Alfred University News

Alumnus John Mauro ’01, ’06 PhD to present 2024 Scholes Lecture at Alfred University

Alfred University alumnus John Mauro ’01, ’06 PhD, will deliver the annual Scholes Lecture at Alfred University, on Thursday, April 4, at 11:20 a.m. in Holmes Auditorium, Harder Hall.

Mauro earned bachelor’s degrees in glass engineering science and computer science in 2001 and a doctoral degree in glass science in 2006, all from Alfred University, and is Dorothy Pate Enright Professor and Associate Head for Graduate Education in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at The Pennsylvania State University. In his lecture, titled “There and Back Again: A Journey in Glass,” Mauro will talk about his career as a glass scientist and educator and the role his time as a student at Alfred University prepared him for professional success.

“Glass is a lifelong passion for me, starting from my childhood in the Alfred-Almond area. In this presentation, I reflect on my personal journey in glass, from attending Scholes Lectures as a student at Alfred University through my return to Alfred today,” Mauro states in the abstract for his talk. “I share my thoughts about how my education at Alfred University prepared me for success as both an industrial research scientist at Corning Incorporated and later in academia as a Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at Penn State. I review several advances in glass physics and chemistry made during this time, including the development of new methods for designing and understanding industrial glass systems. I conclude with some thoughts about the pursuit of industrial vs. academic careers.”

Mauro joined the faculty at Penn State in 2017 and is a world-recognized expert in fundamental and applied glass science, statistical mechanics, computational and condensed matter physics, thermodynamics, and the topology of disordered networks. He came to Penn State from Corning Incorporated, which he joined in 1999 and served in multiple roles, including senior research manager of the Glass Research Department, where he led a group of 15 scientists and technicians in the development of new glass and glass-ceramic products.

He is the inventor or co-inventor of several new glass compositions for Corning, including Corning Gorilla® Glass products. He is a pioneer in the use of physics-based and machine learning models for the design of new glassy materials. Mauro is the inventor of new models for supercooled liquid and glass viscosity, glass structure and topology, relaxation behavior, and thermal and mechanical properties. He is co-author of Fundamentals of Inorganic Glasses, 3rd ed. (Elsevier, 2019), the definitive textbook on glass science and technology, and author of Materials Kinetics: Transport and Rate Phenomena (Elsevier, 2021), the most comprehensive textbook on kinetic phenomena in materials science.

Mauro was awarded the N.J. Kreidl Award (2006) from the American Ceramic Society (ACerS), Glass and Optical Materials Division. In 2010, Penn State University and the International Commission on Glass (ICG) awarded him the W.A. Weyl International Glass Science Award. In 2011, he received the V. Gottardi Prize from the ICG, and in 2012 he was selected as the inaugural recipient of the Sir Alastair Pilkington Award from the Society of Glass Technology.

In 2013, Mauro was awarded the S. Donald Stookey Award for Exploratory Research from Corning Incorporated. In 2015, he became a Fellow of the American Ceramic Society and was recipient of the R.M. Fulrath Award. In 2016, the National Institute of Ceramic Engineers (NICE) selected Mauro as winner of the Karl Schwartzwalder Professional Achievement in Ceramic Engineering (PACE) Award. More recently, he was elected as a Fellow of the Society of Glass Technology (2019) and is recipient of the Faculty of the Year Award (2019) at Penn State Materials Science and Engineering. He also won first place in the Penn State Tech Tournament (2023) for the invention of LionGlassTM, a novel glass family that lowers the carbon footprint of glass manufacturing by ~50% while significantly improving mechanical performance.

Mauro is the author of over 360 peer-reviewed publications and has given over 200 presentations at international conferences and seminars. His publications have been cited over 18,500 times, with an h-index of 60. John has 80 granted U.S. patents and several additional patents pending. He is editor-in-chief of Journal of the American Ceramic Society and is a Member of the National Academy of Engineering, the National Academy of Inventors, and the World Academy of Ceramics.

The Scholes Lecture Series was established in 1982 by alumni of Alfred University to honor the late Samuel R. Scholes, who in 1932 established the first glass science program in the United States at the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University. He served as dean, associate dean, head of the Department of Glass Technology, and professor of glass science.