The Deep Foundations Institute announced winners of the group's Young Professor Paper Competition and Student Paper Competition.

Armin Stuedlin, Ph.D, P.E., of Oregon State University wins the Young Professor competition, and Hessam Yazdani, a Ph.D candidate in geotechnical engineering at the University of Oklahoma, winds the Student Paper competition.

Stuedlin's winning submission was “Factors Affecting Reliability-Based Serviceability Limit State Design of Augered Cast-in-Place Piles in Cohesionless Soil." Graduate student Seth Reddy helped prepare the paper. Stuedlin is Loosely Faculty Fellow and assistant professor of geotechnical engineering in OSU's School of Civil and Construction Engineering. He earned his Ph.D from the University of Washington, and holds a master's degree from Syracuse University and a bachelor's from State University of New York. His research interests focus on performance and reliability of geotechnical structures.

Runner-up for the Young Professor title was Kam Ng, an assistant professor in the University of Wyoming's Department of Civil and Architectural Engineering for the submission, “Towards a Performance-Based Design of Drilled Shafts.”

Yazdani's paper, “Optimization of Piled-Raft Foundations Considering Soil-Pile Raft Interaction," earned him the top spot in the student competition. He holds bachelor's and master's degrees in civil engineering from the University of Kerman, Iran. He relocated to the United States in 2011 to pursue his Ph.D. Research interest include simulations of random heterogeneous materials and application of innovative materials, as well as probabilistic, optimization and data mining methods in geotechnical engineering. He's authored more than 25 papers.

Fawad Niazi, a graduate research assistant at Georgia Institute of Technology, took first runner-up for the student competition for his paper, “A Review of the Design Formulations for Static Axial Response of Deep Foundations from CPT Data.”

Yazdani and Stuedlein will present their topic to attendees of the DFI's annual Conference on Deep Foundations on Sept. 28. All competition papers will be published in the *DFI Journal*.

Awards will be presented during a banquet Sept. 27 at the conference, which the group holds in Phoenix this year.

 The DFI is an international association of contractors, engineers, academics and suppliers in the deep foundations industry with more than 3,300 members worldwide. For more information about the Deep Foundations Institute, visit