Published: Oct. 3, 2018

Engineering faculty presented international honorary doctorate

Contact(s): Patricia Mroczek College of Engineering office: (517) 432-1303

Recognizing his 50 years of leading-edge research in pattern recognition, the Autonomous University of Madrid, or UAM, honored Michigan State University’s Anil Jain with an honorary doctorate.

Jain is the first honorary doctorate recipient for the university’s engineering program.

“It was a pleasure and honor especially significant and long-awaited for being the first Doctorate Honoris Causa proposed since the creation of our engineering school and, specifically, the Department of Electronic Technology and Communications,” said Javier Ortega, vice-rector of innovation, transfer and technology at UAM and a distinguished professor at the Superior Polytechnic School.

Jain, University Distinguished Professor of computer science and engineering and member of the National Academy of Engineering, is a global expert in biometric and pattern recognition.

In 1969, he began transferring codes to cards punched on an IBM 360, which was the beginning of his five-decade journey investigating the recognition of patterns. Advances in fingerprint recognition – such as that on the iPhone – and other biometric identification modes are translating into real success stories today, Jain said in his acceptance speech.

Jain received the honorary doctorate at the initiative of the Department of Electronic Technology and Communications of the Higher Polytechnic School, which included members from university communities in Spain, Portugal, Holland, Canada and the United Kingdom.

In accepting the academic honor, Jain congratulated UAM for its 50th anniversary noting, “It is a coincidence that I began my career in the field of research at the time that La Autónoma was born.”