UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Yuqing Hu, a researcher who specializes in building systems engineering and building information modeling, will join the Penn State College of Engineering’s Department of Architectural Engineering (AE) as assistant professor on July 1 with an affiliation with the Penn State Institute for Computational and Data Sciences.
Hu is the latest addition to the department’s construction option area group. Below, she introduces her work and background to the academic community.
What is your planned research focus with Penn State AE?
Hu: I plan to conduct research and training on interdependent systems coordination in the built environment for construction projects and infrastructure systems. Using building information modeling (BIM) and artificial intelligence, I will build an intelligent coordination system that proactively and continuously checks constraint consistency to avoid coordination issues and improve design constructability and safety.
I also plan to develop a digital twin for infrastructure applications with elements that reflect interdependency and interconnectedness in order to upgrade infrastructure systems for smart cities. Finally, I will conduct interdisciplinary research to address the socio-technical system to promote digital innovations in construction and shape the future of construction.
What is your planned teaching focus?
Hu: I plan to teach courses related to construction management and BIM. In accord with my research focus, I also look forward to developing new courses related to construction information management and artificial intelligence in construction.
Have you received any prior awards or research grants?
Hu: I won the Best Paper Award for the Computer Applications and Simulation, Technology and Data Analytics Track at the American Society of Civil Engineers’ Construction Research Congress 2020.
What is your educational background?
Hu: I am a doctoral candidate in building construction at the Georgia Institute of Technology and will graduate in May 2020. I also received a master’s degree in computational science and engineering from Georgia Tech in August 2019. Before joining Georgia Tech, I received a master’s degree in management science and engineering and a bachelor’s degree in engineering management at Tongji University in Shanghai, China.
Do you have any prior experience in academia or industry?
Hu: At Georgia Tech, I worked as a teaching assistant and as an instructor in BIM courses for graduate and undergraduate students for two years. I combined online and face-to-face instruction methods to improve my students’ learning. In addition, I coordinated and taught a summer workshop on BIM for 20 international students. Before I joined Georgia Tech, I worked for the Shanghai Disney Resort project for two years to analyze the cost and benefit of BIM applications.
Why have you decided to come to Penn State AE? What are you most looking forward to?
Hu: The Penn State AE department is top ranked in the world due to its excellent faculty and students. I still remember the conversations I had with AE faculty members when I interviewed; they are so creative and supportive. I can imagine working with them in the future to shape and transform the construction industry. Everything seems possible at Penn State. In addition, the AE department at Penn State emphasizes interdisciplinary research and education, which fits well with my diverse background of integrating construction and computer science. I believe this match can help me to achieve a successful academic career at Penn State and contribute to the future of Penn State.