The United States President Donald Trump announced on August 3, 2020, that the Ethiopian American Professor at Savannah State University Mulatu Lemma (Ph. D.) was one of the recipients of this year’s Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics, and Mentoring (PAESMEM).
The award presented by the White House honors high achievers in teaching science, technology, engineering, and mathematics since 1995.
Mulatu became the recipient of the prestigious presidential award along with 12 individuals and three organizations after he spent 25 years mentoring mathematics at Savannah State University.
According to the statement by the PAESMEM, Mulatu’s achievement in increasing the number of underrepresented groups in mathematics with mentoring them to succeed in school has made him one of the recipients of the award.
“[What he has done] was not possible without his committed effort…he believes that active mentoring programs produce a new generation of mathematically-skilled students,” reads the statement.
“He encourages and helps undergraduate students to engage in research and present or publish their papers in journals,” the statement added.
Mulatu has so far mentored students whose age ranges from 12 to 63 to have confidence, self-esteem, and research experience. In 2019 he managed to monitor 14 students whose papers were finally accepted to be published in peer-reviewing journals in the U.S.
Before joining Savannah state university, Mulatu taught in Ethiopia for five years in Awash College. He graduated from Addis Ababa University with B.S in mathematics and got his doctorate in pure mathematics from Kent State University.
Besides the recent honor from the U.S president, Mulatu received multiple honors such as in 2010; he was named Distinguished Professor at Savannah State University, in 2013 Georgia Professor of the Year, and the 2019 Marquis Who’s Who Top Educator in teaching research and mentoring.