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Alissa Park to assume position of dean of UCLA Samueli School of Engineering

The UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science is pictured. On Tuesday, UCLA announced that Columbia University professor Ah-Hyung “Alissa” Park will be the School of Engineering’s next dean, effective Sept. 1. (Daily Bruin file photo)

By Anna Dai-Liu

June 23, 2023 10:07 p.m.

This post was updated July 2 at 7:43 p.m.

Columbia University professor Ah-Hyung “Alissa” Park was named dean of the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science.

According to a June 20 press release from UCLA, Park – who is currently chair of Columbia’s Department of Earth and Environmental Engineering and director of the university’s Lenfest Center for Sustainable Energy – will begin her term Sept. 1. During her time at Columbia, she launched initiatives to increase research on carbon emissions and sustainable energy. Park, whose research focuses on using sustainable energy and carbon capture to address climate change, also co-founded Greenore Cleantech, a company that converts industrial wastes into chemical resources while absorbing carbon dioxide, according to the press release.

“It is an exciting and critical time for engineering and computer science as we focus on addressing many grand challenges and opportunities with tremendous social impact such as climate change, pandemics and artificial intelligence,” Park said in the press release.

She will succeed Bruce Dunn, a distinguished professor of materials science and engineering, who served as interim dean for the 2022-2023 academic year. The previous permanent dean, Jayathi Murthy, stepped down last summer to become president of Oregon State University.

[Related: UCLA dean Jayathi Murthy to become next president of Oregon State University]

Park has also collaborated with Columbia’s Women in Energy initiative and has worked with the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women to support sustainable energy entrepreneurship in developing nations.

In an email to all School of Engineering students, faculty and staff, Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Darnell Hunt said Park was selected by a committee whose chair was Paul Krebsbach, dean of the UCLA School of Dentistry.

“Chancellor Block and I are confident that under Alissa’s visionary leadership, UCLA Samueli will make even greater strides in advancing engineering education and research for the benefit of our society,” Hunt added in the email.

Park added in the press release that she looks forward to joining the UCLA community.

“I am deeply humbled and also excited to serve as the next dean of engineering at UCLA, a world-class public university,” she said in the press release. “I am thrilled to work with all of the members of our exceptional and diverse community – faculty, students, staff, alumni and other colleagues – to engineer change for a better future, by design, for all.”

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Anna Dai-Liu
Dai-Liu is a News reporter on the science and health beat and a Copy contributor. She is currently a a second-year neuroscience student.
Dai-Liu is a News reporter on the science and health beat and a Copy contributor. She is currently a a second-year neuroscience student.
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