Welcome to a new school year in the College of Engineering at UTSA! I hope that every one of you had a fun and productive summer season and are ready to lead the next generation of engineers through another year of great achievements in the classroom, national and international competitions, community service, and professional development. The energy in the College is running very high this fall as conveyed at our Fall Convocation, Alumni Gala, New Faculty Dinner with the President, and first meeting of the College of Engineering Student Council. Engineering Roadrunners are ready to run!
There are many exciting new developments that will be introduced throughout this year, including new faculty, facilities, research, student initiatives, and programs. This letter introduces a new format of monthly communication from the Dean’s Office which will include a brief overview of a topic of interest for our faculty, staff, and students, followed by general announcements and reports from our faculty-led committees. Brief is the key word, and in that spirit let us begin…
The COE Student Success Center
By now you have probably heard about it, and perhaps have even walked through the second floor of the Engineering Building to see it, and I am happy to announce that the COE Student Success Center (SSC) is fully up and running! This semester, our students are benefiting from the full services of the SSC which opened its doors officially this fall. The SSC acts as an umbrella organization to cultivate academic and professional success for all engineering students – freshmen through seniors – through multiple programs and services as described below:
· Ambassador Program – leadership program for up to 30 nominated engineering students who represent the college at various functions, and fill key functions of service in the college and in the San Antonio community.
· Toyota Ambassador Program – select Ambassadors, sponsored by Toyota Motor Manufacturing Texas, who commit to mentoring a K-12 FIRST Robotics team through team-building, design, construction and competition.
· Leadership Academy – leadership program for up to 150 engineering student leaders that provides training in leadership and management skills including building a team, financial and resource management, and human resource management.
· WIN (Work Intern Network) – open to all engineering students, WIN builds professional skills development including networking, resume building, mock interviews, etiquette skills, and more. The ultimate goal is for every engineering student to have an internship before graduation.
· GEN E (Generation Engineering) – building a culture of Excellence in Engineering by engaging each cohort of engineering students (1st year through 4th year) in cohort-specific college and engineering experiences.
· Tutoring Center – general hours of operation provide tutoring on demand for all engineering students. This semester a pilot program is in place to provide special tutoring sessions for key concepts identified by professors teaching courses that have a traditionally lower rate of student success.
· International programs – service to students seeking international study opportunities and promotion of faculty-led programs.
· Student Organizations – the heart and soul of the college, our student organizations provide leadership, community service, and team-building opportunities for all engineering students. The SSC focuses on creating a self-governing student organization leadership that manages student resources and includes participation of engineering students from all cohorts.
Look for more information about the SSC and its activities throughout the year on the COE web page, social media, monitors in the 2nd floor of the Engineering Building, and posted throughout engineering spaces. Additionally, we will be hosting a SSC Open House on September 8. Keep your eyes out for the official invitation!
Announcements – New Faculty
The College of Engineering welcomes a world-class group of new engineering faculty this year as listed below. Please take time to introduce yourself and welcome our new colleagues to the engineering family!
Dr. Sara Ahmed, Power Electronics, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Dr. Ethan Ahn, Energy-Efficient Materials, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Dr. Wei Gao, Bioinspired Materials, Department of Mechanical Engineering
Dr. Wassim Ghannoum, Structural Engineering, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Dr. Lyle Hood, Drug Delivery and Medical Devices, Department of Mechanical Engineering
Dr. Vikram Kapoor, Environmental, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Dr. Jeff Prevost, Cloud Computing, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Dr. Christopher Rathbone, Tissue Regeneration, Department of Biomedical Engineering
Dr. Brendy Rincon-Troconis, Corrosion Engineering, Department of Mechanical Engineering
The new structure that was created last year for COE Faculty Committees is shown below, with the appointed faculty retaining membership for a 2nd year (the College Faculty Review Advisory Committee is omitted because it will not be fully populated until September 12). At the end of this academic year, half of the current membership will retire and replacements with 2-year terms will be named, and the following year the remaining 2016-17 members will retire and be replaced in a similar manner. The committees are currently being charged, and future COE Newsletters will include updates on their specific plans and activities.
JoAnn Browning, Ph.D., P.E.
Dean of College of Engineering
David and Jennifer Spencer Distinguished Chair
One UTSA Circle
University of Texas at San Antonio
San Antonio, TX 78249