Barbara and Jack Davis Hall is a $61-million, LEED Gold designed facility that houses 130,000 square feet of laboratory and classroom space for the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

About the Position

The University at Buffalo (UB) invites inquiries, nominations, and applications for the position of dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS). A member of the Association of American Universities (AAU), UB is a flagship institution in the State University of New York (SUNY) system and a widely respected center for academic excellence. The dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences will be a senior member of the university’s leadership team, working collaboratively with the university’s president, provost and other deans to advance the university’s ambitious vision for excellence in teaching, research, and engagement. The new dean will oversee a period of significant growth in the school, as envisioned in the university’s UB 2020 strategic plan and supported by the state’s NYSUNY 2020 legislation and challenge grant, which provide the university with critical tools to engage in long-range planning and institutional development across the disciplines.

The Opportunity

The dean is the chief academic and administrative officer of the school, reporting to the provost and executive vice president for academic affairs. The dean is responsible for providing overall leadership to the school to promote academic excellence and advance its national and international prominence in research, and graduate and undergraduate education. The ideal candidate will be an individual of integrity, an intellectual leader among the faculty, an advocate for the school and the university, a creative problem solver, an energetic and engaged partner in building and enhancing relationships with the school’s many constituencies and the local community, and a skilled and conscientious administrator.

Specifically, candidates should demonstrate experience and a vision for progress in the following areas:

Development and execution of strategic plans: The University continues to develop its strategic plans through UB2020, aided by the tools and support provided by the NYSUNY 2020 legislation and challenge grant. The dean will help define and articulate the specific strategies and provisions for SEAS within these ongoing plans, and enable their execution to ensure the school is recognized for its exceptional research and educational programs and to identify a path for the school’s long-term success.

Education and outreach: The dean promotes the school’s educational activities, establishes innovative programming, and ensures appropriate accreditation is maintained. SEAS participates significantly in international research and education activities, and the new dean will be expected to expand these opportunities. The dean is responsible for managing the school’s relationships with local and national corporate organizations, advancing SEAS interactions with industry partners, and furthering technology transfer and partnerships as appropriate.

Stewardship and development: The dean represents SEAS to internal and external constituents, as well as national and international groups. In cooperation with the university development and alumni groups, the dean is responsible for alumni relations, and is expected to devote substantial effort in development activities in order generate additional resources for the school in implementing the university’s goals for increasing endowments and philanthropic giving.

Personnel appointments: The dean is responsible to the provost for the recruitment, appointment, promotion and tenure of faculty in SEAS. The dean works with the faculty through established SEAS appointment, promotion and tenure processes to ensure the integrity of the processes, to promote diversity within the faculty, and to maintain the highest standards of quality. The dean is also responsible for all staff and support personnel appointments.

Budget and administration: The dean is responsible to the provost for all aspects of the SEAS budget process as established through the university’s budget allocation model. The dean is responsible for working with the senior administration to facilitate extramural research funding, graduate enrollment and education, and space planning and facilities needs. The dean works with the provost and the vice president for research and economic development to promote and assist in the funding and support of SEAS research centers and institutes.

The School of Engineering and Applied Sciences


The School of Engineering and Applied Sciences is a local, national and global leader, serving the educational and research needs of a changing world, providing students with effective and high quality undergraduate, graduate and continuing education, and faculty with a research environment conducive to the highest levels of academic excellence. Integral to the school’s mission is an infrastructure of expertise and facilities that supports research, professional education, and advanced degree programs in important areas of engineering and applied science.

Founded in 1946, SEAS has grown to be the largest public engineering school in New York, and is home to approximately 2,600 undergraduate students, 1,200 graduate students, and 147 full time faculty members. Annual research expenditures for 2010, as reported to the NSF HERD survey, exceeded $61M. SEAS is composed of seven departments—Biomedical Engineering; Chemical and Biological Engineering; Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering; Computer Science and Engineering; Electrical Engineering; Industrial and Systems Engineering; Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering—and many affiliated research centers and laboratories.

The school occupies six buildings on the university’s North Campus, with more than 275,000 square feet of laboratory, classroom and office space, including Barbara and Jack Davis Hall, the new $75 million home of the departments of Computer Science and Engineering and Electrical Engineering and related interdisciplinary research centers. Dedicated in May 2012, the award-winning sustainable design and state of the art facilities of Davis Hall will position the school for even greater success in nanotechnology, pattern recognition, bio-based security systems and other fields of research.


The SEAS faculty is known for its outstanding teaching, scholarship and research. Numerous members of the faculty have received prestigious national and international honors, including the President's National Medal of Science, membership in the National Academy of Engineering and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and National Science Foundation and Office of Naval Research early career awards. The faculty includes three endowed professorships, four SUNY distinguished professors (the highest rank within the SUNY system) and three emeritus distinguished professors, five current or emeritus SUNY distinguished teaching or service professors, and more than 20 winners of SUNY chancellor’s awards for excellence in teaching or scholarship and creative activity. Dozens of faculty members are active as editors or editorial board members of scholarly publications, and as fellows of professional societies.

The full-time faculty includes 142 tenured or tenure-track positions and five teaching faculty. The total of 147 full-time faculty represents a growth of over 10% in the past 5 years, with significant additional faculty growth expected as a part of the UB 2020 plan.

Harvey Stenger, a chemical engineer who served as SEAS dean from 2006 through 2011 left UB in January 2012 to become the president of Binghamton University.


The University at Buffalo is implementing a long-range strategic vision—known as UB 2020—focused on pursuing sustained research and educational excellence, achieving greater efficiency across campus operations, and expanding the university’s engagement and impact locally, as well as globally. The UB 2020 vision is focused on building academic excellence through investments in areas that have strategic societal importance and the potential for UB to excel. An important element of UB 2020 has been to strengthen the faculty ranks and to increase the intellectual capacity of collaborative, cross-disciplinary faculty research teams dedicated to addressing the critical issues, ideas and challenges facing the 21st century. UB’s strategic strengths initiative is the signature interdisciplinary research initiative that brings together existing faculty expertise with investment in world-class new hires and resources that promise to give UB a preeminent leadership role for years to come in research that will transform lives and communities.

The SEAS faculty has a longstanding tradition as an active research group creating cutting-edge engineering and applied science knowledge, and plays a major role in contributing to four of the eight interdisciplinary strategic strengths identified by UB 2020. SEAS faculty members have approximately 240 actively funded sponsored research projects in the current academic year. The school’s total research expenditures for 2010, as reported to the NSF HERD survey, exceeded $61M, placing its per-faculty research expenditure in the top 10 percent of U.S. engineering schools, according to NSF-collected data.

Of particular note is the recent New York State designation of the New York State Center of Excellence in Materials Informatics at UB, with seed funding to be included in 2012-13 state budget. SEAS is expected to play a central role in this new center that will use robotics and data-intensive computing technology to focus on discovery and commercialization of innovative new materials, including synthetic replacements for natural elements that are growing scarcer. With the creation of the center, UB will be positioned nationally to hire additional faculty and pursue federal funding opportunities in this emerging and high-demand field. The center will foster increased collaboration between the university and industry, giving Western New York companies a competitive advantage and potentially creating thousands of jobs.

Listed below are just some of the examples of SEAS-based or affiliated research centers or projects in which the engineering faculty is central or active.

SEAS centers:

Affiliated centers:

UB’s Office of Science, Technology Transfer and Economic Outreach (STOR) is the interface between the inventive work of laboratory research and the applied commercial development that brings the benefits of that work to market. Its three divisions—Intellectual Property, Funding, and Commercialization—provide business leaders, researchers, and entrepreneurs with access to extensive resources and expertise.


The student body in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences is talented and diverse. In recent years, SEAS undergraduate students have consistently been honored with prestigious national awards, including Goldwater and Udall scholarships, and NSF and Department of Defense fellowships for graduate studies. SEAS graduates are highly regarded and much sought after for positions in academia and industry, with doctoral students hired into faculty positions at the nation’s top-ranked engineering schools.

Current enrollment in SEAS is approximately 2,600 undergraduate students, 1,200 graduate students. In 2011, SEAS conferred a total of 466 bachelor’s degrees, 461 master’s degrees, and 67 doctoral degrees.

Across its seven departments, and in collaboration with other faculties in the university, SEAS offers a wide variety of degree options at the undergraduate and graduate level. SEAS collaborates in innovative trans-disciplinary educational initiatives, such as the recent creation of the Department of Biomedical Engineering, a partnership between the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and the School of Medicine and Biomedical sciences. As part of the provost’s “3E” initiative (Excellence, Engagement and Efficiency), SEAS and the College of Arts and Sciences have forged an alliance to create a joint graduate degree and research program in Materials Science and Engineering. In addition to on-campus education, SEAS was a pioneer in the area of distance education, through its EngiNet™ program,

Like the University at Buffalo, SEAS is a leader in international education. In addition to enrollment from New York and many other states, the SEAS undergraduate and graduate student body includes students from 62 countries outside of the U.S. Undergraduate and graduate students have the opportunity to study abroad at more than 80 universities in approximately 30 countries, through a variety of program offerings, with participation rates in study abroad programs measuring approximately five times the national average in higher education.

SEAS provides a variety of unique and specialized services to enhance the educational experiences of its undergraduate and graduate students, through such programs as paid industry co-operative experiences, senior internships, and the Engineering Career Institute (ECI) that provides career effectiveness skills training to upper-level undergraduates. One especially noteworthy program at the undergraduate level is the Student Excellence Initiative, which starts in the freshman year, and is designed to help all students achieve their academic potential and build supportive relationships with their peers and the faculty. Offering students a variety of programs including structured study groups, individual tutoring, and faculty-student mentorships, the initiative has demonstrably contributed to student academic outcomes and retention.

SEAS is characterized by a sense of community, in which faculty, undergraduate and graduate students engage in shared intellectual and extracurricular pursuits. The school is home to dozens of student clubs and organizations, many of which regularly compete and earn high honors in a variety of national and international engineering competitions.


The School of Engineering and Applied Sciences has a longstanding tradition of active engagement with a wide array of external partners.

SEAS enjoys fruitful affiliations with local industry through participation in shared research efforts, opportunities for internships and employment for SEAS students, mutual guest speaker and presentation opportunities, and the annual Partners Day that highlights how UB works with individuals and organizations across Western New York to improve the region's quality of life.

Valuable consulting services are provided to external partners by The Center for Industrial Effectiveness (TCIE), and Strategic Partnership for Industrial Resurgence (SPIR), both housed within SEAS. TCIE connects the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences with hundreds of businesses and organizations annually with a goal of helping them to improve their overall enterprise performance. SPIR assists local and state companies with renewing, revitalizing, and redirecting industry.

SEAS is a leader in the local community in helping pre-college students explore engineering-related career opportunities. Since 1982, the school has sponsored the Buffalo-area Engineering Awareness for Minorities (BEAM) program, a nationally recognized year-round program that promotes engineering, math, science, and technical educational excellence for underrepresented school-age youth. SEAS partners with the American Association of University Women to host the annual Tech Savvy program to inspire middle-school girls to pursue careers in STEM fields. In addition, the school also sponsors or partners with others to present a variety of other school year and summer programs and workshops.

The sense of community in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences also extends to its more than 25,000 alumni, who live in all 50 states and more than 52 countries. SEAS alumni include many prominent and accomplished individuals working in industry, government, and academia as researchers, entrepreneurs, CEOs, astronauts, inventors and more. SEAS benefits greatly from its active and supportive Dean’s Advisory Council, comprised of approximately 25 alumni, friends, and business leaders who assist the school in achieving its goals by providing support and advice in several key areas, including industrial relations, long term planning and strategy, development, education and professional identity, new programs and placement.

UB Overview

Impactful research, scholarly distinction, transformative student experiences and far-reaching service to local, state, national and international communities define UB’s mission. UB was founded in 1846 as the University of Buffalo, a private medical college located in downtown Buffalo. UB joined SUNY in 1962 and is, today, the largest, most comprehensive research-intensive university within the 64-campus SUNY system, and its primary center for professional education and training. UB enrolls close to 29,000 students (approximately 2/3 undergraduate and 1/3 graduate and professional students), and offers nearly 400 degree programs at the baccalaureate, master’s, professional and doctoral levels across its 12 decanal units.

UB boasts a distinguished faculty of approximately 1,550 full-time members and more almost 650 part-time members. With more than 100 research centers and institutes, UB’s current annual research expenditures, including affiliated institutions, are approximately $353 million. The libraries hold 4 million volumes in seven major units and an exceptionally wide array of digital information resources.

UB is a global community of scholars, consistently ranking among the nation’s top 10-20 universities for the enrollment of international students. UB’s current international enrollment is 19% of the overall student body. The university also enjoys a strong international presence, maintaining affiliation agreements with over 80 universities in Asia, Europe, Latin America, and Africa.

Recognizing the key role that a vibrant 21st-century physical campus environment plays in enhancing education, research and learning, UB is implementing a long-range plan for making its North, South and Downtown campus spaces more functional, beautiful and sustainable. UB’s North Campus, located in the Buffalo suburb of Amherst, is the university’s main undergraduate campus, and home to the university’s primary athletics and cultural facilities. Three miles to the south, on the northern edge of the City of Buffalo, is the university’s historical South Campus, which serves as the primary health sciences campus. Over the past seven years, UB has seen a rapidly developing third campus center in downtown Buffalo, a manifestation of the UB 2020 vision for the university’s future. The focal point of UB’s downtown presence is the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, on which UB’s new medical school facility will be constructed in proximity to the university’s health and life science partners.

With annual revenues of almost $1.2 billion from all sources, UB and its affiliated entities generate an estimated economic impact of $1.7 billion annually in the state and region.

The university’s total workforce of almost 6,400 full-time equivalent employees makes it one of the region’s largest employers. UB is also a leader and an active partner with the more than 20 public and private colleges and universities in the Buffalo Niagara region. 

UB leadership

President Satish K. Tripathi

Internationally recognized as an accomplished researcher and transformative higher education leader, Dr. Satish K. Tripathi was appointed the 15th president of the University at Buffalo on April 18, 2011. His vision for UB’s future focuses on moving the university into the highest ranks of the nation’s leading research universities through expanding its reach and impact locally, as well as globally.

Dr. Tripathi, who served as UB’s provost and executive vice president for academic affairs from 2004-11, was one of the principal creators of the UB 2020 strategic plan to achieve academic research excellence, and has led the university to achieve significant growth in research and scholarly activity, enhanced student quality and diversity, and an expanded international presence.  As UB’s provost, Dr. Tripathi led the recruitment of many prominent faculty to the university and oversaw a significant increase in the number of faculty hired to develop and enhance strengths in key areas of research and scholarly activity. As a result, the university achieved substantial increases in research expenditures and federally awarded research grants, putting UB in league with the top national research universities in the United States.

The first international-born president in UB’s history, Dr. Tripathi served as dean of the Bourns College of Engineering at the University of California-Riverside prior to coming to UB. Previously, he was a professor in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Maryland, where his 19-year tenure as a faculty member included serving as chair from 1988-95.  

Provost Charles F. Zukoski

An internationally renowned scholar in chemical engineering and a member of the National Academy of Engineering, Charles F. Zukoski was named provost and executive vice president for academic affairs on June 1, 2012. Dr. Zukoski joined UB from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he was the Elio Eliakim Tarika Chair of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. At Illinois, Dr. Zukoski previously served as vice chancellor of research and as head of the Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering department. From 2008-2011, he held the position of Chair of the Science and Engineering Research Council in Singapore, and is still involved as a member of the board there. Dr. Zukoski was named one of the Hundred Chemical Engineers of the Modern Era by the American Institute of Chemical Engineers. 

Buffalo Niagara

The Buffalo-Niagara region, home to 1.5 million residents, is the state’s second largest major metropolitan area, exceeded only by New York City. The region includes a diverse blend of communities, each with its own distinct personality, yet commonly characterized by a distinctly neighborly way of life, an unpretentious nature and spirited loyalty among residents. Buffalo’s own strong sense of community, easy lifestyle and affordability regularly place it in top ten lists from a variety of national publications for its overall quality of life.

The Buffalo area is rich in natural resources and beauty, and offers an impressive array of cultural and recreational opportunities uncommon for a region of its size. Buffalo has rich cultural resources that reflect its distinguished history. Buffalo has earned a reputation as a national arts destination for the world-class collections of modern painting and sculpture at the Albright-Knox and other regional galleries as well and the city’s extensive array of historical landmark buildings. Its expansive park system, designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, is considered to be the very best work of Olmsted’s career. Buffalo is also a treasure trove for the performing arts. The Grammy-Award winning Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra is led by the internationally influential conductor, JoAnne Falletta. The city is home to the state’s largest concentration of theaters outside of New York City.

Buffalo Niagara is a four-season region that offers the best for seasonal sports enthusiasts who like to ski, skate, sail, fish, swim, run or bicycle. For those who would rather watch and cheer, Buffalo fans enjoy a full complement of NCAA division I sports with the UB Bulls, as well as the NFL’s Buffalo Bills, the NHL’s Buffalo Sabres, Triple-A baseball’s Buffalo Bisons, and the National Lacrosse League’s Buffalo Bandits.

Less than a two-hour drive from Buffalo across the United States-Canada border is Toronto, the cultural, entertainment and financial capital of Canada. Buffalo is also ideally located for easy access to many of America’s greatest cities, with New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago and Washington, D.C. only an hour’s flight time from Buffalo-Niagara International Airport.

Nomination and Application Procedures

Additional information about the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences can be found at the school’s website, or at the search website,

Nominations and applications are now being accepted. Interested individuals should provide a curriculum vitae and an optional letter describing their interest in and qualifications for the position. All nominations and applications should be sent electronically via e-mail (Microsoft Word or PDF attachments strongly preferred) to:

Dr. Ilene H. Nagel

Leader, Higher Education Practice

Russell Reynolds Associates

All materials and inquiries will be held in strict confidence until the final stages of the search, at which time the express permission of the finalists will be obtained before making their candidacy public. References will not be contacted without the prior knowledge and approval of the candidate.

Compensation for this position is highly competitive. It is anticipated that the Dean will begin service January 1, 2013. Review of candidates will begin in mid-summer and continue until a dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences is appointed.

The University at Buffalo is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer dedicated to the goal of building a culturally diverse and pluralistic university community committed to teaching and working in a multicultural environment. Potential applicants who share this goal are encouraged to apply.