UAB Begins National Search for BME Chair
Timothy Wick, Ph.D., the longtime chair of the Department of Biomedical Engineering, has accepted a new position in the SOE Dean’s Office as the Senior Associate Dean. Wick’s responsibilities in this new role include facilitating research throughout the school by working closely with all five departments to expand the school’s research portfolio while also increasing the potential for interdisciplinary collaborations between departments and other schools, as well as with outside industry.
“Over the past 10 years, Dr. Wick has shown a unique capacity for building multi-disciplinary research teams through his role as chair of the Department of Biomedical Engineering,” says SOE Dean Iwan Alexander, Ph.D. “As we look to expand our research portfolio across all our departments, we need someone with experience in identifying opportunities to ensure that we grow our research funding while continuing to make the most use of the strengths we already have in place.”
As part of this transition, Alan Eberhardt, Ph.D., will move from the Dean’s Office to the Department of Biomedical Engineering. Already a longtime professor of the BME Department, Eberhardt will also be devoting time to a new position as director of the Industrial Scholars Program, a school-wide master of engineering program to be launched in the coming fall semester.
McCrory Steps Down after 14 Years in the Dean's Office
Visitors to the School of Engineering may not notice anything different in 2015, but to those who work behind the scenes in the Dean’s Office, the new year will be a time of transition. Jason McCrory, the school’s longtime director of administrative and fiscal affairs, retired at the end of 2014 after more than 14 years with the School of Engineering and nearly 25 years at UAB.
McCrory’s responsibilities in the Dean’s Office included many important aspects of the school’s daily operations, including safety, facilities, construction, finances, grants management, compliance, and human resources.
“I am very grateful for all that Jason has done for me and for the School of Engineering,” says SOE Dean Iwan Alexander, Ph.D. “While I am excited for his plans for the future, I am sorry to lose someone who has contributed so much to UAB. In addition to his very important responsibilities of minding the school’s purse strings, Jason has worked hard behind the scenes.”
In an engineering career that spans nearly 40 years, Rosalia (Rose) Scripa, Ph.D., has gone from studying ceramics in upstate New York to growing crystals in outer space. During that time, she found a home and built a national and international reputation at the UAB School of Engineering. This fall, Scripa retired from UAB after 38 years as a teacher, researcher, and administrator at the school and university levels.
"Dr. Scripa has done much for the School of Engineering and her department since becoming the school's first female faculty member in 1976," says Iwan Alexander, Ph.D., dean of the School of Engineering. "She has accomplished a lot in a variety of roles. She will definitely be remembered all across the UAB campus for her dedicated efforts as an administrator, teacher, researcher, and mentor."
The wide variety of roles and experiences Scripa has had during her career makes it difficult to pinpoint any defining factor of her time at UAB. For example, the list of her honors and awards fills several pages and includes the University of Florida's Alumna of Outstanding Achievement Award (1997), the UAB Ellen Gregg Ingalls/National Alumni Society Award for Lifetime Achievement in Teaching (2007), and the United Cultural Convention's International Woman of the Year (2012), to name a few.
Engineering students will have opportunities in 2015 to explore the past, present, and future of engineering materials from a global perspective through an intensive three-week course.
The course will be conducted at sites in Germany where participants will see how materials were used over the past several centuries of civilization. In addition, UAB engineering students and their German counterparts will explore other aspects of European culture while earning three hours of engineering course credit.
Students will also receive German language instruction while there and will receive one hour credit for "study abroad German" (GN 190).
"The purpose of this class is to explore how technology influenced the ways societies used materials over time," says Amber Genau, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering. "For example, Cologne, Germany was an outpost of the Roman Empire, so when you visit historical sites in Cologne, you can see that they used copper, glass, and iron for different things. What factored into their decisions to choose certain materials?"
In addition to engineering knowledge, Genau says she expects her students to engage their German counterparts with discussions of sustainability, technology, and education. "It was very important for me as an undergraduate to travel abroad and develop a deeper appreciation for other cultures," Genau says. "To me, the exposure to different perspectives is a valuable component to education that often gets overlooked."