He also has received a National Science Foundation Career Award and a Yale University Junior Faculty Fellowship for the Natural Sciences. He recently won the IEEE – Institute of Electrical Engineers and Engineering – Best Paper Award for his work on characterizing the set of images of an object under variable illumination.

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