Liddy Selects Teresa A. Dahlberg Dean of the College of Engineering and Computer Science

May 4, 2015

Syracuse University Interim Vice Chancellor and Provost Liz Liddy today selected Teresa A. Dahlberg as the new dean of the College of Engineering and Computer Science.

Dahlberg comes to Syracuse from The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art in New York City, a highly selective, all-honors private university where she serves as chief academic officer for the university and dean of the Albert Nerken School of Engineering.

“Teresa has an extraordinary record of achievement that speaks to both her passion and her skill as a scholar and higher education leader,” says Liddy. “Throughout her multifaceted career, she has excelled as an innovative and strategic thinker who knows how to build consensus and motivate others toward common goals. In a highly competitive field, her exceptional capabilities stood out. I have recommended her to the Board of Trustees, and I fully expect they will support this selection at their meeting during Commencement weekend.”

Chancellor Kent Syverud believes Dahlberg’s varied background will be of great value to Syracuse University now and in the future. “Teresa is an outstanding scholar with 30 years of experience—including positions as an academic administrator, nonprofit founder, research center director, educator, industry developer and technology consultant. I know that she is the right person to the lead the college forward and will be a tremendous addition to Syracuse University.”

“It is my honor and privilege to be named the dean of Engineering and Computer Science at Syracuse University,” says Dahlberg. “The Chancellor’s Fast Forward Syracuse vision is bold and exciting. The aspirational atmosphere at Syracuse is palpable, in the students, faculty, staff and administrators. This is an exciting time in history to be an engineer or computer scientist—professions at the forefront in addressing the world’s most pressing social issues.”

“To do this, our graduates must be adept at crossing disciplinary boundaries, crafting innovative solutions to social, ethical and economic problems. The impressive research and education within the college, coupled with the growing collaborations across this comprehensive University, provide an opportunity for us to become a world-class college of engineering and computer science,” Dahlberg adds.

Cliff Davidson, the Thomas C. and Colleen L. Wilmot Professor of Engineering, director of the Environmental Engineering Program and chair of the search committee, agrees. “With many recent successes, the College of Engineering and Computer Science is on an upward trajectory,” Davidson says. “Teresa Dahlberg is the perfect person to lead the college to new heights at this important time in our history. It was a pleasure to work with the esteemed members of the search committee, who enabled us to attract an individual of Teresa’s talents.”

Dahlberg joined Cooper Union in 2013 as dean of the Albert Nerken School of Engineering. In 2014, she was asked to assume the additional role of chief academic officer (CAO). As dean she increased the engineering freshman class enrollment by 47 percent; increased the size and quality of the freshman applicant pool; increased the diversity and productivity of engineering research faculty; more than doubled enrollment in master’s of engineering programs and in the STEM high school program; and enhanced student opportunities for research, invention and study abroad. As CAO she helped lead a reinvention plan aimed toward financial sustainability, encompassing the schools of art, architecture and engineering, and the faculty of humanities and social sciences. As a member of the president’s cabinet, Dahlberg was a leading member of the finance committee, the academic affairs and student affairs committee, the faculty-student senate, and she actively engaged in development and alumni affairs initiatives on behalf of the institution.

Prior to joining Cooper Union, Dahlberg served as associate dean of the College of Computing and Informatics, a college formed in 2000 at the University of North Carolina (UNC) Charlotte. She was a professor in the computer science department, attracting over $20 million in external grants as principal or co-principal investigator. She also was founding director of the Diversity in Information Technology Institute (DITI), which addressed declining enrollments in computing, and was awarded over $15 million in research grants to support DITI initiatives.

Dahlberg has a record of reaching across the disciplines throughout her career. She created and piloted an engagement program for student success in the College of Computing and Informatics and later helped the university adapt the program to support freshman in all colleges across the university.

Dahlberg, who started at UNC Charlotte in 1995 as an assistant professor of electrical engineering, is co-founder and was director of the STARS Alliance (which later became the STARS Computing Corps, a 501c3), beginning in 2005. STARS is a consortium of colleges and universities with a mission to develop technology leaders and broaden participation through student-led regional engagement. Funded by the National Science Foundation, the program, adopted by 50 colleges and universities, enables college students to collaborate with regional K-12 schools, industry and community partners to inform, engage and prepare students for higher education in college-level computing programs.

Outside of the university, Dahlberg served with the National Science Foundation as an expert in the Computer Information Science and Engineering (CISE) Directorate (2011) and was a member of the CISE Advisory Committee (2011-2013). She has lectured and published widely on wireless networking research, with a focus on resource management, routing and fault tolerance for hybrid network architectures. More recently, her lectures and publications address novel approaches to education and broadening participation, with a focus on preparing global-minded science and engineering innovators and leaders.

Before her time at UNC Charlotte, Dahlberg was a staff engineer in the Banking Systems Division at the IBM Corporation. She was awarded the IBM Outstanding Technical Achievement Award for her hardware and software work on an image capture module for document reader/sorters.

Dahlberg earned a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering from the University of Pittsburgh in 1984. She completed an M.S. degree in 1990 and a Ph.D. in 1993 in computer engineering at North Carolina State University.

Dalberg is expected to assume her role as dean on August 1.