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Welcome Dean Boyan

The VCU School of Engineering is poised for dramatic transformation with the incoming leadership of nationally acclaimed researcher and entrepreneur Barbara D. Boyan, Ph.D.

She officially joins the school as dean in January 2013 and brings the energy, enthusiasm and talent needed to oversee the school’s expected growth in coming years. Boyan comes to VCU from Georgia Tech, where she serves as associate dean for research and innovation in its College of Engineering.


A search committee called Boyan’s academic and professional accomplishments “spectacular” and endorsed her as a distinguished scholar and collaborator.

Boyan received her B.A., M.A. and Ph.D. from Rice University. Over the span of her career, she has started several companies, written approximately 400 peer-reviewed papers and established 14 U.S. patents.

She serves as both a leader in and member of dozens of professional and academic organizations. In 2012, she was elected to the prestigious National Academy of Engineering.

Building on success

The search committee voiced confidence in Boyan’s ability to strategically build on the success of the School of Engineering, which has seen extraordinary growth since it welcomed its first class in 1996.

In 2011 the school ranked first among U.S. engineering schools in the percentage of women who earn master’s degrees, and nearly 93 percent of its graduates land jobs or pursue advanced studies within six months of graduating according to 2012 survey results.

Boyan will continue to push the school forward. Her goals include recruiting 48 new faculty members in the next six years and doubling the size of the school in the next five.

Her love for art — Boyan minored in art history — will manifest in increased collaboration between the School of Engineering and both VCU’s arts school and its business school.

Looking ahead

Boyan will also cultivate the school’s industry partnerships, which bring professional engineers in to teach, yield joint research projects and create more opportunities for students to gain internships.

As an administrator, scholar and collaborator, Boyan will lead the School of Engineering to new heights in productivity and innovation.

The school is excited to welcome Boyan and her vision for making it a key part of VCU’s rise as a premier urban, public research university.

Send in your comments

Join us in welcoming Barbara D. Boyan, Ph.D., as dean of the School of Engineering by leaving your notes and comments here.

Your words will be shared with the dean as she transitions to VCU, where she officially takes leadership of the school on Jan. 1, 2013.