RPI sees new appointments to departments, administration

Over the last couple of months, Rensselaer has seen new individuals selected as heads of various departments, as well as the hire of a new acting vice president.

On June 20, President Shirley Ann Jackson announced the appointment of Allison Newman to the position of acting vice president of Strategic Communications and External Relations. “The acting vice president for Strategic Communications and External Relations reports directly to the president and is responsible for advancing public understanding and advocacy for Rensselaer, its educational opportunities and research discoveries, and its growing position of importance in science, technology, and public policy,” said Jackson. Allison previously served as associate vice president of Strategic Communications and External Relations and director of community Relations before that. She holds her current position following the retirement of William Walker.

Nearly a month later, on July 17, John Wen was named head of the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering. “ISE has a history of excellence and success in education, research impact, and preparing students to be the technological leaders of tomorrow,” said Provost Prabhat Hajela. “I am confident John will guide the department to continued recognition and new heights in the coming years. We are thrilled to welcome him to this new role.” Wen joined RPI in 1988 and has served as the director of the Center for Automation Technologies and Systems. According to assistant director of News and Editorial Services Michael Mullaney, “Wen succeeds Charles Malmborg, who led ISE as department head since 2007 and is stepping down to continue his teaching and research as a member of the Rensselaer faculty.”

A week later, it was announced that Juergen Hahn would be the new head of the Department of Biomedical Engineering. “His leadership skills, and an unwavering passion for excellence in education and research, will be critically important as the department continues to grow its faculty and enrollment, and broadens its impact on the field,” said Hajela. Hahn joined RPI in 2012 and immediately began research with the School of Engineering. “Hahn succeeds Deepak Vashishth, who served as head of BME since 2009 and was recently named director of the Rensselaer Center for Biotechnology and Interdisciplinary Studies,” explained Mullaney.

On July 31, Jackson released an e-mail stating that Joe Chow would serve as the administrative dean for the School of Engineering. “Dr. Chow, a tenured full professor in the School of Engineering, joined Rensselaer in 1987, and served as acting chair of the Electrical, Computer, and Systems Engineering Department from 1999 to 2000, and as associate dean of research from 2003 to 2010,” said Jackson. Chow’s appointment follows the departure of David Rosowsky, who was hired by the University of Vermont to serve as provost and senior vice president.

For more information about new positions, visit the RPI News & Events website, http://news.rpi.edu/.