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Yves Berthelot, a scientist listening to the world

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Yves Berthelot, Vice-Provost of Georgia Tech and President of the Georgia Tech-Lorraine Campus, is naturally curious, always looking for new opportunities and trying to experience new things—his passions, his academic training, and his current position are the proof.

Originally from Paris, where he still has family, Yves Berthelot is an avid violin player and was always fond of science. Upon entering the University of Technology of Compiègne to study engineering, his passion for music and desire to combine his interests led him to specialize in acoustics, sound, and ultrasound in physics. He thus combined pleasure with practicality and used his scientific training to expand his knowledge of the musical universe. This open-mindedness and the desire to explore new horizons are the driving forces in his life that have always guided his decisions.

To develop his knowledge in the field of sound, Yves Berthelot desired to find other approaches to the issue and decided to complete a degree in England and a Ph.D. in the United States. “My life has been partly determined by meeting outstanding people, including Dr. David Blackstock and Alan Pirce who have guided me from Southampton to Georgia Tech, with a stop in Austin.” After arriving as a researcher and assistant professor in Atlanta, the extraordinarily dynamic campus and exceptional working conditions in technology led him to remain at Georgia Tech, where he has worked for 25 years.

Yves Berthelot is an accomplished researcher and teacher who has received numerous awards for his research. In 1988 he received the award for “Presidential Young Investigator” from the National Science Foundation. He also received the Gold Medal of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. Finally, he won the Lindsay Award from the American Society of Acoustics in 1991. After receiving all of these awards, the real reward remains to be the satisfaction of his collective achievements and of seeing his influence on the people he trained throughout his career.

As a researcher and professor in mechanical engineering, Yves Berthelot worked with a large number of Ph.D. students and research students and is therefore very proud to see the success of his graduates. He is also invested in his projects as Vice-Provost of Georgia Tech and as the President of Georgia Tech-Lorraine, which he called “a fabulous opportunity that bridges France and the United States.” In 2005, he took leadership of the campus, which opened in 1990, exactly twenty years ago.

He visits Metz for one week each month, a city dear to him, where he lived with his family for three years. He admires the uniqueness of this institution that is more than just an exchange program, noting, “Georgia Tech Lorraine is a partnership of high education and research that offers great economic opportunities.” Furthermore, it has permitted him to fulfill his dream of “training and developing engineers who understand the global challenge.” Each year, approximately 200 American students pursuing a bachelor’s degree go to France and enrich their professional and academic experiences. Additionally, each year nearly 500 students go to the Metz campus to discover French and European research.

Today, Yves Berthelot is preparing the 20th anniversary of the great institution of Georgia Tech-Lorraine. This anniversary will be celebrated with much enthusiasm in Metz, June 14-16, 2010, with the visit of the President of Georgia Tech, Mr. Bud Peterson; a large delegation from the state of Georgia; and the Consul General of France in Atlanta, Mr. Pascal Le Deunff. He is also very much involved with the preparation of the « France-Atlanta » project, to be co-presented by the Consulate General of France in Atlanta and Georgia Tech at the end of the year.

Far from being satisfied of what he has already accomplished, he’s looking forward the new challenges of tomorrow, always in an effort to reinforce Franco-American relations in the South-eastern United States.

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