Scranton Named Dean of UI College of Engineering

Monday, April 2, 2012

By Gary Galluzzo

University of Iowa Executive Vice President and Provost P. Barry Butler has named Alec B. Scranton as dean of the University of Iowa College of Engineering, effective today, Monday, April 2.

Scranton has served as interim dean of the college from Oct. 1, 2010, to the present, while continuing his duties as University of Iowa Foundation Distinguished Professor of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering.

Scranton, 48, joined the UI faculty in 2000, after earning his bachelor of science degree from the UI in 1984 and his doctorate in chemical engineering from Purdue University in 1990, both in chemical engineering.

“I am excited and honored to become the dean of engineering at the University of Iowa,” Scranton says. “It is inspiring to work with the talented and dedicated faculty, staff, students, alumni and friends of the college. The college is well positioned to continue its leadership role in engineering education and discovery.”

Butler, who preceded Scranton as engineering dean, welcomes Scranton’s continued leadership.

“Alec Scranton is a proven leader with a clear vision for the future of the College of Engineering,” Butler says. “He is a well-respected leader who will work closely with faculty, students, staff, alumni, and the broader UI community to advance the college and university. I also admire his vision for partnering with Iowa businesses. Alec was my top choice, and I am pleased he accepted the offer.”

Scranton’s appointment is subject to approval by the Board of Regents, State of Iowa.

Scranton was one of three finalists interviewed on the UI campus earlier this year by a search committee chaired by Rita Frantz, dean of the UI College of Nursing.

“I am delighted that Alec Scranton will be our new dean of the College of Engineering. His experience and leadership will provide the college with both continuity and forward momentum. In areas such as flooding to sustainability to biomedical imaging, the College of Engineering provides critical education, research, and service to the people of Iowa, the nation, and the world. Those contributions will be continued and enhanced under Dean Scranton’s vision and leadership,” says UI President Sally Mason.

“In addition to my experiences as an educator and a researcher, I am delighted to bring my perspective as a fifth-generation Iowan and a University of Iowa alumnus to helping the college meet its objectives,” says Scranton.

Scranton served as associate dean from 2003 to 2010, successfully leading the college's academic side through a multitude of initiatives, including completion of a critical ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology) accreditation review, major strides in K-12 outreach and engagement, and innovative living/learning programs. Previously, he served as departmental executive officer of the Department of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering.

He is also director of the National Science Foundation Industry-University Cooperative Research Center (NSF/IUCRC) Photopolymerization Center at the UI. The center represents a collaboration of scientists from the UI and the University of Colorado, as well as industrial representatives.

He received a Regents Award for Faculty Excellence in 2007. In addition, Scranton is a researcher at the UI Optical Science and Technology Center.

He has published more than 100 papers, has been granted 10 patents, and has given more than 70 invited talks and presentations at professional meetings. His research awards include the Dow Chemical Company Environmental Enhancement Award, the 2003 University of Iowa College of Engineering Research Award, and the Cooperative Research Award from the American Chemical Society. Scranton’s teaching awards include the American Institute of Chemical Engineers’ Outstanding Professor Award, the Withrow Teaching Excellence Award, and the Michigan State University’s Teacher-Scholar Award. His development of a web-based version of the sophomore-level core course on material and energy balances received the J.J. Martin Award from the American Society for Engineering Education.

He is a member of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, American Chemical Society, American Society for Engineering Education, and Omega Chi Epsilon.