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Engineering Education Expert Named New Jonsson School Dean
June 27, 2019
Dr. Stephanie G. Adams
Dr. Stephanie G. Adams, professor of engineering management and systems engineering at Old Dominion University and dean of its Frank Batten College of Engineering & Technology, will become the fifth dean of the Erik Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science on Aug. 1.
Adams, who holds a PhD in interdisciplinary engineering from Texas A&M University, serves as president of the American Society for Engineering Education. She earned a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering with honors from North Carolina A&T State University and a Master of Engineering in systems engineering from the University of Virginia. Her research interests include faculty and graduate student development, international collaborations, team effectiveness, collaborative and active learning, and quality control and management. Adams is a leader in efforts to broaden participation of women and underrepresented minorities in engineering.
From 2011 to 2016, Adams was professor and head of the Department of Engineering Education at Virginia Tech, where she worked with its then-dean of engineering, Dr. Richard C. Benson, now UT Dallas president.
“Throughout the interview process, I found a vibrant, rapidly growing and exciting environment, which left me more and more impressed with the school and the University,” Adams said. “I look forward to working with Provost [Inga] Musselman, President Benson, and the faculty, staff and students of the Jonsson School to continue the positive trajectory and growth.”
“Dr. Adams’ experience, passion for educating students, commitment to excellence and strong work ethic will provide the foundation for her leadership of the Jonsson School, whose progress is fundamental to the advancement of UT Dallas as a national research university.”
Before joining Virginia Tech, Adams held faculty appointments at Virginia Commonwealth University and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She served as program officer in the National Science Foundation (NSF) Division of Engineering Education and Centers from 2005 to 2007.
Adams was the recipient of a Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) award from the NSF in 2003 to support her goal of designing, developing and validating a model for the facilitation of effective teaming in the engineering classroom. She was selected as an American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Science and Technology Policy Fellow at the NSF in 2005.
“Dr. Adams is coming to UT Dallas after holding a series of significant appointments in higher education and government,” said Dr. Inga Musselman, UT Dallas provost, vice president for academic affairs and the Cecil H. Green Distinguished Chair of Academic Leadership. “Dr. Adams’ experience, passion for educating students, commitment to excellence and strong work ethic will provide the foundation for her leadership of the Jonsson School, whose progress is fundamental to the advancement of UT Dallas as a national research university.”
Adams’ appointment follows a national search after Dr. Mark W. Spong, Excellence in Education Chair and professor of systems engineering and electrical and computer engineering, resumed regular faculty duties in 2017 after serving nine years as dean of the Jonsson School. Dr. Poras Balsara, associate dean for academic affairs and professor of electrical and computer engineering, served as the school’s interim dean.
“Dr. Adams brings a wealth of experience to her role as dean of the Jonsson School,” Balsara said. “She has been involved in engineering education, so that might bring a different perspective to our school in terms of enhancing students’ academic experience.”