UC San Diego names Carnegie Mellon University’s College of Engineering Dean, Pradeep Khosla, new chancellor

Pradeep K. Khosla
Pradeep K. Khosla

University of California President Mark Yudof announce at noon on May 3, his selection of Pradeep K. Khosla, dean of Carnegie Mellon University’s College of Engineering, aka the Carnegie Institute of Technology, to serve as the eighth chancellor of UC San Diego.

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Pradeep K. Khosla

Citing Dean Khosla’s accomplishments as a leader, educator and researcher, President Yudof said Khosla emerged as the top candidate after an international search.

Details of the appointment will be voted on at the May 16 meeting of the UC Board of Regents.

Khosla will succeed Marye Anne Fox on Aug. 1. Fox, who announced her resignation last year, will continue serving as chancellor until then.

“Pradeep Khosla will bring to UC San Diego a distinctive set of attributes that will enable the university to build on the excellence that has made it one of the top institutions of higher learning in the world,” Yudof said. “He is a time-tested, oft-honored researcher, an innovative educator dedicated to improving the quality of life for students, faculty and staff, and an entrepreneurial leader with a global vision and proven fundraising abilities.”

During nearly eight years as dean, Khosla, also the Philip and Marsha Dowd University Professor at Carnegie Mellon, has initiated undergraduate curriculum reform, successful diversity efforts, multidisciplinary and multi-college research centers, multidisciplinary graduate offerings, and international programs in Japan, Korea, Portugal, China and Rwanda. Under his leadership, the College of Engineering has significantly increased the number of women and students of color in its graduate programs.

As dean of the College of Engineering, he sets the strategic direction for undergraduate and graduate education and research. The College of Engineering was ranked sixth nationally in the 2011 U.S. News and World Report Survey and 12th in the world by the 2011-12 Times Higher Education World University Rankings. Several strategic initiatives he launched have resulted in doubling of the college’s budget and also a near doubling of the Ph.D. students during his tenure.

His leadership in fundraising from industry, federal and state government, foundations and alumni has benefited both the college and the university: He has played a central role in a $100 million fundraising campaign for a universitywide energy institute and $90 million for a 100,000-square-foot College of Engineering building for biotechnology, energy and nanotechnology.

A strong believer in the role of a research university as an economic engine within the community and the country, Khosla is an active member of the Pittsburgh community. He serves on the boards of several nonprofit organizations, including The Children’s Institute, IIT Foundation, Mellon-Pitt Corp. and the Pittsburgh Technology Council. He has served on the advisory boards of several universities.

“UC San Diego’s astounding growth and success are due in large part to its history of partnership with and support from the San Diego community,” Yudof said. “Pradeep understands the importance of these connections and will foster and expand them.”

Khosla grew up in Bombay (now Mumbai), India. He earned his MS and Ph.D. degrees in electrical and computer engineering at Carnegie Mellon in 1984 and 1986 after graduating from the Indian Institute of Technology with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering in 1980 and working for two years in India as an engineer. During his years at Carnegie Mellon, in addition to teaching, writing and undertaking research, he served as head of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, director of the Information Networking Institute and founding director of the Carnegie Mellon CyLab and the Institute for Complex Engineered Systems.

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