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Doreen Edwards, Ph.D., who has been associate dean of the Kazuo Inamori School of Engineering at Alfred University, will become dean of the school effective July 1, 2009. She is the first woman to be appointed to the position.
In announcing Edwards’s appointment, Suzanne Buckley, Ph.D., provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, said, “Dr. Edwards will bring her success in academe and industry to leadership of the school. As associate dean, she has proven herself to be a talented administrator who is committed to leading the school to its next level of excellence and to building internal and external partnerships.“
Edwards, Buckley noted, will build upon her an excellent reputation as a teacher and researcher, as well as her familiarity with the university. “Her experience in all those areas will serve us well as we move forward with several initiatives, including implementation of both the university’s and the school’s strategic plans; creation of a high-temperature materials testing laboratory with a $4 million grant obtained from New York State; and preparing for the renewal of national (ABET) accreditation of our engineering programs.”
“This is an exciting time for engineering at Alfred,” said Edwards. “I am looking forward to this opportunity to lead the Kazuo Inamori School of Engineering to its next level of excellence.” The school, she noted, is “well-poised to become a leader in innovative engineering education because of our small size and devotion to student-centered education.”
The search committee is “confident Dr. Edwards can lead the School of Engineering to further growth and prosperity. She has a natural talent for leadership, as well as a record of excellence in both research and teaching,” said Scott Misture, Ph.D., chair of the committee and professor of materials science.
Edwards has been associate dean of the School of Engineering since 2007, and had been director of graduate engineering programs for the school from 2003-2007. After joining the Alfred University faculty in 1997 as an assistant professor of materials science and engineering, she earned promotions to associate professor in 2003 and to full professor in 2007.
Edwards has received accolades for her teaching, including an Excellence in Teaching Award from Alfred University in 2002; the John F. McMahon Excellence in Teaching Award in 2004; and the State University of New York Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching, also in 2004. As a researcher, Edwards’ interests include materials for electrical, optical and energy-conversion applications, such as solid oxide fuel cells, batteries, sensors, thermoelectric devices, concentrated solar power, and solid-state lighting.
She received a prestigious CAREER grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) in 2001 and currently has an NSF-funded project in collaboration with researchers at the National University of Singapore and Ural State University in Russia. Edwards has also obtained research funding through the New York State Center for Advanced Ceramic Technology, the Center for Environmental and Energy Research at Alfred University, the U.S. Department of Energy and several industrial partners.
Edwards’ work has resulted in more than 45 publications, numerous presentations and two U.S. patents. She has advised six doctoral students, including three current students; 11 master’s students, including two current students; and more than 30 undergraduate theses projects since 1998.
Prior to coming to Alfred, Edwards was a research assistant and teaching assistant at Northwestern University of Chicago, where she earned a doctorate degree in materials science and engineering in 1997. After earning a bachelor’s of science degree in chemistry from the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology in 1985, Edwards was a research scientist at Gould, Inc., in Rolling Meadows, Ill., from 1985-1987. She then joined Northwestern University’s Basic Research Laboratory as a research scientist for six years prior to entering the graduate program.
Buckley commended the work of the search committee, whose members in addition to Misture were Mathew Hall, Ph.D., associate professor of biomedical materials engineering science; Patricia LaCourse, associate librarian, Scholes Library of Ceramics; Roger Loucks, Ph.D., associate professor of physics, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Nathan Mellott, Ph.D., assistant professor of glass science; Joseph Rosiczkowski, Ph.D., professor of mechanical engineering; and Linda Sikora, professor of ceramic art, School of Art & Design.
Visit www.alfred.edu for more information.