New Electrical Engineering Chair Mehdi Shadaram
Mehdi Shadaram

UTSA names electrical engineering department chair

(Nov. 19, 2003)--The University of Texas at San Antonio has named Mehdi Shadaram chair of the Department of Electrical Engineering and a Briscoe Distinguished Professor in the UTSA College of Engineering.

The endowed professorship is supported by funding from former Texas Governor Dolph Briscoe and his wife, Janey Briscoe.

Shadaram is charged with leading the department to the next level of distinction and assisting the college in promoting excellence in research and teaching. With expertise in optical communications, he was instrumental in bringing to UTSA a $400,000 grant sponsored by the Office of Naval Research.

"I would like to enhance the department's reputation and visibility by advancing the facility infrastructure for teaching and research," said Shadaram. "With expanded partnerships with external constituents, we can increase undergraduate awareness of graduate educational opportunities and recruit and retain highly qualified faculty and staff."

Before coming to UTSA, Shadaram worked 20 years in academia and industry including serving as chair of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP), where he helped establish industrial partnerships resulting in more than $1.6 million in support from the Texas Instruments Foundation and Lucent Technologies.

At UTEP, Shadaram established a fiber-optic research laboratory that generated more than $4 million in research funding from NASA, the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Office of Naval Research and the Department of Defense.

Shadaram has published more than 70 articles in refereed journals and conference proceedings and served as director of the UTEP Research Experience for Undergraduates Program, a task force within the Model Institution for Excellence program supported by a $12-million NSF grant.

A senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), Shadaram served as IEEE chairman and treasurer of the El Paso section as well as faculty adviser of the UTEP's IEEE student chapter.

In 1993, Shadaram received the C.R. Nichols Award for teaching excellence at UTEP, the Associated Western Universities Faculty Fellowship Award in 1990 and 1991 and the American Society for Engineering Education-Navy Summer Faculty Fellowship Award in 1994. He was cited in the "Marquis Who's Who in the World" and "Who's Who in America."

Shadaram received doctoral and master's degrees in electrical engineering from the University of Oklahoma, Norman and a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from the University of Science and Technology, Tehran.

--Kris Rodriguez