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Scranton selected as UI engineering dean

BY JENNY EARL | APRIL 03, 2012 6:30 AM

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University of Iowa officials announced on Monday that Alec Scranton will serve as dean of the UI College of Engineering.

As dean, he said, he intends to further expand the school both physically and in the number of students.

"We're growing, and we want to continue that growth," he said

Scranton, 48, served as the college's interim dean following P. Barry Butler's appointment as UI provost in October 2011. The state Board of Regents will have to approve his new position.

In the new position, Scranton's salary will be $305,000, an increase from $287,709 as interim dean.
Butler said Scranton's dedication to the school demonstrates his leadership capabilities.

"He has proven during his time as associate dean, department chair, and interim dean to be an effective leader," Butler said. "He is an inventor with more than 10 patents to his name, his teaching record is outstanding, and he is well respected by his peers."

With Scranton's understanding of engineering education, Butler said, he expects to see the UI engineering school grow in partnerships as well in the coming years.

"He understands the importance of interdisciplinary research and will continue to grow partnerships with other units at the UI," Butler said.

UI mechanical engineering Professor Christoph Beckermann said he thinks Scranton will continue to help the college increase its enrollment, increase the number of faculty numbers, get additional research funding, and perhaps acquire an additional building.

Scranton said he would like to see plans for a new building, but so far, no such plans have been approved.

However, the need for a new building may grow as long as the engineering-student population continues to grow. The school has around 1,670 students, an increase of roughly 500 since 2008.

Scranton said he feels the school has all the elements required for success.

"I'm honored and excited to be appointed dean of the College of Engineering at the University of Iowa," he said. "I've been here for 12 years, and I know that we have a talented and dedicated faculty and staff, outstanding students, and alumni engaged in the college — it's just a great place to be at — it has all the elements required for success."

Scranton said his vision is defined by research, education, and engagement and outreach. The school under his leadership will seek to improve the undergraduate experience by re-evaluating the curriculum.

Three other finalists competed with Scranton for the position, interviewed on the UI campus by a search committee led by Rita Frantz, the dean of the College of Nursing.

"I'm excited that he made it through a difficult search process and that he came out on top out of a large pool of applicants, and I think that clearly speaks to the high regard we all have for him," Beckermann said.


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