EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — Starting on Aug. 3, 2022, UTEP’s College of Engineering will have a new Dean. Kenith Meissner Ph.D. has served in both the private sector and academia, most recently as Pro-Vice Chancellor/Executive Dean and as professor of Science and Engineering for Swansea University in Wales.

“Ken is an experienced Dean who is ready to take our Engineering program to the next level,” UTEP President Heather Wilson said. “In addition to a strong record of research, he has experience in industry and in driving innovation that will be vital to the future of our region.”

Meissner graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Lehigh University in 1987 and earned his doctoral degree in optical sciences from the University of Arizona in 1994.

After graduating, Meissner was a postdoctoral appointee in the Surface Physics Group at Sandia National Laboratories.

Meissner succeeds Patricia Nava, Ph.D., who served as interim dean of UTEP’s College of Engineering for more than two years.

“I am looking forward to serving with the faculty and staff to build on these already outstanding experiences for UTEP engineers and computer scientists. We will continue our work molding leaders and developing innovators to make a critical impact in the future of the Paso del Norte region.” Meissner said.

In his role of Pro Vice-Chancellor/Executive Dean of the Faculty of Science and Engineering at Swansea, Meissner oversaw the creation of an academic unit with more than 6,500 students served by more than 300 faculty members. Under his leadership, the new Science and Engineering unit achieved an increase in student satisfaction based on a national survey and placed 10 programs in their respective national top 10 rankings.

Meissner has published more than 90 papers and been principal investigator (PI) or co-PI on more than $5 million in grants from funders such as the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, medical charities, nonprofit organizations and private companies. 

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